How to Fix a Garage Door Opener Sensor
Garage door sensors are found in just about any garage nowadays, as they are important safety mechanisms. Nonetheless, like any other electronic device, there are many ways they can break or not work effectively.
These sensors are safety mechanisms that stop a garage door from closing on people, children, and pets that are in the way of the garage door. You can typically find them along each side of the opening just above ankle level.
In the United States alone, there are 20,000 garage door injuries every year. The mechanism itself is often seen as a nuisance or a play thing by children, but it’s actually a gravely important device that can protect you and your family.
What Kinds of Things Can Go Wrong with Garage Door Sensors?
These devices can have numerous pitfalls. Whether through a jarring action or through gravity, the sensor can get out of kilter and not align correctly. They can suffer from electrical issues, along with just needing to be cleaned.
According to Discount Garage Door (Owasso), which does garage door opener repair in Owasso, you notice an issue with your garage door opener sensor, you’re going to want to first cut the power by clicking the fuses into the off position. These are located in the breaker box, which is typically found in the garage.
What Can I Do to Fix the Sensor?
If the sensors are no longer aligned, you’re going to want to use a screwdriver to loosen the screws on the mounts. Make sure not to completely unhinge them; you want the mounts to move up and down but not come off. Ideally, you want it to move by a little bit of force.
When you get the bracket over the sensor, tie a string to it. You are going to want to pull the string across to the other side. From here, you can attach the new sensor and then attach the string to it. Using a level, try to make the sides equivalent to each other.
Once the sensors are level, you’re going to want to tighten the bracket so the sensors don’t move. Make sure to keep the string tied so as to measure it with the bubble level once more, as the sensor could come out of alignment with the tightening of the screws.
How Can I Tell If There Is an Issue with the Electricity?
Most of these safety mechanisms have a sensor on it in the form of an indicator light. This can be either green or red, and if they aren’t activated this means that no electricity is getting to the sensor. This means you most likely have an issue with the electrical current flow to the sensor.
There could be a few problems with your electrical, but the most common is that the circuit breaker isn’t flipped. From here, you want to check the low voltage wiring found on the side of each sensor to make sure it is not either broken or burned.
If the sensor wiring is the issue, you’re going to need a small screwdriver, electrical pliers, and an adjustable wrench. Make sure the wrench isn’t too big, as it might need to get into a small spot. You’re also going to need a step ladder to reach the ceiling, and potentially some low-voltage wire in case of replacement.
The wiring along the ceiling and on the overhead unit could be faulty as well, so it is best to check these as well. You need to be careful when pulling on this wiring, as you might break the fasteners and rip out chunks of the ceiling.
How Do I Clean the Sensor?
If the sensor is not working because it is dirty, use a cloth and mild cleaner to and wipe off any gunk on or around the sensor. Be careful not to scratch the sensor mechanism itself, as this can cause irreparable damage.
How Much Does It Cost to Replace the Sensor?
If you don’t wish to replace it yourself, or feel it is too far out of your skill level, then seeking professional help is a good way to do this. Replacing these sensors can cost anywhere from $100 to $200.
While basic cleaning is required for these sensors, you might come across misaligned ones, or even electrical issues. With a little technique and a few tools, you can fix most problems related to these safety mechanisms.