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Garage Doors

Garage door

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


 Sectional garage door
Garage Doors Tampa FL
Garage Doors Tampa FL

Up-and-over garage door

A garage door is a large door on a garage that opens either manually or by an electric motor (a garage door opener). Garage doors are frequently large enough to accommodate automobiles and other vehicles. Small garage doors may be made in a single panel that tilts up and back across the garage ceiling. Larger doors are usually made in several jointed panels that roll up on tracks across the garage ceiling, or into a roll above the doorway. The operating mechanism is spring-loaded or counterbalanced to offset the weight of the door and reduce human or motor effort required to operate the door. Less commonly, some garage doors slide or swing horizontally. Doors are made of wood, metal, or fiberglass, and may be insulated to prevent heat loss. Warehouses, bus garages and locomotive sheds have larger versions.


Garage Doors Spring Hill FL
Garage Doors Spring Hill FL

An electric garage-door opener operates on the center track

A typical version of an overhead garage door used in the past would have been built as a one-piece panel.[1] The panel was mounted on each side with unequal parallelogram style hinge lifting mechanism. Newer versions of overhead garage doors are now generally built from several panels hinged together that roll along a system of tracks guided by rollers.[1] The weight of the door may be 400 lb (181.4 kg) or more, but is balanced by either a torsion spring system or a pair of extension springs.[2] A remote controlled motorized mechanism for opening garage doors adds convenience, safety, and security.[3]


The history of the garage door could date back to 450 BC when chariots were stored in gatehouses, but in the U.S. it arose around the start of the 20th century. As early as 1902, American manufacturers—including Cornell Iron Works—published catalogs featuring a “float over door.” Evidence of an upward-lifting garage door can be found in a catalog in 1906.[4]

Single panel garage doors

Single panel doors are constructed from one monolithic panel. From the closed position a single panel door swings up and overhead with a hinge on each side (known as jamb type hardware) to the fully open position. A disadvantage of monolithic panel doors is that the swing up arc of the door occurs partially outside the garage. This means a vehicle must stop and park several feet in front of the door to avoid being hit by the garage door when it is opened.

Single panel doors can also be installed with (one piece track type hardware) that folds the door back with a single horizontal track on each side (which is mounted at the top of the wood frame) and a roller, (mounted to the top of the door on each side. A hinge on each side that attaches to the bottom of each side of garage door. Using track hardware, a car can be parked much closer to the door, as the whole door, when in the open position, rests completely inside of the garage door header. Track type hardware has much less arc when raising and lowering the garage door as opposed jamb type hardware.[citation needed]

Sectional garage doors

Garage Doors St. Augustine FL
Garage Doors St. Augustine FL

Sectional garage door panel being installed

Sectional doors are usually constructed of three to eight panels and slide up and overhead. Sectional doors occupy exactly the same amount of internal garage space as a monolithic door. Sectional doors have two advantages over single panel monolithic doors:

  • Sectional doors do not require any space outside the garage to open. A vehicle may park very close to the garage before opening the door.
  • Each panel of a sectional door has its own connection to the door track. This increases reliability and robustness compared to monolithic doors, which have only a few track connections for the whole panel.

Garage doors can be made out of many materials, but steel, aluminum, wood, copper, glass, and vinyl (polyethylene) are the most popular materials. Some manufacturers incorporate foamed-in-place polyurethane insulation within the monolithic panel and sectional garage doors.

The side sliding sectional door[5]

  • A lot of space under the garage ceiling.
  • Can use the entire ceiling of the garage.
  • Fast access to the garage

Roller doors

Roll Up Doors Ocala FL
Roll Up Doors Ocala FL

Detail of roller door mechanism

Roller doors (“Sheet Doors”-USA) are usually constructed of corrugated steel. They evolved from cover window and door coverings.[4] Other materials can be used (e.g.; transparent corrugated fibreglass) where strong impact resistance is not required. Corrugations give the door strength against impacts. A typical single car garage roller door has a preloaded spring inside the rolling mechanism. The spring reduces the effort required to open the door. Larger roller doors in commercial premises are not sprung (except USA) and use a manual pulley and chain system or a geared motor to raise and lower (roll up and roll down) the door. Roller doors cannot be effectively insulated.

