It is always a problem when you have to manually open your garage yourself, and still manually close it after you have driven in or out. One effective remedy for this is the smart garage opener. If you are just hearing about it, then this is a cue to read through this guide since we would be talking about smart garage openers.
Smart Garage Door Openers
So, What is a smart garage door opener, exactly?
At its most basic level, a smart garage door opener utilizes your wireless internet connection and sensors on your garage door rails and controller to transmit information to an associated app that allows you to remotely see if your garage door is open, shut, somewhere between, when it was last opened, and more. With this baseline understanding in mind, we’ll dive into how a smart garage door opener works and the different types to be on the lookout for.
How Does a Smart Garage Door Opener Work?
Smart garage door openers come in two main forms: add-on accessories that are compatible with your current motorized garage door opener and a smart garage door opener system like Mighty Mule which has a new motorized garage door opener that is designed to work together.
To have a fully functioning smart garage door opener, it is necessary to have a great opener system, along with a solid wifi connection. These components work together to give you an optimal smart garage door opener experience.
But do smart garage door opener systems and add-on accessories give you the same components?
Types of Smart Garage Door Openers Mechanism?
Smart garage door openers come with different mechanisms in order to open and close the garage door. Some doors require more maintenance than others, whereas some are more affordable. Take a look at all the different types of driving mechanisms in these garage openers and find the one that best suits your needs.
Chain drive garage door openers are one of the most common and cheapest garage door openers present on the market. These work with the help of a stationary motor mounted on the ceiling and has a chain attached to it. This chain opens and closes the door. Even though they are incredibly cheap, they are very loud. You will need to maintain them as well.
Direct-drive garage openers do not make use of a pulley system to function. Instead, the motor itself moves on a designated track to close the door or open it. Direct drive door openers are simple to install but are expensive and cannot handle a heavy garage door either. However, a plus point for these products is that they have a quieter operation.
Belt-drive garage door openers operate in the same way as chain-driven ones; the only difference between them is their mechanism. A chain-drive model uses chains, whereas a belt-drive unit uses a rubber belt. Belt-driven openers are quiet when they function but can be costly. It is also important to remember that these models have a limited load capacity and cannot lift a very heavy door.
Screw-drive openers can lift heavier and larger doors without any problem and even cost less than chain-driven ones. The mechanism used in their function is a threaded rod that spins to move the door. The best part about screw drive openers is that they require little to no maintenance at all, and you will only have to oil and clean the threaded rod once or twice a year. Furthermore, they are quiet but not as quiet as belt-driven ones.
Add-On Accessories vs. Smart Garage Door Opener Systems
Add-on accessories and smart garage door opener systems are two different types of products. While the add-on accessories work with your existing motorized garage door opener system, a smart garage door opener system replaces your existing motorized garage door opener with a system that enhances the capabilities of your smart home and offers additional benefits and capabilities. First, let’s dive into how smart garage door opener add-on accessories work.
The main type of smart garage door opener add-on accessory is a smart garage door controller that attaches to your existing motorized garage door opener, typically through a double-sided adhesive strip. There is variability between various brands and systems available on the market, so there can be a differentiation between different products.
Often, the smart garage door controller will have wires that need to be attached to the open and close command nodes that are in your existing garage door opener. Additionally, some smart garage door opener accessory kits come with a sensor that will be attached to your garage door so that the controller can give you information about whether or not your garage door is closed, open, or somewhere in between.
What makes these smart garage door opener kits “smart” is that they connect to your Wi-Fi network and often have a corresponding app that allows you to add your devices to the network and monitor your garage door status with just the touch of a screen. The associated app often offers help walking you through general installation to help ease the process of adding the new devices to the network and getting them working with your current motorized garage door opener.
It’s important to note that for these kits to work properly, you’ll need to have a strong 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi connection that reaches into your garage. Depending on the brand and product, smart home garage door opener add-on accessories can offer a number of different capabilities ranging from scheduling, remote access, voice control, and geofencing, to simply replicating your garage door opener remote in app form.
While smart garage door opener add-on accessories are designed to be compatible with a variety of different garage door openers, a smart garage door opener system replaces your current motorized garage door with an entirely new system that works together to enhance your smart home ecosystem.
