Homeowners often ask us how long garage door openers last. This is a loaded question that depends on several different factors including frequency of use, brand, and quality of installation. So, the lifespan varies, but I want to give some context before I give you a rough number of years you can get out of a new opener.
Manufacturers measure most everything on a garage door, including the motor, by life cycle. A cycle is a full open and close of the garage door. This means the more you open and close your garage door, the shorter the life of your garage door opener will be. However, in recent years, homeowners have been entering through their garage door more often than using their front door, shortening that life cycle.
In addition to frequency of use, the brand of your opener will also affect the lifespan. During my time owning Aaron Overhead Doors, I’ve found that there are a few current garage door opener manufacturers that tend to last longer than others. For example, the LiftMaster opener has an excellent reputation due to its low maintenance and long lasting qualities. Even with frequent use, this could translate into five to ten years of additional use.
The last variable to consider when determining the lifespan of your garage door opener is the installation quality. Even a great motor can live a short life if it isn’t installed properly or if the springs aren’t performing the way they should. This is because the springs are the counterbalance system for the garage door, doing the heavy lifting, while the motor guides the door through the tracks. If the springs are unbalanced or worn down, they can’t hold the garage door’s weight and put a greater strain on the opener. This issue can decrease the longevity of your opener by five years or more.
So, the question was this: How long do garage door openers last? We see LiftMasters last between 15 – 20 years. However, that’s in excellent conditions. Anything less than excellent conditions can reduce the lifespan to 8 – 12 years. However, beyond just brand, you also have to consider which type of opener will give you the best life expectancy. We recommend belt drive openers to get a true 15-20 years out of a new garage door opener.
There are five types of garage door openers. These include chain drive, belt drive, direct drive, screw drive, and side mount. Each of these types has a different lifespan. Belt drive openers are known for their durability because the lack of moving parts means the opener experiences wear slowly. Side mount and direct drive also have long lifespans for the same reason. On the other end, chain drive and screw drive openers have more metal components and moving parts, meaning that they wear out more quickly. Although belt, direct, and side mount openers tend to be the more expensive options, the longevity and reliability more than make up for upfront costs.
The average cost of a garage door opener installed by a professional is around $500. This cost will vary depending on the type and brand of opener you choose, though.
If you want to learn more about the lifespan of your garage door opener or are considering replacement, contact us! Here at Aaron Overhead Doors, we are opener repair and replacement experts. One of our expert technicians will be happy to help you select the best garage door opener for your home.