Many garage door openers on the market today will make a fantastic addition to your home. Whether you’re looking for a product that delivers exceptional power, quiet operation, or unmatched convenience, we have you covered. We made this guide to showcase the best garage door openers out there, as well as some tips to help you find the perfect model for your home.
Why buy a garage door opener?
Simply put, getting your car in and out of your garage is a tedious exercise without a garage door opener. However, you probably already know this. What you may not know is that most quality garage doors feature a lifespan of at least 10 years, with many models lasting up to two decades if treated properly. So, while a great garage door opener may seem like a hefty investment to some, keep in mind that it will offer faithful service and simplify your life for many years to come.
What should you look for in a garage door opener?
- Drive Type: Most residential garage door openers will operate using a chain drive, belt drive, or screw drive. Chain drives are very reliable and inexpensive but tend to be noisier than other options. Belt drives are pricier but are incredibly quiet and feature fewer moving parts for added longevity. Finally, screw drives tend to be very heavy-duty and fairly quiet as well. However, screw drives are usually employed for heavier garage doors and are used less in residential settings.
- Motor Size: For optimal results, most garage door openers should be at least 1/2 horsepower. This will ensure they are built to last and have the power necessary to reliably open most garage doors. However, the larger and more powerful a motor, the less hard it will have to work to open and close your garage door. Thus, choosing a garage door opener with a powerful motor will often mean a longer product lifespan.
- Helpful Features: Many modern garage door openers can connect to Wi-Fi so that you can open the garage door with your smartphone. This can be extremely helpful if you lose your garage door remote. Additionally, finding a model that features good security features and quiet operation is a great idea. Safety sensors are also well worth the cost of admission, especially for families with pets and children. Before buying a garage door opener, make sure you check what it comes with to ensure the package suits your needs.
How powerful should my garage door opener’s motor be?
The amount of horsepower your garage door opener will need varies depending on the application. For typical single-car garage doors, a 1/2-horsepower option will usually be just fine. 1/2-horsepower motors will often work for double-car garages as well, depending on how heavy the door is. However, for many double-car garages, it is wise to invest in a garage door opener that utilizes at least 3/4 horsepower to get the job done efficiently. Heavy-duty applications, including carriage doors and other heavier garage doors, will likely require over 1 horsepower to ensure the garage door opener’s longevity and reliability.
Genie StealthDrive Connect 7155-TKV
This garage door opener features a heavy-duty motor with plenty of power as well as seamless compatibility with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
Pros: Featuring a potent combination of power and technology, the Genie StealthDrive impresses both in terms of its powerful motor and smart home-compatible design. It also possesses a rugged steel-reinforced belt drive that definitely appears to stand up to the test of time. However, the best thing about this garage door opener is the many options you have to operate it. You can use your smartphone, remote control, electronic wall unit, or keypad to get in or out of the garage, meaning even if your Wi-Fi is down, you will have easy access.
Cons: This garage door opener is slower to open and close than many other products out there. While this is probably a good thing for the unit’s longevity, it’s likely slow enough to irritate some who are used to having much speedier garage door openers. That being said, if you aren’t the impatient type, you might not even notice this quirk.
Bottom Line: Due to this garage door opener’s power and use of technology, it’s going to be a great fit for many, including those with heavy garage doors and smart homes. However, for those on a budget with an average-sized garage door, the 1.25-horsepower motor may be more powerful than you actually need.
beamUP Workhorse BU100
This budget-friendly garage door opener sports a 3/4-horsepower-equivalent DC motor and built-in 1,500-lumen energy-efficient LED security light.
Pros: Featuring a 3/4-horsepower-equivalent DC motor and integrated 1,500-lumen energy-efficient LED security lighting, this product offers a lot of value at its price point. It can also be installed easily without special tools, so even those that aren’t the handiest can get their garage door opener up and running with no problem. Given the budget price tag, this product’s durable chain drive and quiet operating volume also make it a no-brainer for those seeking to get the best bang for their buck.
