Garage doors have become a prominent aesthetic feature of your home. With more styles and colors available than ever before, they contribute to your home’s overall curb appeal. But on top of aesthetics, many homeowners are installing automatic garage doors to increase everyday practicality and security. If you are thinking about switching to an automatic garage door, read on for a few tips to help you choose the right one.
Why switch to an automatic garage door?
For starters, let’s look at some of the advantages of an automatic garage door. The most obvious one is practicality. With an automatic opener, you no longer need to get in and out of the car. This is especially practical on cold winter days. Furthermore, automatic garage doors typically work with Bluetooth technology and thus can be opened a few meters from your home.
Additionally, automatic garage doors provide better security. Openers generally operate with electricity, allowing you to better control access to your home. You can also connect your home’s alarm system to the automatic garage door.
The different drive options of an automatic garage door
Next, you will need to consider what type of drive you will need or want for your door. The drive refers to the chain, belt or other mechanisms that moves and lifts your garage door. There are four main types from which to choose:
- Chain-drive openers
These are the most cost-effective, popular and durable on the market. They generally use a metal chain to lift and close the door. Chain drives are ideal for one-piece wood doors, and heavier or oversized doors. However, the downside of these type of openers is the noise factor.
- Belt-drive openers
These openers are great in terms of noise. They offer a much quieter operation because they use a rubber belt instead of metal parts.
- Screw-drive openers
This is a highly reliable option as it has fewer moving parts than a chain drive. Additionally, it is a little less noisy but not as quiet as the belt-drive openers. They also offer some of the fastest speeds on the market. The downside is that despite having fewer moving parts they do require more maintenance. Furthermore, they are not well suited for heavy or one-piece wood doors.
- Jackshaft openers
Although less popular than the other models, the jackshaft offers a quiet and highly dependable operation. Furthermore, they attach directly to the front wall of the automatic garage door. This means no overhead parts. The downside: they are still quite expensive compared to other models.
Horsepower may also be a concern for certain types of doors
While horsepower is more of a concern in industrial settings, some residential applications might need to consider horsepower. Most residential garage door openers operate on ½ hp. This is the standard and most popular motor speed. However, a heavily insulated door or a one-piece wood door can put extra stress on the motor. As such, this may cause more wear and tear.
If you have a heavily insulated door or a one-piece wood garage door, you might want to consider ¾ hp. This more powerful option is more durable but more expensive as well.
Finally, 1 hp models are ideal for the heaviest doors. They are typically used in industrial setting, or on oversized doors.
With so many options on the market, it is easy to get confused. To ensure you choose the right opener for your automatic garage door, we recommend consulting an expert. They will be able to better advise you on which opener is best suited for your automatic garage door. For a free quote or for more information, contact an Exitech expert today.