In the UK (and other parts of the EU), ‘insulated’ roller garage doors are available, using an aluminium lathe filled with polyurethane foam for thermal and acoustic insulation.

In terms of thermal insulation, the roller door has a typical insulation value of 4.9 to 5.2. A sheet steel garage door has a typical insulation value of 6.1 to 6.4. Application that need more thermal insulation typically use foam filled sectional garage door, which provide typical insulation values of 2.7 to 1.3.

Garage door materials, Morse Blvd Garage Doors and Services 352-816-7471

  • Aluminum garage doors are low-cost, light, rust-proof, and feature low-maintenance. They are prone to denting because aluminum is not strong and they are energy-inefficient since aluminum is a highly conductive material.
  • Fiberglass and vinyl garage doors are composite units, combining a steel core behind a fiberglass or vinyl skin. They have also polyurethane insulated base sections, or other type of foam insulation. These premium doors can match steel garage doors, and be a realistic imitation of wood (namely fiberglass units), but they may be more expensive than steel units.
  • Steel doors have become common and are available in a variety of sizes and styles, provide strength and security, are cost-competitive, and may have optional insulating value. Extra strength is available with two or three layers of galvanized steel with a low gauge number (23-24 gauge steel panels).[6]
  • Wood garage doors offer aesthetic appeal, but they are high-maintenance and may be expensive. Low-priced wood garage doors may warp and break easily.

Steel stamped construction

Garage Doors Tallahassee FL
Garage Doors Tallahassee FL

Sectional-type steel with exterior cladding overhead garage doors in the style of old carriage house doors

A common material for a new garage door is steel sheet formed to look like a raised panel wooden door. Steel doors are available in uninsulated, insulated, and double skin steel. A design mimicking carriage house doors has become popular since about 2002, and many manufacturers clad the exterior of a steel door with composite, vinyl boards, or DecamTrim to give it the appearance of wood. A more economical alternative for garage doors is steel stamped construction.[7]


In situations involving residential attached garages where the insulating value and the energy efficiency of a garage door is important to prevent overheating and freezing problems, as well as for comfort and energy savings.

Some manufacturers advertise very high insulating values for some of their garage doors (R-15 to R-17), but it may be true for only for some central sections. The actual R-values – for the entire door – are often 1/2 or 1/3 of the advertised value.

Torsion spring lift mechanism

A torsion spring counterbalance system consists of one or two tightly wound up springs on a steel shaft with cable drums at both ends. The entire apparatus mounts on the header wall above the garage door and has three supports: a center bearing plate with a steel or nylon bearing and two end bearing plates at both ends. The springs themselves consist of the steel wire with a stationary cone at one end and a winding cone at the other end. The stationary cone is attached to the center bearing plate. The winding cone consists of holes every 90 degrees for winding the springs and two set screws to secure the springs to the shaft. Steel counterbalance cables run from the roller brackets at the bottom corners of the door to a notch in the cable drums. When the door is raised, the springs unwind and the stored tension lifts the door by turning the shaft, thus turning the cable drums, wrapping the cables around the grooves on the cable drums. When the door is lowered, the cables unwrap from the drums and the springs are rewound to full tension.[8]

Life of torsion spring

Garage door manufacturers typically produce garage doors fitted with torsion springs that provide a minimum of 10,000 to 15,000 cycles and are guaranteed for three to seven years. One cycle is a single opening and closing sequence. Most manufacturers offer a 30,000 cycle spring. However, it is important to remember that if the weight of the garage door is increased by adding glass, additional insulation, or even several coats of paint, the life of the torsion spring may be greatly reduced. Additionally, springs at highly humid environments, such as coastal regions tend to have a significantly shorter cycle life, due to the corrosive cracking.

Other factors like poor garage door maintenance, loose tracks, or components shorten torsion spring life. Owners are advised to avoid applying grease to garage door tracks because that makes the wheels “skate” in the track instead of turning on their bearings. Only bearings, hinges, and spring wire require lubricant.

