I don’t know where exactly to put this so I guess a blog entry is the best. First of all I am just a guy in Maine with an 18 ft wood garage door. Heavy and older. (the door… I guess me too) Anyway, I am not in any way affiliated with any garage door people or companies or stores that sell them.
I’ve had a few garage door openers. All chain drives 1/2 and 3/4 horse ones. Genie, Craftsman… etc. None have lasted more than a few years. And all didn’t really always work that well. Some weak point eventually breaks. My springs are adjusted good but they are a little weak. I can easily open it by hand.
I took a chance on a new garage door opener from Germany. Sommers (google it for picts and videos). It’s a very unconventional design compared to chain, belt, or screw drive doors. It has a fixed chain, stretched tight in an aluminum channel and a DC motor with a gear rides up and down the chain. Kind of like an upsidedown cog train on a track.
The motor which is 24 volt DC is in the unit that runs on the track and is geared to be very powerful. At the end of the track is a box with lights and power supply for the motor. The only moving part is the gear. No chains or screws turning and loosening up. The unit is silent. When I use the button on the back of the garage (as I come out of the house) to open the door. I can’t tell it’s working until I see the door open. Adjusting the up and down limit is simple compared to other units. A small stop on the track hits a cut off switch. One on either end of the track for up limit and down limit. The stops slide up and down the track and lock with a screw. You let it go up and down twice on it’s own to learn it’s parameters. It sort of learns it settings on it’s own. The unit has a LIFETIME WARRANTY except for lightning hits. And so far it’s working flawlessly. And as you can imagine, installing it is like setting up a train track. Easy. Very little assembly. And it’s well made. Comes with wired button and two remotes.
I just had to share this as I have a feeling it may be the last opener I have to buy for awhile. Maybe someone else in my position might benefit by this news as garage door openers can be frustrating at times.
It’s available on line. Available at some Lowes, and at all Lowes if you order it. Not all of them carry it in store. $228 as of this writing.