When you're shopping for a new garage door opener, there are many things to consider. How do you navigate through so many options and end up with the garage door opener that will meet your needs and last you many years before having to give it another thought? Here, you will find some information that can help you wade through the multitude of options and find the one that's right for you.
Knowing how much horsepower your garage door opener needs will help you narrow the options down substantially. The greater the horsepower, the heavier the garage door can be. So, if you have a basic single car garage door, you need nothing more than a ½ horsepower opener. If you have a double-door or a very heavy custom door, ¾ horsepower is what you need.
You will have four basic types of drives to choose from.
- Chain Drive – The most common option. Less expensive than the others, long-lasting, easy to install and very reliable. The only downside is that they can be pretty noisy.
- Belt Drive – A little more costly than chain drives and not quite as reliable, but they are quiet and can last just as long.
- Direct Drive – Very quiet, easy to maintain, reliable, but on the higher end of the price spectrum.
- Screw Drive – Not commonly used, but they are quiet and reliable. These typically need to be installed by a skilled technician. They are pretty expensive and complicated to install and maintain.
In most cases, residential garages are equipped with either belt or chain drive openers. If you don't have a problem with a little noise when the garage door is being used, then the chain drive is likely your best option. If your bedroom is directly over the garage and you don't enjoy the sound of your spouse coming in late at night or leaving early in the morning, the belt drive is your best option.
If you've never had a keypad on the outside of your garage to open the garage door, you don't know what you're missing. These little gadgets make things much easier. To open your garage door, you simply enter a short pin, and the door pops open. This removes the need to carry a key for the man-door and makes the garage accessible to you and anyone that you provide the pin code to.
If you experience power outages often, it might be time to consider investing in a battery backup for your garage door opener. This will make it possible for the garage door to open as it should and even light up the garage when there is no electricity to rely on.
Talk with your local residential garage doors expert to learn more about selecting the right garage door opener for your home.