Garage door openers are necessities in today’s modern home life. It provides convenience and comfort to the dwellers and drivers. It is almost impossible to imagine managing your day-to-day life without a remote or wall control to press and do everything for you.
If you’re moving into a new home and planning to get a new garage door opener, you need to familiarize yourself with how everything works. Here’s a guide that will show you everything that you need to know, from the kind of garage door openers in the market to troubleshooting your garage door opener:
Types of Garage Door Openers
Garage door openers are usually classified by the drive that they operate in and by the power that they have. Each of this garage door opener has its own set of pros and cons that you should weigh in to see if it fits your needs at home.
- Chain drive. This is a common garage door opener found in most homes today. The chain-drive opener uses a chain to pull a trolley which moves the door up or down. This type of garage door opener is reliable and affordable. The only disadvantage towards the chain-drive garage door openers is that they tend to be noisy. This may not be ideal if you have bedrooms directly adjacent or above your garage. Chain-drive openers are suitable for detached garages.
- Belt drive. Unlike the former, the belt-drive garage door opener uses a belt to move the largest moving part of your home. This is also a powerful opener that tends to be expensive. The great thing about this garage door opener is that it operates quietly which makes it agreeable to homes with living spaces above or beside your garage. This can be an investment on your part if you want a quiet opener.
- Screw drive. The screw drive is somewhere in between the two former garage door openers. It rotates around a steel rod that moves the trolley to open or close the door. Because of its simple mechanism, this opener requires less maintenance. Unfortunately, the screw-drive opener tends to be noisier than the chain drive.
Aside from the drives that garage door opener operates in, these are also classified according to the power that these have.
Most homes have a ½-horsepower garage door opener. This is an ideal opener for those with two-car garages. It has enough power to lift and open a heavy garage door. If you have a larger and heavier garage door, a ¾-horsepower can be a good option. This is great for heavy doors and can be durable. A 1-horsepower opener is suitable for the heaviest doors as it provides maximum power and efficiency. These more powerful garage door openers might be a better choice for carriage doors.
Garage door openers with a smaller motor can be used for lighter doors. These are powerful enough to lift your garage door whenever you need it.
Choosing an Opener for Your Budget and Needs
In choosing a garage door opener, you have to factor in the things that you need for your home.
Being familiar with the types of garage door openers and their respective price points will allow you to choose the opener that suits your budget. If you’re looking for a durable yet affordable opener, you can go for chain drive. If you have extra money to spare for your big purchase, a belt drive might be the perfect option.
After identifying the type of garage door that is ideal for your family, be it chain drive, belt drive, or screw driver, go into the features and performance of the garage door opener. Look for an opener with safety features, such as child lock or safety sensors. These mechanisms prevent the garage door from running over objects and pets that are on its way.
Security features should also be on top of your list as theft is a common problem. Rolling codes are standard features in most garage door openers and prevents piracy. If you desire added security features, such as smartphone controls and others, you might need to pay extra.
Controls and keypads are garage accesses that you should also consider in choosing an opener. Those with remotes allow convenience of opening even if you’re still far from your home. Multi-button remotes are ideal for those with multiple garage bays. A wall keypad provides you with access without the remote.
Remember, it is a must to stick to your budget when deciding on a new garage door opener for your home. However, do not sacrifice durability and performance for some extra savings. The garage door opener is an investment that you and your family can make towards a more convenient home life and that extra dollars spent can provide you with lasting comfort through the years.
Setting up Your Garage Door Opener
There are different options when it comes to installing your garage door opener once you’ve made the purchase. There are do-it-yourself kits that give you a step-by-step guide on how to mount your opener properly. This is a great idea for the handy homeowners out there who enjoy getting themselves worked up on a weekend. This might take effort, but can be fun to those who are builders by nature. This route is also cost-effective.
If doing it yourself is not your thing, you can also leave it to the professional installers. This makes your job easier and you only have to sit back while waiting for the task to finish. Do this if you are not to be left with tools. However, this might require you to spend a bit more on convenience.
Programming your Remote or Keypad
Once the opener has been installed, you must program your garage door opener to prevent break-ins.
If you’re using a remote, ensure that this matches the opener that you have. Next, go over to the opener and find the learn button. Press this button and in 30 seconds, press your desired button to be programmed on your remote. The LED light will blink to show that programming has been a success.
The same thing works for the keypad entry. Within 30 seconds of pressing the learn button press the desired four-digit pin. Avoid using familiar or common numbers. Then, press enter.
Test both remote and keypad after programming to check if these work with the correct garage door opener.
As a homeowner, be knowledgeable on simple troubleshooting tips that can help you in an unexpected time. Although garage door openers are durable, at some point, they may break.
If the garage door does not open or close, there are several factors that you need to investigate.
- Check power. Inspect if the garage door opener is plugged and if your backup
batter is working. This might be a ‘duh’ moment, but this can happen. The batteries on your remote or keypad might be in need of changing. Try replacing the batteries and test the garage door opener again.
- Reset the opener. If the problem still persists, reset the opener by unplugging it and plugging it again. This oftentimes does the trick as it resets the opener.
- Check the sensor. If the garage door does not close, the safety sensor might be detecting an object on its way. In addition to that, the sensors might not be fully aligned which wreaks the garage door opener. These can sometimes be moved due to the constant movement of the opener. So ensure that the sensors are aligned and cleaned and that there isn’t any object blocking it.
- Call a professional. If the previous steps did not work, it’s time to call a professional to take on the bigger chunk of work.