The automatic garage door is a modern marvel, one most people hardly realize until it starts doing something unexpected. The garage door is designed to open when you want to pass through and remain securely closed until someone hits the right button. However, that security and convenience evaporate when your garage starts opening or closing on its own.
There are a handful of possible reasons why a garage door might open on its own or keep opening on its own. Join us as we run through these possibilities in order of most likely to least likely. Once you track down the problem, the solution will not be far behind.
Garage Doors are Designed to Open
The first thing to understand, for many of these causes, is that garage doors are designed to open when the command is in question. This is a safety precaution to ensure that person, pet, or possession is crushed by the door closing on command. Therefore, garage doors installed after 1993 have a two-factor safety mechanism designed to bounce that door open. The first is a beam sensor that opens the door when the beam is interrupted. The second is a motor sensor designed to open the door if it senses resistance before completely closing.
1) Something Triggers the Beam Sensor
The photoelectric beam sensor of your garage door is made of two components, a beam projector and a beam sensor. If something interrupts these beams, the garage door will assume that there is something in the way of closing and pop right back open again. Even if that something is a stray leaf or a pile of snow.
2) The Beam Sensor is Misaligned
You garage door might open on its own if the photoelectric array is misaligned, as well. If the beams being sent do not hit the sensors, the garage door gets the mistaken impression that something is in the way. These sensors are sometimes easy to knock out of alignment. Realign the photoelectric sensor array and see if your garage stops opening.
3) The Motor Sensor has Bumped Something
If the garage door opens again when it is almost completely closed, the problem may be the motor sensor instead. If the motor feels resistance before the door is considered fully closed, the whole door will start to open again.
4) The Garage Door Button is Malfunctioning
Garage door buttons often look like a doorbell inside your garage, and these can get dirty or malfunction causing your garage door troubles. A sticky or stuck door button will cause the door to open and close until the button is un-stuck.
5) The Garage Door Remote is Being Pressed
Find all the garage door remotes and check to see if something is pressing them. Remember that it is possible to “butt dial” your garage as well as your phone. There might be a remote lost in the couch, a purse, or the seat of the car as well.
6) There is an Electrical Problem in the System
Your garage door button or the automatic opener might be experiencing an electrical problem, sending false signals for the door to open. This can be difficult to hunt down but is more likely if other aspects of your home are also experiencing electrical problems.
7) A Neighbor is Using the Same Control Signal
Finally, it is rare but possible that a nearby neighbor’s garage door remote is sharing the same exact signal that yours is. This doesn’t happen often, but just often enough to be worth mentioning before calling your garage door haunted. Check around with your closets neighbors just be sure.
If your garage door is not behaving the way it should and the answer does not become clear after following this troubleshooting guide, contact us today! Our Minneapolis team will be happy to help you hunt down the problem with your garage door, repair any broken components, or install new components to ensure your garage door stays closed when you want it closed.