There are several types of garage door openers which can make shopping for a brand new one a bit of an adventure. One such area where there are many variances is in the drive mechanism. The drive is a little like the transmission of a car. It can come in a few different forms. Each form has its own set of advantages.
The one that is most suitable for you will depend on your needs, where you live, and how much area you have in your garage. In this piece, we will try to help you make sense of garage door openers.
The Drive Basics
The primary difference separating the varieties of garage door openers is that some use DC or direct current, and other openers use AC or alternating current. A DC motor will begin slowly, increase its speed to the normal limit, and then slow it down again towards the end. The AC motor maintains a consistent rate of speed. There isn't a significant difference in how swiftly the motors open and close the doors.
The value of the current is not in the speed, it is in the sound it makes. DC motors operate more quietly than AC motors. You will also find that adding a backup battery is possible with a DC motor, but not with an AC motor.
The Mechanics of the Drive
On a door with a trolley that is connected in the middle, the belt that lifts and lowers the door is made of rubber strengthened with metal wires, the same way as a steel-belted radial tire. Not all belts use metal for reinforcement. Some use polyurethane, while others use fiberglass.
This belt runs along a T‑shaped track installed on the ceiling. The belt’s tension can be adjusted with a wrench to account for wear and tear. To complete the door opener, you can buy either a ½ or ¾ HP (horsepower) motor. The ½ HP is enough for a single door, but if you have a double door, you’ll need a ¾ HP motor.
The door opener is only intended to be a replacement for human power. Of course, a single garage door might weigh 100 pounds, and a double door could weigh 200. Balancing is necessary to make it possible to open and close the door by hand. A balanced door should weigh between eight and 10 pounds and you should be able to open it with one hand. If not, call a service professional right away.
The Advantages of a Belt‑Drive Opener
The single most important benefit of an opener fitted with a belt‑drive is that it is so much quieter than a chain‑drive opener. The right model can reduce operating noise by up to 30% over other options. So, if you’re looking for quiet operation, consider something like LiftMaster’s 8550W.
The 8550W is quieter than others for other reasons than just the rubber drive belt. It was designed from the ground up to be as quiet as possible, offering smooth, fluid operation and isolating vibrations that might cause unwanted noise.
Price is probably the only real drawback to this model. It is a little more expensive than chain‑driven models, but most homeowners, particularly those with a bedroom beside or above the garage, find that the near‑silent operation is well worth the uptick in price.
Tips for Making Things Quieter
Openers that are mounted on wood joists need to be properly secured.
A strip of semi‑rigid rubber installed between the steel angle and the wood joist will reduce noise transmission. An optional vibration isolation kit can further reduce noise transference.
Switch to nylon rollers.
When compared to metal rollers, nylon ones can go a long way toward making your system run silently. You can choose from white or black, as well.
Steel parts need lubrication.
You need to spend a little time lubricating all of the metal parts with motor oil, such as 5W30, which will help to reduce noise. This should be done at least twice per year for the best effect. REMEMBER: Door openers fitted with rubber belt drives are NOT supposed to be lubricated. The drive sprockets, located at each end of the belt, were lubricated with grease that is recommended by the manufacturer when they were installed, and you don’t have to worry about this for at least 5 to 7 years.
Soundproof the bedroom.
A bedroom with a wooden floor can become an echo chamber because the sound bounces off the hard floors. Carpeting, rugs, and even wall hangings can help to silence the noise.
Install a jackshaft door opener.
If there is enough space, you should install a jackshaft door opener. The ceiling door opener transfers sound through the wall joints which will be negated by installing the Jackshaft.
Struggling to reduce noise in your garage? It can be a serious challenge. We invite you to speak to an experienced technician at Midway Garage Door to discuss your options, including switching to nylon rollers or even installing a jackshaft opener.
We are Here for You!
When you are ready, contact us at 1‑866‑573‑3667. We are the garage door experts, and we know garage door openers inside and out. Whether you have questions about the brands on the market, or want to know more about jackshaft technology, we can help. Not into phone calls? We’re happy to email you a quotation.