A garage door opener is a common feature for most modern homes. The garage door opener uses an electric motor to power a drive system (usually, a chain or belt). The drive system is connected to the garage door with an arm that hinges up and out of the way when the door rises. Garage door openers can be controlled by wall mounted control panels or by wireless remote controls.
Most garage door opener parts can easily be replaced. Replacement parts are available directly from the manufacturer or from aftermarket dealers.
What Makes A Garage Door Opener Tick?
The power head of a garage door opener is a metal or plastic housing that encloses the motor, electrical connections and the control mechanism. The power head may also have a light mounted on its exterior.
The garage door opener drive mechanism is usually a chain or rubber belt. The drive moves along the rail, pulling the carriage back and forth to operate the door.
The rail assembly (which can be either a single or multiple pieces) supports the drive mechanism. The rail assembly also provides a track for the carriage assembly.
The rail header bracket holds rail to garage wall above the door. The header bracket must be mounted securely to keep the garage door opener in place.
The carriage assembly transfers power from drive mechanism to the door via door arm. The carriage assembly typically has a release cord to allow the door to be opened during power outages.
The door arm connects the garage door to carriage assembly. The door arm pulls or pushes the garage door open or closed.
Door sensors are mounted to the garage door rails. These LED sensors tell the garage door opener if a person or object blocks the opening. If the door sensor fails, the garage door won't close.
A wall controller operates the garage door opener manually. The wall controller is wired to the power head and may control the power head light separately.
The garage door can be opened from a car with a wireless remote controller. A quality garage door opener will provide a "rolling code" system that changes the entry code after each use.
Installing a garage door opener requires basic carpentry and electrical skills. While not very difficult, care must be taken to make sure all parts of the garage door opener are aligned properly.
Garage door opener repair might be something you can handle on your own.