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When Garage Door Openers and Remotes Fail: How to Decipher What the Problem Is

The more complex garage door remotes are, the more problems they tend to have when they fail. If your garage door remote suddenly stops working, it may not be your garage door opener that needs repair. Here is how you can figure out if the problem is your garage door opener or the remote.

Deciphering Problems with Your Opener

Something as simple as a plug that is not plugged in all the way can be the problem when your opener does not work. Surprisingly, if your garage door opener has an attached light, the light may still go on and off even if the opener itself does not seem to be functioning.

To test the opener, do the following:

  • Check the plug for the opener. Pull the plug all the way out, plug it back in, and test the opener. If it still doesn’t work, plug the opener into a different outlet using an extension cord. If it works in any other outlet, the problem is with your connection and not with the opener.
  • If the opener still does not work when you plug it into several other outlets, there is a power issue inside the opener (or there is a problem with the remote). Using the manual opening switch inside your garage can help you determine if the problem is with the opener itself or with the remote control.

When the manual switch does not work with the opener plugged into other outlets, then the problem is definitely with the opener itself.

Testing the Remote Control

When you use the remote control, the remote is operating on a radio frequency that signals your brand and model of door opener. This is why it is not uncommon for neighbors to find that their garage doors are open or closed when they do not remember leaving the doors that way. Other neighbors with the same garage door opener and remotes can open and close your doors. Likewise, the openers can get jammed up by other makes and models of garage door openers because the radio frequencies are interfering. If your neighbors have recently installed a garage door opener and then your opener suddenly doesn’t work, you may want to check this out with them.

Otherwise, there are less complicated ways to test the efficacy and functionality of your garage door opener remote:

  • Stand closer to the door opener. Sometimes these remotes are constructed to only send signals a short distance.
  • Change the batteries in the remote if you have a) never changed them, or b) cannot recall when you changed them last.
  • Get a duplicate remote and check to see if the new duplicate remote works. (The electrical circuitry in the original remote may be shot.)

If none of the above seem to be the problem, then call in a professional from a company like Zook Garage Door Services.