You Need a New Garage Door Opener When…
Garage door openers can last a very long time. If you don’t use your door too often, or if you simply ‘got a good one’, your door opener can work efficiently for decades.
But that longevity can also hide the signs that it’s time for a new opener. It’s simply human nature to ‘adjust’ to the things around us. As things gradually change, we adjust to the changes and don’t really notice they’ve happened.
Kinda like watching your children grow up.
But, while not realizing that your ‘little boy’ is now shaving is just one of those foibles of life, not realizing that you need a new garage door opener can be actually become a safety hazard and even be a threat to your home security.
To underline this, consider that your door is the largest and heaviest moving object in your house, and its opener controls its actions. If there is any question about whether you need to replace the opener, do you really want to risk the consequences?
In any case, if your garage door opener has one or more of the following characteristics, it’s definitely time to replace it.
1. It’s Over 20 Years Old
The garage door opener safety features that so many of us take for granted today were not always in place. And many of the openers made before the new safety features were required by law are still in operation. If yours is one of them, it should be replaced regardless of how well it works.
Why? Your family’s safety is at stake. Before the early 1990s, door openers were not required to have any automatic reversing safety features. That means, if the door began closing and something or someone got in its way, the door would continue to close. In the U.S., the problem became so bad that the government enacted new rules for residential garage door openers in 1993 and Canada soon followed suit.
2. You Don’t Notice it’s so Noisy
This is one of those that we just get used to. But your neighbors don’t. The belt and chain drives on older models were larger and less attention was paid to making them operate quietly. As time goes on, they can get louder. If you have an older opener, take a moment to give it a listen. Is it louder than anything else in your neighborhood? If yes, then it’s time to do your neighbors a favor.
3. The Opener Uses Fixed Security Codes
The ease at which burglars can steal the fixed codes of older garage door openers that us RF frequency identifiers made them a great way to get into your house with ease. Newer remote and keyless entry devices have rolling codes that are different every time you use the door. If someone happens to find out the code, that code won’t be the same if they try to break into the garage.
4. It Has Worn-Out Numbers on the Exterior Keypad
If you think that, of all the millions of possible number combinations on your keypad, a burglar could never guess what yours is, think again. At least if you’ve had the same code for a long time. The oils on your hands can wear away on the numbers you press repeatedly, which are, of course, the numbers in your ‘secret’ code. In addition, the numbers you don’t hit are obvious because you never touch them and wipe off the dust and dirt that can cling to them over time.
5. No Battery Back-Up
If you’ve ever needed to get your car out of the garage when the power’s out, you know how frustrating it can be. Most older garage door openers have a by-pass handle that lets you open the door manually. But, as time goes on, there’s more of a chance that the handle gets stuck or simply doesn’t work. Many newer openers have battery backups that let you open the door, as usual, power outage or not.
When you consider the relatively low cost versus the increased safety and convenience, an investment in a new garage door opener is a smart one.