Automatic garage door openers generally a valuable investment, especially when you are after the level of convenience they can provide. All you need to do is push a button, and they will do all the heavy lifting. You would not even need to get off your vehicle to open your garage door. This option is particularly convenient when the weather becomes inclement or when you are coming home late at night or after a long drive.
Like other consumer products, automatic garage door openers vary. When you are shopping for openers, you must consider several important characteristics that will ensure obtaining optimal result according to your needs and preferences. In this article, we are going to discuss what those factors are to help you make a well-informed decision.
The Type of Garage Door
Keep in mind that the options you have for your opener mainly depend on the type of garage door you have. The supplier will most likely ask you whether you have a sectional metal door, a one-piece construction style door or a sectional wood door. The selection process also depends on whether your door has windows insulation. If you plan on replacing your current door in the future, it will be advisable to match the right opener now.
The Types of Drives
Once you start shopping for garage door openers, you will find that the process can be confusing. However, you can always ask professionals to guide you, ensuring that you will get the best option for your home. Here are the different types of drives available:
Belt Drive Openers
You can expect quiet operation and superior performance from belt drive openers. It is worth noting that this type of drive is the ideal option for homes with living space next to or above the garage.
Chain Drive Openers
When you shop for garage door openers, you will find that this type of drive is the most commonly purchased product by consumers. Moreover, it is typically the more affordable option. Chain drive openers are not as quiet as the other choices. However, if your garage door is not next to or below a living space, they can be a good option. Do remember you might need to maintain this type of drive from time to time. Specifically, you would need to oil or tighten it occasionally.
Screw Drive Openers
Screw drive openers are specially designed to run quietly and smoothly. Since they have few moving parts, they require minimal maintenance or repairs. If you have a more massive double door, a screw drive opener is the best option for you.
Installers mount jackshaft openers on the wall by the garage door, allowing the homeowner to free up ceiling space. This option is ideal for people who do not have a lot of headroom in their garage.
Options for Access and Controls
You can even make your garage door opener operation easier by adding accessories like smart control panels or wireless keypads. You should also ask for backup options when speaking with a supplier. The other factors you should consider in this area are the people who usually access your garage door and the best choices suitable for your lifestyle. For instance, if you have multiple garage doors, you need to plan how you can use them without any hassle.
The weight of garage doors varies depending on their material. There are lightweight, uninsulated doors while there are heavier models with glass, insulation or solid wood. It is true that you should always consider the weight of the door. However, getting a ½ horsepower opener should suffice for typical use. What’s more important is you think of the size of the garage door and how often you will use it.
The primary benefit of choosing an opener with a higher horsepower is its ability to move the garage door with less strain. If you have a more massive, more massive door, such an option can be advantageous. It is also ideal for openers that are more frequently used. For instance, if you use your garage as the primary entrance to your home or you have multiple cars in use, an opener with a higher horsepower would be the best option. Since you are subjecting your opener to less strain, you can enjoy smoother operation and prolonged durability.
The Safety Features
Keep in mind that the opener will control the most substantial and most significant piece of equipment in your home. It is worth noting that a regular residential garage door can be as hefty as 600 pounds. So, it is crucial that you consider the safety features of the opener you wish to purchase. For instance, it should have sensors that keep the door from falling on anybody who may be in its path. The automatic reverse is another helpful feature which stops and lifts off the door when there is an obstruction present. There are doors with sensors that shoot an invisible beam of light. If anything interrupts the beam, the door will automatically stop and/or reverse.
Install the Opener Yourself or Hire a Pro
There is a good percentage of homeowners who claim that there is no need to hire a professional when installing a garage door opener. According to them, as long as you have a right amount of handyman skills, you should be able to tackle the job. You need to ensure that you have the right tools, parts and instructions before starting the process. Moreover, it is crucial that you understand the steps before following them. That said, it is always a good idea to have another person help you complete the job.
On the other hand, if you are not comfortable installing the garage door opener yourself, your best bet is to hire a professional. They should have the skills, experience and tools necessary to perform the job successfully. Moreover, they will be able to help you choose the right type of drive for your garage door.