Electric garage door openers are a very convenient home feature to have. But when is it time for a new one? And what do you need to know about getting a garage door opener installation? Here are five of the most important things to know about garage door openers and their installation process.
1. Reasons you may need a new garage door opener installation
First of all, let’s look at some reasons why it may be time to consider a garage door opener installation with a new unit:
- your garage door opener is more than 10 years old
- ongoing mechanical issues with your garage door opener affect its reliability
- your garage door opener is too loud
- you have concerns about how safe your garage door opener is
- your garage door opener lacks the convenient features of modern garage door openers
2. Understanding the types of garage door openers available
Garage Living’s choice for the garage door openers we sell and install are models from industry leader LiftMaster. Here’s a breakdown of the types of garage door openers available:
Chain drive openers – this is probably the style most people would associate with a garage door opener. A chain, much like a bicycle chain, is attached to a trolley that runs along a rail. The trolley is attached to the motor that opens and closes the garage door. Some modern chain drive garage door openers, such as LiftMaster’s Premium Series 8360 model, have DC motors that make their noise levels much quieter.
Belt drive openers – this type of opener operates in the same manner as a chain drive opener, with the chain replaced by a belt. Belt drive openers, such as LiftMaster’s Premium Series 8355 model or Elite Series 8550 model, cost slightly more than a chain drive model, but operate more quietly.
Jackshaft openers – these openers have a powerful motor that adjusts a torsion spring, which lowers and raises the garage door. Jackshaft openers can be mounted on your garage wall (which saves ceiling space) and have an ultra-quiet DC motor. The quiet and smooth operation of jackshaft openers, such as LiftMaster’s Elite Series 8500 model, makes them ideal for homes with attached garages, especially ones with bedrooms above the garage.
Screw drive openers – this type of opener is similar to belt and chain drive models, only a threaded steel rod is used to move the trolley. Screw drive openers tend to be regarded somewhat less affectionately than the aforementioned types of openers, however. This is due to their higher noise levels and past issues with temperature sensitivity.
3. Your garage door opener doesn’t actually do much of the lifting
Residential garage door openers typically have ½ or ⅓ horsepower motors. You may be surprised to know that a garage door opener doesn’t actually do most of the opening and closing of your garage door. The garage door’s springs handle the bulk of the work.
It’s imperative that these springs are properly adjusted during your garage door opener installation. Garage doors are heavy – they’re likely your home’s biggest mechanical device. Without the correct door spring tension, your opener motor will have a much shorter lifespan.
4. Understanding the convenience features on modern garage door openers
Garage door openers have come a long way in terms of design. They’re certainly more energy efficient. In addition to standard safety features that have been around for years (like eye sensors that detect obstructions in the door’s path and automatically reverse its direction), there are also lots of modern tech features available for today’s garage door openers that are very convenient. Examples available on LiftMaster openers include:
- MyQ® Technology lets you control and monitor your garage door from anywhere via a smartphone, tablet, or computer
- The Security+ 2.0™ feature guards against code theft by creating a new code for the opener with every click
- The Timer-to-Close feature automatically closes the door after a preprogrammed number of minutes
- The PosiLock® feature electronically monitors against a forced garage door opening
- Battery backup that keeps garage door operational during power outages
- Wireless and keyless entry that lets you access the garage without a remote control or key
5. Leave a garage door opener installation to the experts
Even for those that are mechanically inclined, a garage door opener installation should be approached with plenty of caution. Adjusting a garage door’s springs without expert knowledge poses the risk of serious injury.
A garage door opener installation also requires knowledge of areas such as electrical wiring, knowing how much horsepower is required for certain door weights, and ensuring all safety measures work properly. Our experts can take care of all aspects of your garage door opener installation.
Is it also time to replace your old garage door?
When you’re discussing your garage door opener installation with a Garage Living representative, ask them about replacing your garage door if it’s also not performing or looking its best.
We have a wealth of stylish and attractive steel, wood, fibreglass, and full view aluminum garage door designs to choose from. Modern garage doors can be customized with better insulation options that will improve your home’s energy efficiency. Garage door insulation also cuts down on incoming and outgoing noise and helps to reinforce the door.
Schedule your free in-home consultation with one of our design experts to plan your garage door opener installation project, or any other garage improvement project you might be considering.