How Long Do Garage Door Openers Last?

Last updatedLast updated: September 03, 2021
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The service life of a garage door is dependent on the spring resource. Many manufacturers install a spring in the door structure that can withstand 10,000 opening and closing cycles, and some are so robust that they can withstand 25,000 cycles. Knowing how many cycles a particular model is designed for, it’s easy to make a calculation. The average service life of a garage door ranges from 6 to 25 years with moderate use.

But how long do garage door openers last? Are they supposed to keep working after a decade or two, or will openers last a lifetime? We will also consider factors that determine how many cycles they can withstand, features of common door openers malfunctions, and when you should consider replacing them. Get ready for this ride. We will start by briefly discussing the different garage door openers that exist to get a broad overview.

How Long Do Garage Door Openers Last?Types of Garage Door Openers

This list of garage door openers is by no means exhaustive; you can check for the best types of garage door openers recommended by experts.

Torsion Spring Automatic Garage Door Opener

Torsion spring automatic garage door openers are way too stylish, but they are found in major brands and are expensive to install. They operate using torsion springs, their operation is faster, and they are less noisy. One-time maintenance to properly align the springs is necessary.

Chain Drive Garage Door Opener

The chain drive type of garage door opener is by far the most popular because of its ability to lift different garage doors. Their cost is advantageous and reasonable. As the name suggests, a pulley is made up that pulls or pushes your door, and a cart that moves the door up and down.

Belt Drive Garage Door Opener

This type of garage door opener is extraordinary compared to other openers. They use a belt rather than a chain to move your door; they are fast and suitable for light garage doors as they cannot support heavy doors. They are quite expensive and have moving parts that require frequent maintenance. They don’t make noise as they are made from a rubber belt reinforced with metal. They are suitable for attached and detached residential garages.

Jackshaft Type Garage Door Opener

It is one of the most unique and reliable door openers, and it works fast. Although these door openers are expensive, the quality of the materials used in their manufacture and their sturdiness can support all types of door weights. It is suitable for cathedral doors or used for high storage.

Screw Drive Garage Door Opener

They consist of a long threaded metal rod that allows the door to open or close and last for a long time, resulting in minimal maintenance. They are moderately priced. They are suitable for light doors because their threads can wear out quickly if put under pressure. Their main drawback is the level of noise they tend to produce.

Average Door Lifespan

Usually, a well-maintained electric garage door opener has a lifespan of 10 to 15 years. This may not seem like a long time, but some companies are slow to improve their products. that being said, not many people care about their openers as long as they work well. But a garage door opener does not last forever, and it is important to maintain it regularly, regardless of its age, and replace it when the time comes.


It is advisable always to note the date of manufacture of any type of device to watch for signs of wear and replace parts if necessary. If you do not know your opener’s manufacture date, you can check for it by inspecting the metal motor housing near the garage ceiling.

What Can Reduce the Garage Door Opener’s Life Expectancy?

Frequency of Use: The more the garage door is used, the faster it will start to wear and tear, which might eventually lead to its breakdown if left unattended. To prolong the life expectancy of your garage door opener, you need to minimize its frequency of use as much as possible.

Quality of Maintainance: The quality of maintenance of any device determines how long it will last. A garage door opener is not different; its durability depends on well you maintain the garage door in totality. A well-maintained door will outlast the garage door’s average lifespan, while poorly maintained ones might not even outlive the warranty period. Proper maintenance of garage door is carried out by:

  • Lubricating the components. It is essential to lubricate the moving parts of your garage door at least once a year;
  • Checking the automatic shutdown system;
  • Testing the springs;
  • Cleaning the weatherstripping;
  • Cleaning the garage door.Dislodging snow and water.

Common Malfunction of Garage Door Openers

How Long Do Garage Door Openers Last?Here are the common causes that can explain some of the problems of garage door openers;

  1. Power failure or disconnection.

If your opener doesn’t seem to be working, first check if the power supply is the cause. In the event of a breakdown (and if your opener does not have an emergency battery), deactivate your opener by pulling the red emergency cord and operate the door manually. If you have a latch (on the side of the door), lock the garage door with it and unplug the opener so that no one tries to open the door when it is locked.

