Best Garage Door Openers: No More Struggling in the Rain or Snow
Gain access to your home with these high-quality garage door openers
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BY Lisa Conant / LAST UPDATED ON October 15, 2021
For many Americans, the garage is the most used entrance to the home. So, it makes sense that you want to get in and out of it easily and from the comfort of your warm, dry vehicle. No one enjoys getting out in the pouring rain, pitch black, or driving snow to struggle to get their garage door up or down. Today’s garage door openers provide powerful and reliable function at very affordable prices. With so many to choose from, we’ve taken the liberty of compiling a list of our top picks and put together a handy buying guide to help you know exactly what to look for to ensure you’re not stuck outside at the worst possible time because you bought a lemon.
This garage door opener adds convenience with the ability to pair it with a smartphone over Wi-Fi. It also includes remotes and a backup battery in case of power outages.
- Backed by a great warranty on parts and accessories
- Easily installs without the need for additional hardware
- Smartphone compatible for convenient remote operation
- Smartphone control can be somewhat annoying
- Customer service response times are questionable
This garage door opener features a durable anti-break-in chain drive garage door opener. It is extremely quiet and has a powerful DC motor. You can use it with or without Wi-Fi.
- The built-in LED light offers long-lasting illumination
- The remote control is equipped with rolling code technology
- The soft-start and soft-stop functions minimize maintenance
- The chain may break and become a hazard
- The garage door opener’s LED light is too bright
- The opener is not compatible with every garage door
This smart garage opener has corner-to-corner lighting through its three, 100-lumen LED lights for super bright illumination at night. It’s also compatible with your Amazon Prime account.
- Remotes come preprogrammed for easy and quick installation and use
- By linking to your Amazon account, you can opt to have packages securely delivered right to your garage
- Strong and quiet operation
- High price point
- Compatible app is not free of charge
- Will need to purchase an additional extension kit if your garage door is more than 7 feet
Why Trust Us
Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Best Garage Door Openers Reviews & Recommendations
How We Selected The Products
We weeded through dozens of garage door openers on the market. In the end, we decided to select only those products that were manufactured by well-known companies with a solid track record of producing reliable and high-quality garage door openers. We also decided to focus on more technologically advanced models that could link up to Wi-Fi or smartphone apps for remote operation, since that is such a big part of everyone’s day-to-day lives at this point. We also limited our selections to a price range to provide you with top-quality affordable options. And lastly, we sifted through thousands of user comments regarding their satisfaction and user-friendliness.
Our product selections, rankings, and awards for this story are based on research. While we haven’t conducted real-world testing yet on all of these products yet, we’ve looked at consumer testimonials and data, tutorials, and general discussions on social media and in forums. We also consider price and specification in the context of the segment. And, of course, we rely on our institutional knowledge of the automotive landscape to weed out weak products.
Best Garage Door Openers Buying Guide & FAQs
When it comes to getting the best garage door opener, it’s not a one-size fits all scenario. Do you want speed and power or do you want something quiet and slower that won’t disturb your sleeping family and neighbors? How big of a garage door do you have? Do you need to purchase multiple units? The following guide will help you confidently select the best garage door opener to suit your particular needs and wants.
Types of Garage Door Openers
A belt driven garage door opener uses a rubber belt to move the door, which results in a smoother, quieter operation. The rubber belt is reinforced with steel and is strong and durable. There is no metal-on-metal contact, which minimizes vibrations. This type of garage door opener is a good option for homes that have bedrooms or living rooms located next to the garage. It has fewer maintenance needs because it’s designed with fewer moving parts. The downside is that it's costlier.
To raise or lower the garage door, a chain driven garage door opener uses a metal chain connected to the motor to drive the trolley. A chain drive opener is the most common and the most affordable. It is also compatible with most garage doors. However, it’s noisier and generates more vibrations than other openers. This is because there is more metal-to-metal contact. This garage door opener is ideal for detached garages or those that aren’t located next to living quarters. To run smoothly, its metal chain requires regular maintenance.
This garage door opener’s lifting mechanism uses a threaded steel rod to open or close the door. The rotating rod steers the trolley on the track to lower or raise the door. Like a belt drive opener, this opener requires little maintenance since it has fewer moving parts. It is not as noisy as a chain drive opener but is louder than a belt drive opener. It is also not as fast as a chain drive garage door opener. However, it has the most power output because its direct drive system moves more power from the motor and there’s no gear-reduction system.
Originally known as the Alliance Manufacturing Company, Genie was founded in 1923 in Alliance, Ohio. The company produced its first garage door opener in 1954 and named it Genie. It was a residential, radio-controlled opener and in 1958, it made its first screw drive opener. The company changed its name to Genie Home Products in 1985 and in 1994, it was bought by the Overhead Door Corporation. The company headquarters are in Mt. Hope, Ohio.
Chamberlain Group is the corporate parent company of Chamberlain, LiftMaster, Grifco, and Merlin. Chamberlain’s products have interchangeable gears and circuit boards. The brand’s "myQ" technology is featured in its garage door openers and is available as a smartphone application. It can be added to a Wi-Fi network, allowing you to remotely control your garage door opener.
Located in Vietnam, Skylink Manufacturing has been around since 1990. It has satellite offices in both Mississauga, Ontario, Canada and Ontario, California.
Modern garage door openers are equipped with numerous features for the user’s convenience, including so-called “smart technology.” An automatic garage door opener featuring smart technology can be controlled using a smartphone, computer, or in-home smart speaker.
The lifting power of a garage door opener is measured in horsepower (HP). The horsepower determines the speed at which the garage door opens. This usually depends on how heavy and large the garage door is. Openers with 1/2 horsepower are the most popular as they can lift garage doors in most homes, though higher-powered openers are available.
The size and type of opener determines the amount of noise the door produces. If you are looking for a garage door opener that doesn’t produce any noise, get a jackshaft or a belt drive garage door opener. These are the quietest openers. Chain drive garage door openers are the noisiest.
Look for a garage door opener that offers several different security features that will protect you and your family from dangerous malfunctions. Your garage door opener should come equipped with sensors that automatically stop the door from closing if a child, pet, or obstacle gets in the way. Rolling security codes in each remote prevent thieves or intruders from figuring out how to enter your garage without permission. Bright LED lights on the door opener will ensure safety by illuminating your garage brightly at night. Emergency battery power will allow your garage door opener to work, even in a power failure so that you can get in or out of your house as needed.
Q: How do I install a garage door opener?
Most of today’s garage door openers come with all necessary mounting brackets and hardware in order for you to install it easily on your own or with the help of a partner. Some companies even provide links to online tutorials or videos to walk you through the process step by step.
Q: Do garage door openers have a weight limit?
Yes, garage door openers are limited by how much weight they can carry. You will need to know the full weight of your garage door before purchasing and installing a new opener to ensure it can open it properly.
If you’re in the market for a high-performance, reliable, and long-lasting garage door opener that’s offered at a decent price point, our top pick is the Genie StealthDrive Connect 7155-TKV Ultra-Quiet Strong Garage Door Opener. This garage door opener adds convenience with the ability to pair it with a smartphone over Wi-Fi. It also includes remotes and a backup battery in case of power outages.
For a great budget-friendly model that works just as well as some of its higher priced counterparts, consider the SkyLink Atoms Garage Door Opener.