Cons: While this is a very reliable option for your money, it does somewhat disappoint in terms of range. That being the case, you will have to be pretty close to the garage in order for the door to open when pulling up in your driveway if you’re using the remote control. Speaking of the remote, it only comes with one, making this product less appealing for multi-car households.
Bottom Line: This garage door opener doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles that premium products arrive with, but in terms of reliability and performance, it’s a great option for the price. Rugged chain drives are definitely a rarity when it comes to budget-friendly garage door openers, so if you’re looking for an inexpensive product that will last, this is your best option.
Chamberlain B550 Smart Garage Door Opener
Featuring a heavy-duty belt drive, this garage door opener can be opened using Wi-Fi, a garage remote, or a keypad. It's also incredibly quiet while operating.
Pros: The Chamberlain B550 Smart Garage Door Opener comes equipped with myQ technology, which allows you to operate or receive the status of your garage door from almost anywhere. This is a huge advantage since it enables you to open your garage door for friends and family without being physically present. It also scores major points for its included safety sensors, quiet operation, and impressive range that will allow you to open the garage from further away than many similar products.
Cons: In terms of lifting power, this garage door opener is not a wise choice for oversized garage doors or garage doors that are constructed with heavy material. However, for most average single or double-sized garage doors, it should prove to be a reliable option. Additionally, setting this product up with your favorite smart home apps and devices will require a small monthly subscription charge.
Bottom Line: While this garage door opener is not an ideal product for everyone, it’s an incredibly reliable choice that should exceed the needs of the average homeowner. It’s even a great unit for those who choose not to utilize the more advanced myQ features and comes with two remote controls so that you and your spouse won’t have to fight over who gets to keep one in their vehicle.
SKYLINK Atoms ATR-1611C
Despite having a durable chain drive, this garage door opener is whisper quiet. It also has a soft start and stop for added longevity.
Pros: This exceptionally quiet and budget-friendly offering from SKYLINK features a robust DC motor that is as quiet as they come. It also minimizes vibration well, thanks to its soft start and stop functionality. While its power is nothing to write home about, this unit features a rugged chain drive that promises many years of reliable service. It’s also one of the more easy to install options out there, thanks to its simplistic design.
Cons: Like most budget garage door openers, this one lacks the power for heavy-duty applications. Also, while it’s capable of lifting the average double door, it only comes with one remote included in the box. Luckily, this unit’s remotes can be purchased for much less than similar products, but this still might not be an ideal buy for multi-car households.
Bottom Line: If your garage is located under a room where people sleep or relax, a noisy garage door opener will be the bane of someone’s existence. Thankfully, this is a product that will give you no such trouble. It’s also a straightforward and durable option that’s great for those who prefer the simplicity of old-school garage door openers.
Chamberlain B970T Smart Garage Door Opener
Featuring an impressive 1.25-horsepower motor and easy-to-install safety sensors, this garage door opener is a product to consider.
Pros: This highly-rated contender from Chamberlain sports a powerful motor that is reliable enough for oversized garages, as well as heavy wooden garage doors. It also comes equipped with a backup battery to ensure your garage is accessible during a power outage. Despite its above-average power, it’s also an incredibly quiet unit while operating and sports a range that puts many other premium garage door openers to shame.
Cons: This garage door opener is fairly tricky to install and will likely require a helper if you plan on installing it yourself. It’s also slow to open and close, although this is not a bad trade-off, given this aids in the product’s longevity and quiet operating volume.
Bottom Line: Although this garage door opener is definitely on the expensive side, it brings enough to the table in terms of power and functionality to make it a great choice for those who don’t mind spending a little extra. While its belt drive might not be the most durable option around, this garage door opener won’t wake the baby or leave something to be desired in terms of operating range.
Your garage door opener will likely last a long time, so making an educated purchase is key. While power, operating volume, and functionality are all important, ensuring that a product meets both the needs of your garage door and your family will put you on the right track to finding the perfect product for you.