You’re going to start with the right size. Most garage doors are counterbalanced and an ½ horsepower opener should do the job. However, if you use your garage door opener often – for example, you habitually use it to enter your home – or if you have a very large or heavy door, you’ll get a smoother operation and a longer life with a higher horsepower. But, what else? How do you shop for a new garage door opener? Here are 5 features you should take into consideration.
1. Rolling Code: Most garage door openers will come with a rolling code, but check and make sure. A rolling code means that every time you open the door a new code is generated. It keeps a thief from using a device to find your code and breaking in to your home. It will also keep your neighbor’s garage door opener from opening your door.
2. Remote Entry: This may or may not be standard. If it isn’t, you can probably add it on as an option. A keypad or touchpad that mounts on the outside of the garage allows you to enter a code and open the door – without the remote. It’s great for families who want to use the garage door as an entry door and it’s also very handy if you lock yourself outside.
3. Battery Backup: The powers out. Are you stuck? You won’t be if you have a battery backup. Unfortunately, this is not a common feature and is usually found only on the upper-end garage door openers. Don’t worry, though. If your new opener doesn’t have battery backup, it will have a manual release so you can get in and out by hand.
4. Overhead Light: This has become almost standard and it’s a great feature. You open the door and the light goes on so you’re not in the dark. However, you may want to look for a model with a light you can control independently of the opening and closing of the door. You’ll even find garage door openers that have motion-activated lights so the light will come on when you come into the garage. If you have a spouse or a teen who works late, that light is a real safety feature.
5. Connectivity: Yep, you can get a “smart” opener. It will connect to your cell phone or tablet with an app or gateway and give you control no matter where you are. It can tell you if you left the garage door open or if someone has opened the door. Went to work and left the door open? Close it from your desk. If you use an app on your phone, password protect the phone so if it’s lost or stolen, you’re not giving away a “key” to your home.
These are just a few of the features you can find when you go garage door shopping. Go to your local garage door replacement company – one that is licensed and bonded – and ask them to help you explore all the different options and choices. They are the experts and they can help you find the garage door opener that’s just right for you!