Extension spring lift mechanism

An extension spring counterbalance system consists of a pair of stretched springs running parallel to the horizontal tracks. The springs lift the door through a system of pulleys and counterbalance cables running from the bottom corner brackets through the pulleys. When the door is raised, the springs contract, thus lifting the door as the tension is released. Typically these springs are made of 11 gauge galvanized steel, and the lengths of these springs are based on the height of the garage door in question. Their lifting weight capacity can best be identified by the color that is painted on the ends of the springs.

Maintenance, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-816-7471

Maintenance of garage door is described in the manufacturer’s instructions and consists of periodic checks for correct operation, visual inspection of parts, and lubrication. [9][10]


Garage doors cause injury and property damage (including expensive damage to the door itself) in several different ways. The most common causes of injury from garage door systems include falling doors, pinch points, improperly adjusted opener force settings and safety eyes, attempts at do-it-yourself repair without the proper knowledge or tools, and uncontrolled release of spring tension (on extension spring systems).

A garage door with a broken spring, or the wrong strength spring, can fall. Because the effective mass of the door increases as the garage door sections transfer from the horizontal to vertical door tracks, a falling garage door accelerates rapidly. A free falling garage door can cause serious injury or death.

The sections and rollers on garage doors represent a major pinch hazard. Children should never be allowed near a moving garage door for this reason. On manually operated garage doors, handles should be installed vertically, to promote “vertical orientation of the hand”.

Mechanical garage door openers can pull or push a garage door with enough force to injure or kill people and pets if they become trapped. All modern openers are equipped with “force settings” that make the door reverse if it encounters too much resistance while closing or opening. Any garage door opener sold in the United States after 1992 requires safety eyes—sensors that prevent the door from closing if obstructed. Force settings should cause a door to stop or reverse on encountering more than approximately 20 lbs (9.07 kg) of resistance. Safety eyes should be installed a maximum of six inches above the ground. Many garage door injuries, and nearly all garage door related property damage, can be avoided by following these precautions.

Certain parts, especially springs, cables, bottom brackets, and spring anchor plates, are under extreme tension. Injuries can occur if parts under tension are removed.

Extension spring systems should always be restrained by a safety cable that runs through the middle of the spring, tying off to a solid point at the rear and front of the horizontal door track. Extension springs represent a hazard to bystanders when a spring, pulley, or cable breaks under tension. Metal parts from extension spring systems can suddenly be launched.

Garage door opener

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Garage Doors Miami FL
Garage Door Installation Miami FL

A residential garage door opener. The motor is in the box on the upper-right.

A garage door opener is a motorized device that opens and closes garage doors. Most are controlled by switches on the garage wall, as well as by remote controls carried by the owner.

The electric opener, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-816-7471

The electric overhead garage door opener was invented by C.G. Johnson in 1926 in Hartford City, Indiana.[1][2] Electric Garage Door openers did not become popular until Era Meter Company of Chicago offered one after World War II where the overhead garage door could be opened via a key pad located on a post at the end of the driveway or a switch inside the garage.[3]

As in an elevator, the electric motor does not provide most of the power to move a heavy garage door. Instead, most of door’s weight is offset by the counterbalance springs attached to the door. (Even manually operated garage doors have counterbalances; otherwise they would be too heavy for a person to open or close them.) In a typical design, torsion springs apply torque to a shaft, and that shaft applies a force to the garage door via steel counterbalance cables. The electric opener provides only a small amount of force to control how far the door opens and closes. In most cases, the garage door opener also holds the door closed in place of a lock.

The typical electric garage door opener consists of a power unit that contains the electric motor. The power unit attaches to a track. A trolley connected to an arm that attaches to the top of the garage door slides back and forth on the track, thus opening and closing the garage door. The trolley is pulled along the track by a chain, belt, or screw that turns when the motor is operated. A quick-release mechanism is attached to the trolley to allow the garage door to be disconnected from the opener for manual operation during a power failure or in case of emergency. Limit switches on the power unit control the distance the garage door opens and closes once the motor receives a signal from the remote control or wall push button to operate the door.[4]

The entire assembly hangs above the garage door. The power unit hangs from the ceiling and is located towards the rear of the garage. The end of the track on the opposite end of the power unit attaches to a header bracket that is attached to the header wall above the garage door. The power head is usually supported by punched angle iron.

