3 Common Types of Garage Door Openers

Whether your system is acting up or you just need an upgrade, deciding on a new garage opener can be tricky. With the breadth of options currently on the market, picking the right one can feel like an impossible choice unless you learn the differences between them all.

Whatever you’re in the market for, this article will help you to determine which garage door opener might be right for your home.

Motors and Drives

The first thing to learn when you’re considering a garage door opener is which types of drive and motor systems are available. Finding an opener that is quieter, smoother, and more reliable will depend on understanding how the motor and drive affect its operation.

There are two types of motors available for garage door openers:  Alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC).

AC motors are powered straight from the wall outlet, making them more powerful and less expensive to operate. Unfortunately, AC-powered openers are bigger, heavier, and louder, since they require more components. Though they are very durable, they require more costly repairs to keep them in optimal operation.

Until recently, AC motors were the only choice on the market, but DC-powered garage door openers have now become standard. DC motors require a battery to provide constant voltage, making them more energy-efficient, but less cost-effective overall.

Garage Door Opener Types

Now that you know the difference between AC and DC motors, it’s time to discuss the different drive types. There are three drive types for garage door openers:

  • Chain drive
  • Belt drive
  • Screw drive

Though they all provide the same basic functions —  opening the garage door — each system has a different way of achieving this goal. No one type is better than the other, so finding the most fitting type for your home depends on what you prioritize the most.

Chain Drive Opener

Chain drive garage door openers use a bicycle-like chain to move the door open and closed. Though they are among the oldest drive mechanisms on the market, they are also the most convenient, since they are suitable for most garage doors.

Chain drive systems are known for their superior lifting capabilities and are the only design that can handle the heaviest doors. As garage door experts, we recommend LiftMaster and their PRO-LINE garage door openers as a top choice for ease of use, reliability, and durability

Belt Drive Opener

Belt drive garage door openers are similar in design to chain drive openers, except they use a steel-reinforced rubber belt rather than a chain. If reducing noise is your top priority, a DC-powered belt drive opener may be the best choice.

Screw Drive Opener

Screw drive garage door openers use a threaded steel rod lifting mechanism. As the screw rotates, it moves the trolley along the guide to raise and lower the door. These garage door openers offer the most power and fastest operating speeds of all the systems, making them useful for wider, heavier doors. Screw drive systems are a bit noisier than belt drive types but much quieter than chain types. 

Turn to Larry Myers Garage Doors for Your Garage Needs

From ongoing vibrations to the mechanism breaking down altogether, there are plenty of signs that your garage door opener needs to be replaced. When it’s time to choose a new garage door opener, contact Larry Myers Garage Door. Call us today to schedule service.