The 8 Best Garage Door Openers to Buy in 2018

Shop for the best garage door openers to buy that will make your life easier

Straight on perspective of a remodeled garage
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In this day and age, we are all about convenience. When it comes to getting home after a long day with a trunkful of groceries you just want your garage door to open seamlessly so you can get into your house and get settled. Garage door openers have been around for quite some time, but they tend to wear over time and newer models have more safety, security and added features that might be ideal to someone who is looking for a new model.

When shopping for a new garage door opener they’re a few...MORE things you’ll want to consider to get the perfect fit for your household. The most basic of models will open and close your garage door with the touch of a button. As you start to spend more, you’ll get added features like a wireless keypad mounted on the garage door which allows access to anyone with the code, doors that will open and close when they sense your vehicle arriving and even models you can control with your smartphone. The options are endless — it just depends on how much you want to spend and what is necessary to you.

In terms of the garage door operating their four drive types you’ll want to consider:

A chain-drive garage door opener has a metal chain that raises or lowers the door. These systems tend to be inexpensive, but loud. They can typically work if the power goes out and are able to handle heavy doors, but they require maintenance.

A belt-drive garage door opener uses a belt rather than a chain. This type of mechanism is smoother and quieter and requires less maintenance than some of the more advanced models.

A screw-drive garage door opener has a threaded steel rod that rotates to move the lifting mechanism. Like the belt-drive systems, these openers are quiet and don’t require much maintenance.

And, finally, a direct-drive garage door opener operates as a single unit — the whole unit moves to lift the garage door. These tend to be the quietest, smoothest mechanisms available.

You’ll also want to consider the horsepower of your opener, typically ½ horsepower will work for most residential doors on newer homes. If you have a solid wood door you might want to opt for ¾ horsepower so it can lift the heavy door with ease. You can also get 1 and 1 ½ horsepower models but those are for more commercial or special situations.

Security and safety are also big concerns when purchasing a new model. Since 1993, all garage door openers are required to have a special reversing mechanism to ensure safety from closing if a child, pet, car or object is in the way. When it comes to security you’ll get more when you pay more. If security is the main concern you might want to opt for an option with a rolling code that changes the access code after each use to prevent people from hacking into the system to break in.

Before you decide which garage door opener is for you, here’s a quick recap:

  • Noise: A chain-drive system is a great budget pick, but it tends to be loud. If noise is your main concern, opt for a belt-drive, a screw-drive or a direct-drive garage door opener.
  • Access: Think about how you want the door to open, do you want to press a button to open to door or would you rather the door just automatically open when your car pulls in the driveway.
  • Security: If security is your priority in a new machine look for an option with a rolling code. If it’s in the budget, you may even opt for a model with a fingerprint keypad.

 

  • Chamberlain WD832KEV Garage Door Opener, ½ HP, Ultra-Quiet Belt Drive Operation, MyQ Smartphone Control Enabled (Internet Gateway Sold Separately), Includes 2-3 Button Remotes, Keyless Entry Keypad, Multi-Function Wall Control Panel

    Best Overall: Chamberlain WD832KEV Whisper Belt Drive Garage Door Opener

    Looking for something powerful but don’t want it to be too loud? This garage door opener from Chamberlain is a great option. Featuring an exclusive Motor Vibration Isolation System which eliminates vibration for reduced noise, this is a good choice especially you have an attached garage with rooms above the space. It also has MyQ enabled technology that allows you to monitor and control the opener via your smartphone with an extra purchase of the product. You can set the opener’s timer to close...MORE the door one, five or 10 minutes if you forget, and it has sensors to make sure it won’t close if something is in its path. It comes with a lifetime motor, lifetime belt, five-year parts, and one-year accessories warranty.

    Customers who have purchased this garage door opener for their homes have been mostly satisfied with the performance of it. Many have raved about how quiet it actually is—one said instead of hearing the metal squeak and clank like with their last one, only the sound of the “wooden door being jostled around as it is pulled up and down” is all you hear with this one. Customers were also happy with the features including the automatic closer when you forget to shut it after you go inside. Some had had issues with the manual being hard to understand while installing it themselves. But most were happy with the overall performance.

  • Chamberlain PD612EV Garage Door Opener, 1/2 HP, Durable Chain Drive Operation, MyQ Smartphone Control Enabled (Internet Gateway Sold Separately), Includes 2-3 Button Remotes, Keyless Entry Keypad, Multi-Function Wall Control Panel

    Best Budget: Chamberlain PD612EV 1/2 HP MyQ Enabled Garage Door Opener

    While there might not be a huge price range when it comes to garage door openers—they are all quite an investment—there a few less expensive options to consider. Here’s a great budget option from Chamberlain. It has a motor that’s equivalent to ½ horsepower and chain drive system that is quick and easy to install. You can also connect it to the MQ technology (gateway sold separately) to use with your smartphone. The product comes with two three-button visor remote controls, a multi-function wall...MORE control, as well as a wireless keyless entry system. It comes with a 10-year motor, two-year parts, and one-year accessories warranty.