  1. You operate your transmitter remotely, but your door does not move.

The battery probably needs to be replaced. If you don’t have a battery handy, use your numeric keypad (exterior), which functions as a remote transmitter.

  1. The safety sensors on the opener are flashing, or they are off.

Operate the garage door opener only if the sensor harness is functional. The light should always be on. Flashing means that your garage door may be overturning. If the sensor indicator light does not work (stays off), check whether any object obstructs the field of both sensors. Then make sure the sensors’ alignment is correct and, if they are not aligned correctly, align them so that they are perfectly opposite each other. It is this misalignment of the photoelectric system that causes the door to stand still.

  1. You are a few feet from your door, you operate the transmitter remotely, and nothing works.

There are at least three possibilities:

  • The battery of your transmitter is flat. Replace it.
  • You may not have pressed the button long enough. Press 2 seconds or more to be sure the opener receiver antenna has received the signal.
  • Interference may be preventing the signal from reaching the antenna, or the antenna has not come out of the motor housing. Consult a garage door technician to extend your receiving antenna outside the garage.
  1. Your door does not close completely on the ground and performs a reverse movement halfway.

In order to sort it out, you must do the following:

  • Free any object that could obstruct the field of the door.
  • Check if the safety sensors are functioning correctly.
  • Use a screwdriver to adjust the garage door’s up and down (buttons with up and down arrows located on the side of the motor). Follow the manufacturer’s instructions in the service manual you can find online.
  1. Your garage door opener is making a disturbing noise

A garage door should still work quietly, even if it is over ten years old. Regularly lubricate and inspect cables, casters, and rails. If one of the components is worn, it could damage your door and your opener because every part has a role to play in the opening/closing system. If the noise persists, immediately contact a garage door specialist to have the problem corrected quickly.

For your garage door opener to remain functional, it is essential to carry out regular maintenance (twice a year) or have it carried out by a technician qualified in the field.

Reasons to Replace a Garage Door

Be aware that the more you use your opener, especially if it is generally used as a front door to your home, the faster it will wear out. An opener’s lifespan depends on its use and the quality of its maintenance, as with any appliance in your home. Here are some factors to watch out for that could be part of the reasons for having your garage door opener repaired or replaced:

Spring System

The life cycle of a spring system usually is 6 to 7 years. The Torsion-type spring is located above the garage door head or at the end of horizontal tracks. The Extension type spring is located above the two horizontal rails. If you see rust stains on the springs or your garage is not heated, have your installation checked to ensure all parts are working properly.

Noise

If your garage door makes unpleasant or unusual noises when you activate your opener, it is a sign that your opener is not working properly. We advise you to have your garage door opener examined by a professional.

Please note that today, very quiet door openers are available, such as those with a rubber strap, which is solidified with metal wires. There is also a Jackshaft-type door opener specially designed for residential garages placed on the door’s side. These options are worth considering if you need to replace your opener, especially if a bedroom or living room is located above your garage.

Opener Manufacturer is No Longer in Business

If you need to replace parts, your opener model may no longer be available in the market. We recommend that you check with LiftMaster / Chamberlain Garage Door Openers, a reliable company that has been in existence since 1954. If you cannot find the parts you need, consider replacing your opener.

Photoelectric Automatic Reversing System

This system is much safer than a mechanical reversing system. This system helps, among other things, to protect your children and pets because every year, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), there are many injuries and even deaths as a result of children and animals found stuck under a garage door.

When your door is due for replacement, and you seek a new garage door opener, consider the Genie ChainMax 3022-TKH that experts highly recommend because of its smooth operation and safety features. Also, you might want to try a Wi-Fi-controlled unit, such as the Chamberlain B970.

Final Thoughts

We hope that this article gave you the answer on the average lifespan of garage door opener. However, if your current opener was manufactured before 1993, you should consider replacing it. Thus, you should check out Genie ChainMax 3022-TKH and the Chamberlain B970 as replacement options.
If you are looking for other ways to upgrade your system, you can install the outdoor motion sensor lights that will make it more convenient for your to park your vehicle!

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