An electric garage door opener is a motorized device used to open and close garage doors. There are two variations of electric garage door openers: those that are operated manually using a switch and those that are controlled using a remote.

Picking the right electric garage door opener will guarantee smooth operation and high performance of your garage door as well as ensuring your personal safety and security of your property. You should, therefore, consider purchasing quality door openers from well known and reliable garage door opener manufactures when it is time to repair your garage door opener.

These manufacturers include Genie, Liftmaster, Napoleon/Lynx and Overhead Door.


How do garage door openers operate?

Electric garage door openers can either be operated using a remote control or by use buttons and switches wired to the house. They work on the mechanism of springs and tensile strength.

Traditional electric door openers operated on simple radio transmitters and receivers. They, however, posed a major security issue since one remote was capable of running multiple garage door openers. Modern electric garage door openers, on the other hand, are radios that operate at 315 MHz and its signal has a binary number. This binary number is only unique to a particular remote.

When operated on, the remote transmits a signal which is then received by the opener. The opener then checks to ensure that the binary number received is correct. Once the number is verified, the transmitter activates a relay that starts the motor which closes or opens the door based on the door position. Finally, a new binary code is generated to prevent replay attacks.

How long do electric garage door openers last?

On average most garage door openers will last for 10 t0 15 years. However, this lifespan can be longer or shorter depending on how frequently you use the door opener and the level of door maintenance.

Common problems with garage door openers

Garage door openers, just like any other machine are prone to malfunctions. Some of these mechanical problems include:

  1. Sticking or jammed doors.

Jammed doors usually result from deformed channels or frames through which the doors slide. You can use simple tools such as a hammer to align the frames without much hustle.


  1. The door does not close all the way

The erratic opening and closing of the door may be caused by rusted or damaged rollers. You can try fixing this problem by lubricating or replacing the rollers.

Faulty safety sensors can also result to this malfunction. These sensors operate on the basis of photo eyes, i.e. it detects anything that comes in the line of the closing door and considers it as an obstructing agent hence stopping the door from closing. You are therefore required to realign or adjust the safety sensors to provide a clear sight line between the sensors.


  1. The door opener won’t operate on manual switches nor by remote control

If your garage door doesn’t open or close when you use either the wall switch or the remote, consider checking if the motor is unplugged. If it’s well plugged in, check to determine whether the fuse or circuit breaker has tripped or burned out. Replace the fuse or reset the breaker and try again.


  1. The door opener won’t stop running

This mechanical problem results from a malfunctioning up-limit switch. Try calibrating the up-limit switch according to the manufacturer’s manual to solve the problem. Learn more about garage door opener repairs here.