The two laser units on the tracks for my garage door were damaged when
our garage flooded and then froze during the winter.
These are a safety feature but with no small children around, I don't
consider it necessary.
Is there any way of by-passing them? I tried twisting the wires to-
gether on each side. It didn't work. Then I joined the respective
wires from one side to the other across the opening. That didn't work
either. The laser beam is essentially a switch, isn't it?
If I can't bypass it, do I have to order the manufacturer's
replacement equipment (which will take time) or is there something
"generic' I can use?
I found out last week that Martin Garage Door company has developed an
opener without the need for the sensors.
"Exclusive Soft-Touch Reverse Technology
The door & opener system reverses with just a soft touch-
eliminating the need for troublesome photo eyes
The door & opener system will stop with just a soft touch-
eliminating the appeal for children to ride the door while it opens "
the sensors will be replaced for free if you contact the mfgr. until
then you'll just have to hold the button to lower the door. raising
will be normal. When you get them back you can mount them 6" apart on
the ceiling right above the unit, and they'll never be damaged again.
I doubt they're lasers but instead one is an LED transmitter and the
other is a phototransistor receiver, and you should be able to repair
them by opening them up, washing them thoroughly with alcohol, and
letting them dry for several hours in a warm place before putting them
back into service. Sometimes the only problem caused by flooding is
silt build-up on the optical parts. All but the oldest garage door
openers are designed to not allow the door to be closed if the signal
from the optical receiver can't be detected, so of course merely
cutting the wires or connecting them together won't work, and the
latter could damage the overhead unit. Damage to the electronics in
the optical sensor and transmitter should be inexpensive to repair
since only generic parts are used in them, and I would expect any
parts related to them in the overhead unit to be the same, but it's
much more hazardous to work on it since some of the circuitry runs at
high voltage, and a careless person could easily get shocked (to
death), lose a finger, or even be scalped if the opener starts to move
Almost all openers are made by Chamberlain (Liftmaster, Sears
Craftsman) or Genie, and parts are readily available from them, opener
service companies, and retailers.
I like Steve's comment that they can be replaced for free.
I strongly urge you to get them working and fully functional
as they were designed. Remember that while you may not have any young
children, other people do, including relatives and neighbors. In
addition animals and adults with limited mobility can be injured by
these doors as might someone who you might sell you home to some time
Not only could there be a preventable accident, but you could
be held responsible. I don't know about your insurance, but if I were
an attorney for someone who was injured I would love to find out that
the owner had intentionally defeated the safety device that might have
saved that child's life.
Between March 82 and November 96, 62 children under 15 have been
reported killed by garage doors.
that number is a mere nothing. We spend all this time, technology,
money, political crap for 4.4 deaths a year. I wonder how many kids are
killed or maimed by pit bulls, or wolf dogs? We don't do a dam thing
about those. In either event it all boils down to proper parental
supervision. if those 62 had been properly supervised, they'd still be
When did garage door openers come into common use? When did
the safety devices come into use? Now do the math. How many did not
die that would have otherwise?
4.4 deaths a year might seem small to you, but if it was your
child, you would likely fee different about it. At least I would hope
you would. I suspect you might also feel different it it Was a
neighbors child and your garage.
The devices are not expensive. Some people intentionally
defeat them which means they are going out of their way to make their
garage door less safe. What could possibly be in their head?
What if I reveled in my neighbor's brattish child being maimed by a falling
garage door? Would that be sufficient reason to legislate AGAINST safety
It is poor governance to make laws based on how one might feel.
Unless you're a progressive, of course.
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