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Garage Door Buying Tips

Aug 17, 2007
Automatic garage doors are no longer a convenience for only a few, the new generation of garage door is reasonably priced, safe and simple to install.

Here are a number of factors to consider when choosing a garage door.

The Type of Drive System

1. Screw-drive System

The screw-drive system has a lifting apparatus that moves the length of a steel rod. The system requires little maintenance due to the very few moving parts. The system body is mounted in the garage ceiling. The cost for screw-drive system is generally more than $150 and less than $200.

2. Chain-drive system

The chain-drive system has a metal chain lifting the garage door up or down along a set of tracks. The chain-drive system is the most common and usually the most affordable system. The chain-drive is priced in the range of $100 to $170.

On the downside, the chain drive system makes more noise than the screw-drive system. The chain drive system is mounted in the garage ceiling.

Chain drive mechanism: By far the most popular and affordable opening device.

3. Computer-controlled system

The computer-controlled drive system uses no screws or chain. The body of the system is mounted directly above the door. Having the system mounted above the door helps in garages that have low headroom. Also, it provides more ceiling space which can be used for storage.

The type of power

Select a motor with enough power to raise your door. Have at least a motor with hp if you have a double door. A large motor is likely to last longer. Try to find a motor with a "soft" start and stop. It operates more quietly and minimizes the wear and tear.

The speed

The more expensive garage door opens much faster, cutting down the waiting time on your driveway. The quicker opening model still closes at a slower speed for safety. Consider how much you are willing to spend for the quicker models.

Safety concerns

All garage doors have a safety feature that prevents the door from pinning objects. The door reverses in direction if they hit something. The safety feature is mandated by federal law. The safety feature is triggered by an electronic beam.

The computer-controlled mechanism measures the optimal operating time and speed of the door. It can detect and compensate for varying conditions - like if the door is coming in to contact with an obstruction or closing too fast.

Security features

The newer generation of garage doors use random codes for enhancing security. Each time the remote is used to open the garage door, a new random code is generated. The security feature prevents you from opening your neighbor's garage door and vice versa. The random code prevents code theft.

If the power is out, all garage doors have a manual that will open the door. A few high-end models have a function that allows the door to open just a little bit so that your dog or cat can get out.

The remote control

Several models use a single-button remote control, while others use a remote with multiple buttons that can open multiple garage doors. The multiple button remote control is the best choice for people with several garages, each with its own door.

The fixed controller

The fixed controller is mounted to the wall either inside or outside near the garage door. The fixed controller allows the door to be opened without a remote controller. The fixed controller usually does not come with the standard kit, it is usually an accessory.

The keypad provides you a means to lock the door for a specified amount of time, like when you are away on a trip. Another function is delayed closing, a brief pause between pushing the button and the closing of the door. The keypad provides a lot of time to exit on foot without running, dodging the electronic beam and the garage door.

Lighting

Many garage doors have a security light that turns on as you turn on the system. The light stays on just long enough for you to step out of your vehicle and get into the house. Most remotes have buttons that turns on the light without opening the door.
About the Author
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