Recently another type of opener, known as the jackshaft opener, has become more popular. This style of opener was used frequently on commercial doors but in recent years has been adapted for residential use. This style of opener consists of a motor that attaches to the side of the torsion rod and moves the door up and down by simply spinning the rod. These openers need a few extra components to function safely for residential use. These include a cable tension monitor, to detect when a cable is broken, and a separate locking mechanism to lock the door when it is fully closed. These have the advantage that they free up ceiling space that an ordinary opener and rail would occupy. These also have the disadvantage that the door must have a torsion rod to attach the motor to.

Types, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-217-6573

There are five types of garage door openers. Chain drive, belt drive, screw drive, direct drive, and jackshaft.

Chain drive openers have a chain (similar to a bicycle’s) that connects the trolley to the motor.

Belt drive openers use a rubber belt in place of a chain.

Screw drive openers have a long screw inside the track. The trolley connects to this screw.

Direct Drive openers have the motor installed inside the trolley and use a gear wheel to guide the trolley along a fixed chain.

Jackshaft openers mount on the wall at either end of the torsion bar.

Remote control, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-816-7471

The first wireless garage door openers were invented and developed by two US inventors at the same time, one in Illinois and the other in Washington state. They were unknown to each other.[5]

The first garage door opener remote controls were simple and consisted of a simple transmitter (the remote) and receiver which controlled the opener mechanism. The transmitter would transmit on a designated frequency; the receiver would listen for the radio signal, then open or close the garage, depending on the door position. The basic concept of this can be traced back to World War II. This type of system was used to detonate remote bombs. While novel at the time, the technology ran its course when garage door openers became widely available and used. Then, not only did a person open their garage door, they opened their neighbor’s garage door as well. While the garage door remote is low in power and in range, it was powerful enough to interfere with other receivers in the area.

The second stage of the wireless garage door opener system dealt with the shared frequency problem. To rectify this, multicode systems were developed. These systems required a garage door owner to preset a digital code by switching eight to twelve DIP switches on the receiver and transmitter. While these switches provided garage door systems with 28 = 256 to 212 = 4,096 different codes, they were not designed with high security in mind; the main intent was to avoid interference with similar systems nearby. Criminals were able to defeat the basic security of this system by trying different codes on a regular transmitter. They could also make code grabbers to record and re-transmit a signal, or code scanners, that would attempt every possible combination in a short time. Multicode openers became unpopular in areas where security was an issue, but due to their ease of programming, such openers are often used to operate such things as the gates in gated apartment complexes.

An intermediate stage of the garage door opener market between the second and third stages eliminated the DIP switches and used remotes preprogrammed to one out of roughly 3.5 billion unique codes. This system was backward compatible with the DIP switch remote codes, and each remote code (either with DIP switches or with a unique preprogrammed code) can be added into the receiver’s memory by pressing the learn button on the opener, and can be deleted from the receiver’s memory by holding it. While the code transmitted by the remote was still fixed, it was not changeable by the user (except if using legacy DIP switch remotes) and thus was much more difficult to duplicate unless two remotes shared the same code (which was very unlikely since the odds of two remotes sharing the same code was 1 out of roughly 3.5 billion except if legacy DIP switch remotes were used). This approach was an improvement over the fixed DIP switch codes, but was soon rendered obsolete when rolling code (which generates a new code on each press) devices became available.

The third stage of garage door opener market uses a frequency spectrum range between 300-400 MHz and most of the transmitter/receivers rely on hopping or rolling code technology. This approach prevents criminals from recording a code and replaying it to open a garage door. Since the signal is supposed to be significantly different from that of any other garage door remote control, manufacturers claim it is impossible for someone other than the owner of the remote to open the garage. When the transmitter sends a code, it generates a new code using an encoder. The receiver, after receiving a correct code, uses the same encoder with the same original seed to generate a new code that it will accept in the future. Because there is a high probability that someone might accidentally push the open button while not in range and desynchronize the code, the receiver generates look-a-head codes ahead of time. Rolling code is the same method of security used on the clickers of cars, and with some internet protocols for secure sites.

