Garage door opens or closes on its own.
It really does happen! Your garage door can literally open or close all by itself! This phenomenon can be quite upsetting when it happens to you. You might be inside the house and hear the garage door open. You think for a minute that it’s your spouse or grown child coming home. No one walks in. You go out to the garage and see that it’s empty. Did they leave or change their mind? Why leave the door wide open for all to see? Another scenario could involve you coming home and finding your garage door already open. This one really scares people as they don’t know if someone is inside the house or not! Here at Optimal Garage Repair we get calls from worried customers from time to time. They want to know what causes this strange garage door behavior and what they can do to make it end.
No Ghosts Involved!
No, your house is not haunted! There are reasonable explanations and fixable solutions for this unusual behavior. Read on and see what some of the causes are and what you can do about them. Unassisted garage door openings and closings are not limited to the Downtown Miami, FL area; they happen everywhere in the world, so it’s not a regional issue at all.
You are now sharing a frequency!
One of the most common causes of unassisted garage door activity stems from suddenly having someone else share your same garage door remote frequency. This causes your garage door to respond to their remote and vice-versa. If you have a newer opener unit and remote, this won’t happen as these have rolling frequencies that change all the time. It is the older remotes (pre 1993) that allow you to set and re-set your code that this happens to.
There are limited code variations to set in these older remotes and if someone on your street or block sets theirs to accidentally match yours, you are bound to experience garage door activity when they are simply trying to use theirs. It’s good to keep in mind that if you are experiencing unassisted garage door activity, then someone else is too when you use your garage door opener remote! By finding out just who this is and contacting them, you can easily solve both of your problems.
Check your remote!
What if you have a newer opener system and remote control? What then? Check it anyway! Optimal Garage Repair recommends that you check the strength of your battery. Many think that the battery either works or it doesn’t. It’s not that simple. Low battery power can result in a random signal being sent. This alone could result in strange garage door activity.
This applies not only to you, but to your neighbors as well. You can check your battery by testing it with a home battery tester. If you don’t have one, try taking it to a local hardware or home improvement store. They usually test for free and you always have the option of getting your replacement at their store. If your remote has battery leakage inside, clean it up with a cotton swab dipped in vinegar or lemon juice. This will gently remove any acid that is on the terminals. With clean terminals and a new battery, your remote will stop sending weak, random signals that can disrupt your normal garage door workings.
You might also have an electrical short in either your wall button or in one of the transmitters. What’s odd about these shorts in your electrical system is that they can cause your garage door to open again after fully closing. This is especially troubling when you back out of your driveway and actually watch your garage door close, only to have it open back up after you’ve driven off!
Is it the transmitter?
Here’s a simple way to check if the short is in your transmitter. Remove the battery from your remote and operate the garage door from the wall button. If it operates fine, it was your transmitter. If not, the short may be located in the circuit board, the wall button wiring, the wall button itself or the wired keypad. The usual method of finding where your short is, is to test each component and do a process of elimination for each one. You can do this yourself if you know how. If not, you can either refer to your opener’s owner manual or you can look up the model number to your system and find the manual online by entering the keywords “owner’s manual (brand and model number) in Google.
How much time do you have for this?
Many people love “Do it yourself” tasks and if you do, and have the time, try discovering and fixing your electrical short on your own. For those that don’t like self-inflicted jobs like this, or are too busy, we recommend that you call your favorite garage door repair shop and let their expert technicians handle the issue. Keep in mind that an established local service can provide time savings, money savings and peace of mind in knowing that the job was done right and to your complete satisfaction.
Start locking your garage’s inner door!
One smart thing you can start doing immediately, is locking your garage’s inner door that leads into the house. Get into the habit of doing this whether your garage door works correctly or not. Remember one of our first examples of coming home to an already open garage door? Now, imagine if this happened after dark and the door leading into the house was left unlocked! It’s so easy for an unwanted intruder to simply walk into your home and ransack it, wait for you, or kidnap one of your children! Don’t risk that! Good habits start by repeated action so start locking this door every time you leave your home or when you retire for the night. Be smart and be safer!