    Most of the reviewers who have purchased this product would recommend it to others. Many have said it’s a quality product that is quiet and easy to install. In terms of critical reviews, some have had issues with parts breaking or the item not coming with all the nuts and bolts required to install it. But most were happy with their purchase.

  • Chamberlain PD512 Garage Door Opener, ½ HP, Durable Chain Drive Operation, Includes 2-1 Button Remotes, Wall Control Panel

    Best Security: Chamberlain PD512 Garage Door Opener

    Looking for another budget option? This one, also from Chamberlain, is a good choice. With a powerful ½ horsepower motor, it’s reliable and rugged, especially paired with its industrial strength chain drive. The 100-watt bulb gives you some overhead light that guides you into your home from your car safely. It also comes with a pre-programmed, one-button remote that can be used over a long range. Plus, there are safety sensors that project an invisible beam helping to prevent the door closing on...MORE people or objects. And when the door is closed, you can rest assured it’ll stay closed and locked thanks to its Patented Security + 2.0 rolling code technology and PosiLock anti-theft protection.

    Customers who are looking for a low-cost, no-frills garage door opener will find this product satisfying. Reviewers have commented on how easy it is to set up and the fact that it does its job of opening and closing well. 

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    Best Belt Drive Garage Door Opener: Genie SilentMax 750

    Belt driven garage door openers offer a prime level of noise reduction if you want a silent environment in the garage. While common chainlinks will rattle during use, the smooth performance of a belt dampens noise as the garage door slides up and down. Using a 3/4 motor, the Genie SilentMax 750 will easily tackle any typical garage door while keeping the environment quiet and comfortable while in use.

    Capable of lifting a seven-foot garage door up to 500 pounds in weight, the SilentMax 750 comes...MORE with a number of convenience features for automatic and remote use. The included wireless keypad and dual remote controls will ​insure that you are the only one that has access to the door. Compatible with a number of in-car remote systems like HomeLink, you can also keep the remotes at home if you are worried about losing the “keys.”​

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  • Best Smart Home: NEXX Garage NXG-100 Nxg Remote Compatible Door Openers

    If using a separate garage door opening remote doesn't appeal to you, consider using your wifi connection to open and close your garage door. This smart remote door opener from NEXX links your wifi to its device for a seamless result. Simply use the coordinating app on your phone to open and close your garage from your car or home.

    The NEXX garage door opener allows multiple people to use it. You can also hook it up to Amazon Alexa or your Google Home device to use voice commands to open and...MORE close the garage. Users say it takes about 20 minutes to install the device into your existing garage door opening mechanism, but once it is set up, it works seamlessly.

  • Chamberlain WD962KEV Garage Door Opener, ¾ HPS, Battery Backup When Power Goes Out, Ultra-Quiet Belt Drive Operation, MyQ Smartphone Control Enabled (Internet Gateway Sold Separately), Includes 2-3 Button Remotes, Keyless Entry Keypad, Multi-Function Wall Control Panel

    Best High-End: Chamberlain WD962KEV Garage Door Opener

    Here’s an opener that comes with all the bells and whistles. Featuring an ultra quiet belt drive, you’ll be thankful you purchased one like this especially if you have a room positioned near or above the garage. It’s also got battery backup so if the power goes out, you can still get in and out with ease for up to 20 open and close cycles for the first 24 hours of an outage. And for the technology savvy will appreciate its MyQ smartphone control technology that allows you to control the door via...MORE an app on your iPhone or Android, plus you’ll receive safety notifications if you’re away from the house and the door opens or closes. And for extra peace of mind, there’s also a feature that will automatically close the door after a set amount of time — you know, just in case you forget.

    The majority of those who have purchased this product have been happy with it, saying it’s extremely quiet and comes with a great lifetime warranty. Some of the more critical reviews had to do with the remote not working well and other minor malfunctions. But most were satisfied with the product and would recommend it to others. 

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    Best Speed: Genie Excelerator 1 HPc Direct Screw Drive DC Garage Door Opener

    If you're often anxious for your garage door to open faster — then the Genie Exceleartor would be the perfect pick for you. Outfitted with a direct screw drive that ensure a safe, stable and fast opening and closing you'll also be impressed the maintenance-free operation this comes with as well as the lifetime guarantee of the operator.

    This opener is easy to install for most DIYers and comes with two remotes and a wireless keypad so you can open the door with a pin. If you are interested...MORE in having this smart-enabled you can purchase a separate kit to do so. The Safe-T Beam helps prevent accidents using a infrared beam that will open or close the door if a car is getting to close. 

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    Best Easy Installation: Genie 37280u Garage Door Opener with 3/4 HPc DC Chain

    Spending your whole weekend setting up a new garage door opener is not on the top of most peoples list. This opener is easy to install for most levels of DIYers and it provides a quiet and reliable open and close. This has 3/4 HPc DC chain features and the powerhead can open 12" in a second. It has a wireless remote and Intellicode 2 security to prevent people from breaking into your home. 

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