The fourth stage of garage door opener systems is similar to third stage, but it is limited to the 315 MHz frequency. The 315 MHz frequency range avoids interference from the Land Mobile Radio System (LMRS) used by the U.S. military.

The following standards are used by units manufactured by Chamberlain (including LiftMaster and Craftsman):

Dates System Color of programming button and LED on unit Color of LED on remote*
1984–1993 8-12 Dip Switch on 300-400 MHz white, gray, or yellow button with red LED red
1993–1997 Billion Code on 390 MHz green button with green or red LED green
1997–2005 Security+ (rolling code) on 390 MHz orange or red button with amber LED amber or none
2005–present Security+ (rolling code) on 315 MHz purple button with amber LED none
2011–present Security+ 2.0 (rolling code) on 310, 315, and 390 MHz yellow button with amber LED and yellow antenna wires red or blue

* Does not apply to keyless entry keypads or universal remotes.

Recent Chamberlain garage door openers that have Security+ 2.0 features also use a special serial protocol on wired connections rather than a simple switch closure.[6]

The following standards are used by units manufactured by Overhead Door Corporation and its subsidiary The Genie Companydagger:

Dates System
1985–1995 9–12 DIP Switch on 360, 380, or 390 MHz[7][8]
1995–2005 Intellicode/CodeDodger (rolling code) on 390 MHz
2005–present Intellicode/CodeDodger (rolling code) on 315 MHz
2011–present Intellicode 2/CodeDodger 2 (rolling code) on 315 and 390 MHz

dagger Note: There are no standard color codes for the learn button or LED on units manufactured by Overhead Door or Genie. All accessories made for later versions of Genie Intellicode and Overhead Door CodeDodger are backward compatible with previous generations of Intellicode and CodeDodger.

Cloning garage door opener remotes, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-217-6573

Garage Door Remotes The Villages Fl
Garage Door Remote The Villages FL

A typical photo of both the outer case and inner circuit of a garage door opener remote control.

Many garage door opener remote controls use fixed-code encoding which use DIP switches or soldering to do the address pins coding process, and they usually use pt2262/pt2272 or compatible ICs. For these fixed-code garage door opener remotes, one can easily clone the existing remote using a self-learning remote control duplicator (copy remote) which can make a copy of the remote using face-to-face copying.

Additional features, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-816-7471

Additional features that have been added over the years have included:

  • Automatic courtesy lights that turn on when the door opens (or via motion sensors) and automatically turn off after a preset delay
  • A remote lockout feature, which turns off the radio receiver while one is on vacation or away for an extended time.
  • The availability of accessories has increased, including such features as wireless keypads, key chain remotes, and solenoid-operated deadbolts to lock the door itself.

More sophisticated features are also available, such as an integrated carbon monoxide sensor to open the door in case of the garage being flooded with exhaust fumes. Other systems allow door activation over the Internet to allow home owners to open their garage door from their office for deliveries.

Another recent innovation in the garage door opener is a fingerprint-based wireless keypad. This unit attaches to the outside of the garage door on the jamb and allows users to open and close their doors with the press of a finger, rather than creating a personal identification number (PIN). This is especially helpful for families with children who may forget a code and are latchkey kids.

Safety, Morse Blvd Garage Doors 352-217-6573

The garage door is generally the largest moving object in a home. An improperly adjusted garage door opener can exert strong and deadly forces and might not reverse the garage door in an emergency. The manufacturer’s instructions provide guidance to the user on the proper adjustment and maintenance of the opener.

Garage door openers manufactured and installed in the United States since 1982 are required to provide a quick-release mechanism on the trolley that allows for the garage door to be disconnected from the garage door opener in the event of entrapment. [9] Garage door openers manufactured since 1982 are also required to reverse the garage door if it strikes a solid object.[10][11]

Under U.S. federal law (UL 325), garage door openers manufactured for the U.S. since 1993 must include a secondary safety reversing system, such as photoelectric eyes or sensors, mounted near the floor.[12] Other examples of safety reversing systems, allowed within the guideline of UL 325, include electric safety edges, which reverse with approximately 15 pounds of downward pressure, and a garage door and opener system without photo eyes, tested together, which reverses upon approximately 15 pounds of pressure.

Morse Blvd Garage Doors



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