Features vary between products, but our Mighty Mule smart garage door opener systems offer a number of different benefits to make your life easier and your garage more secure. Mighty Mule smart garage door opener systems include a ¾ HPe (horsepower equivalent) DC motor with a steel reinforced belt drive for super quiet operation.
The LED light(s) built into the motor has a lifetime warranty and is dimmable, so you can easily adjust the brightness in your garage based on your needs. Mighty Mule smart garage door opener systems come with a 7” belt rail and a detailed installation manual that makes installing your new smart garage door opener system a breeze.
What makes our smart garage door opener system “smart” is that it is Wi-Fi equipped and allows remote entry access utilizing the transmitters, our smartphone Might Mule app, or voice recognition using Alexa and Google Home. Smart technology allows you to remotely monitor and/or grant entry to your home from virtually anywhere apps.
What Are the Benefits of Smart Garage Door Openers?
Convenience is the most obvious benefit of having a smart garage door opener. Once your opener is enabled, you never have to worry about losing your garage door remote or having it run out of batteries at an inopportune moment. You will always be able to open your garage door as long as you have a Wi-Fi connection and your digital device.
An even greater benefit is home security. You can set the door to open just before you get home, so there’s no time spent waiting outside for the garage door to open. As soon as you get home you can drive right in. You will also always know when your garage door is opened, even if you aren’t home, thanks to an automatic alert on your device. Some smart garage door openers even have the added capability of connecting to your home security systems.
You can open and close your door remotely from anywhere, so if you arrive at work or are headed out on vacation and suddenly realize you left the garage door open, you don’t have to return to close it. You can also use this feature to allow people access to your garage or home without giving them a key or passcode.
What Are the Disadvantages of a Smart Garage Door Controller?
There are not many disadvantages to having a smart garage door opener. There is the time and expense it takes to have it installed, but these are minimal compared to the benefits such a device can bring.
You also should not toss away your regular garage door remote entirely, as most smart garage door opener technology is designed with the idea that your primary method of opening and closing the garage door will still be the remote opener — unless you have it set on an automatic opening and closing schedule.
What to Consider When Looking For a Smart Garage Door Opener
We know it can be challenging and intimidating to scour through articles and information about new technology to glean the information that matters to you and that’s why we’ve done the work for you - from automatic solar gate openers to smart garage door openers. Below are a handful of factors to keep in mind as you begin your search for the perfect smart garage door opener for your home.
- Budget: We know that your budget is one of the primary considerations for any purchase you are planning to make. Before you start searching for a smart garage door opener system, we recommend taking a look at your budget and seeing how much you are willing and able to spend on a smart garage door opener system. This will help narrow down the products that will work for you and will make sure that you are comfortable with what you are spending before you sit down to begin comparing products. It is also helpful to find out what extra components you may need in order to make your system complete. Do you need a specific type of light bulb or is it included in your system like with a Mighty Mule smart garage door opener? It’s important to figure these things out sooner rather than later.
- How You Will Use It: Before you start your search, we recommend sitting down and writing out a list of what features you are looking for in your ideal smart garage door opener system. Are you looking for it to replicate your garage door remote in an app form? Are you looking to be able to set up a scheduling system to automate its use? Are you looking for your smart garage door opener to send you an alert when it is opened or closed? Do you receive packages at home and have concerns that the product won’t be delivered safely? These are just a few examples, but they offer different functionality you could have with your smart garage door opener depending on how you are planning to use it.
- Longevity: If you’re looking for a lasting, high-quality system, it’s better to invest in a smart garage door opener system so that everything in the system is designed with cutting-edge technology.
- Installation: Another consideration when looking for a smart garage door opener is how you plan on installing it. Will you be hiring someone to install it for you? Or are you banking on purchasing a DIY system so you can save a little money on the installation process? Knowing this ahead of time will help you to choose the smart garage door opener system that is right for you.
To conclude, when purchasing a garage door opener there are many factors to consider and choices out there. Using the information that is provided above should be able to guide you to help find what you are looking for in a garage door opener.