A garage door opener is not something people think about when they think of replacing necessities in their homes. Just like all other mechanisms, garage door openers have a lifespan too.
If properly maintained, a garage door opener can last anywhere between 10 to 15 years. This will depend on the frequency of use, quality of the opener, and whether you are performing regular maintenance on the opener. If your opener detaches from the opening, makes loud noises, or moves slower than usual, it may be going bad.
In this article, you will learn about the signs you need to look for to know if your opener needs replaced. Also, we will explain why it is essential to replace your garage door opener, and compare the prices for you.
Is Your Garage Door Opener Going Bad?
Many people think that having a garage door opener is all about convenience. Although convenience plays a significant role, it is a safety factor as well. When a garage door opener is malfunctioning, safety has mostly gone out the window. So has the convenience factor because you’re the entire mechanism is causing you more hassle, instead of helping you.
Here are several signs that your garage door opener most likely needs to be replaced:
- Moves slowly upon shutting and opening
- Detaches from the opener causing it to freefall
- Obnoxious noises and sounds
- Random opening and shutting
- Reverse operations amidst commands (Will close in the middle of opening)
- Heavy vibrations or shaking when in use
The Safety Aspect
As you can see, some of these factors can be extremely dangerous. Between 20,000 to 30,000 injuries occur annually from garage door incidents. Furthermore, dozens of deaths, mostly young children, arise from malfunctions as well.
Not only does the safety aspect protect against physical harm, but home invasions as well. Your locking mechanism may not work correctly, putting you at risk.
This is the most dangerous part of a failing garage door opener. Sometimes, you may notice your door drop while it’s in the middle of opening. Believe it or not, people have lost their lives due to this very issue.
If your door detaches or has in the past, you need to ensure that your opener is installed correctly. If it is, then this is a sign that you need to replace your opener as soon as possible.
Making Your Garage Door Opener Last Longer
If you want to get the best use out of your garage door opener, you need to take care of it. Maintenance is going to be your first line of defense. Make sure that you keep up on maintaining your garage door opener.
However, eventually, it will fail, and you will need to buy a new one regardless of how well you took care of it. When this happens, you will need to decide whether or not you want to upgrade.
Old Style Garage Door Openers
Individuals are most familiar with these types of openers. Your garage door sits on a motorized track, and an electric motor powered it open and closed. Usually, there is a button on the inside of your garage used to open and shut the door, or you may have a remote that you keep in your car.
Several issues with the old-style openers include:
- Broken springs
- Falling off the track
- The door dropping
- Randomly closing and opening.
Similar Remote Frequencies
Not a lot of people know this, but the old-style openers worked on similar remote frequencies. There were several reports of having the ability to open your neighbor’s garage. While it seemed silly at first, criminals found ways to break into unsuspecting homes.
Nothing has changed in the way that these operate, even today! The same issues occur with the older garage door openers. However, if this doesn’t worry you, then you may want to purchase the same type of opener upon replacement. Although there are other options available that cost around the same price!
Garage Door Openers Using Smart Technology
Smart technology for garage doors has almost become a necessity for families. There are many more advantages with this type of opener than the older styles.
First, smart technology allows you to check your door remotely, which means if you’re away from home and on vacation, you can check the security and even open and close your door. Some of the newer models also contain security cameras and audio abilities, which you can use to view and hear what is going on from your phone.
Assured Safety and Security
If your garage door opener was installed prior to 1993, it doesn’t have a safety reversing mechanism and, therefore, should be replaced with a newer model. This feature uses sensors on either side of the door to detect when objects get in the way. Once detected, the door will automatically stop and move in the reverse direction.
Another beautiful thing about these types of openers is that they are more secure regarding safety. Most of them have sensors that do not rely on electrical wiring that gets stuck in the tracks of your door.
Also, they use rolling codes to change the frequencies of your security system. The constant changes make it impossible for criminals to bypass by simply duplicated the code and entering your garage uninvited.
If your garage door opener makes a lot of noise, disrupting your household and possibly even your neighbors, installing a new one will allow you to enjoy quieter operation. The original design of garage door openers involved a chain drive to open and close the door.
If you currently have a garage door opener that resembles a bicycle chain near the motor unit, consider replacing it with a belt-drive or screw-driver garage door opener. These new models will most certainly be quieter than the current unit you have, while belt drives are the quietest of them all.
The Cost of Old Style vs. Smart Garage Door Openers
|Garage Door Opener Comparison Chart|
As you can see in the chart above, it doesn’t cost that much more to upgrade your garage door opener. The only thing you need is a smartphone, which by now, most people have. If you don’t’ have a smartphone, you can purchase one.
The smart garage door opener app is also accessible by laptop and tablet too. So, if you have Wi-Fi, you can access your door from any smart device, anywhere in the world. Talk about peace of mind at an affordable price!
Another point to make is that the higher-end old-style costs more than a Smart style opener. Suppose you want a luxury smart garage door opener. That will still cost you $150 less than the topline old-style.
Different Features That Come with the Smart Systems
Many different features come with the smart garage door opening systems. There is no one-size-fits-all preference when it comes to something like this. You need to know what you want, and from there you can compare the options to choose the best one for you.
Features available for a Smart Garage Door Opener:
- Wi-Fi enabled
- App for operation
- Integrations possible with Alexa and Siri, as well as other technology
- Video security
- Car Sensor
- LED lights
- Two-Way audio system
- Integration with your home’s security system
There are too many features to list, but above are the most common ones.
Pricing and Features
Of course, the price climbs as you add features onto your garage door opener. However, $650 for all of this and more is a steal! Then again, if you are not going to use all these features, there is no point in purchasing one that includes all of them.
It’s up to you to figure out the best upgrade for you, or if you want to upgrade at all. Maybe you’re happy with the old-style garage door openers. If that’s the case, then that’s the best one for you!
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Professional to Install Your New Garage Door Opener?
To hire a professional, you will pay the costs for the supplies, as well as the labor fees. Labor fees are anywhere from $85 per hour to $110 per hour, depending on the person you go through. The national average for installation is about $353.
How Much Does Home Depot Charge to Install a Garage Door Opener?
Home Depot has deals starting at $127 for garage door opener installation. This price includes the removal of old openers and the materials. You can check online or call to schedule an installation date.
The safety of your family and your home is essential! Having a faulty opener presents so many opportunities for unfortunate accidents, all of which can be prevented by simply replacing your opener with a newer model.
Upgrading and replacing your opener is just as important as replacing anything else in your home. If you’re looking to upgrade, you don’t have to wait until your current opener is failing. Modern technology has paved the way to make your home more secure, and your garage door opener quieter and easier to operate.