Home » Design Tips » What's New in Garage Door Openers?
OUR automatic garage door opener works just fine, you say. It's opened and closed your door reliably for years. All you've needed to do is change the light bulb or the battery in the remote control once in a while.
Replace it? What more could you want? What could be new in garage door openers?
If your opener was installed prior to 1993, you may be missing out on a great safety feature that is now required on all U.S. and Canadian openers manufactured since that time – photoelectric eyes or some other device that provides equivalent protection against entrapment.
Photoelectric eyes – mounted about six inches above the floor – cast an invisible beam across the door opening. If a door is closing and, for example, a child or pet were running underneath the door, they would "break" the beam, causing the door to automatically reverse.
Because your garage door is the heaviest and largest moving part of your home, a new opener with entrapment protection makes a great deal of sense, particularly if you have small children. (Note – It's important, too, to teach children that the garage door system is not a plaything.)
Your local professional door dealer can help you choose the system that makes sense for your needs – and he or she is also fully trained to install and test the system for optimum performance and safe operation.
KEY TO THE CASTLE
Many folks don't carry a house key anymore. Why? Many find it easier to enter their homes through the garage door, using a remote control or an external keypad. These devices have become the new "house keys" for many homeowners.
These keypads are especially popular with "latchkey kids" – kids who come home to an empty house. Millions of children come home every day and enter their homes using an exterior garage door keypad. In fact, one survey shows that 33 percent of parents whose homes have external keypads say that the keypad is the number one way for children to enter the homes.
"Latchkey kids are now keypad kids," said Chris Long, editor of Door & Operator Industry, an industry magazine.
"Keypad use has more than doubled in the past 10 years," said Tom Wadsworth, editor of Door & Access Systems, another magazine for the garage door industry. "Convenience is the driving factor behind this trend – no more worries about lost or stolen keys."
New fingerprint-activated keyless entry pads have created a whole new level of convenience. Now, you don't even need to memorize an entry code. Convenience is literally at your fingertip.
YOU'VE ALWAYS GOT THE POWER
Entrapment protection and keypads are great, you may say – but how do we open and close the garage door when a storm rolls through and knocks out the power?
Today's openers won't keep you waiting outside in the rain, or force you to manually disengage the opener and lift the door by hand. A popular accessory sold with new openers is a battery back-up system that allows you to use your garage door opener 24/7, regardless of any loss of power to your home.
Speaking of power, chances are you have a surge protector in your home to safeguard your computer from voltage spikes. Surge protectors are also available to shield your garage door opener as well, keeping your door operating system running and protecting your investment.
IF YOU CAN DREAM IT ...
It's probably available. Garage door opener accessories abound. Would you like your garage door opener to switch on lights in your home as you're pulling up the driveway? Or alert you if you left the garage door open? It's all now possible with new garage door accessories. You can even make a fashion statement with your garage door remote by customizing it to match your car's interior.
Where can you learn more about and find these accessories? Check the DASMA members who manufacture garage door operating systems and accessories:
|Manufacturers of garage door
openers and accessories
|The Chamberlain Group
|Martec Access Products
|Somfy International/Simu U.S.
|Sommer Home Automation
or contact a professional door dealer in your area.
And for the latest information, be sure to keep checking GarageWowNow.com!
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