I recently bought a new home with garage door openers. They function
properly, and they have an "automatic reverse" if they bump something.
I'd like to retrofit them with an "Electric Eye" so they if something
or someone passes inderneath them. I'd also like to adjust the reverse
function so that they will reverse on a softer bump than they currently
Is this possible?
To get the electric eye you will need to buy a new opener. About $150
each with two transmitters. Not really difficult to install yourself.
Your present one should have an adjustment for the reverse. I think
mine said to put a 2x4 on the floor by the door. Then adjust so it
would open when hitting it.
Not as much pain as the guys at the emergency room can tell you about.
They were added because of real life accidents from people who never thought
it would happen.
Now maybe that is not enough for you, maybe you should consider that if
a neighbor kid gets bumped in the head by your door some lawyer is going to
make a fortune off you. You may find that your insurance does not help
because you intentionally defeated the safety device.
Small children, with a familyu friend who lost a 5 year old to a garage
door with an automatic opener. The nuiscnce is worth the safety. I
have them in my current garage, and I am able to work around the
nuisance factor. However, in the new house, I don't want any more to
worry about than I already have.
Steve Barker LT wrote:
It would appear you know little about five year old children. You may
know a great deal about garage door openers however. Don't let you lack of
knowledge of children get in the way of accepting the laws requiring safety
Then again, many of us know a lot about kids but no longer have any nor
are anywhere close to where there are any...as someone else noted, it's
miles to another farmhouse and I'll be d---'d if I'm going to have to
restart the door closer after starting to close it and leaving by that
direction rather than going "long way 'round"... :(
It's the "one size fits all" mentality that bugs me in such
discussions. While the kids were young and we lived in a residential
neighborhood I did put up w/ the occasional inconvenience to not bypass
them, but see absolutely no reason to do so here at the present time.
Maybe, and probably...
If the opener didn't come w/ safety optical sensors, you would have to
figure out how to rig a set of sensors up to make them work. How
difficult that would be would depend on whether there is logic that
wasn't used or whether it is a unit that has no provision. Would need
at a minimum the sensors and logic to cause the reversing contacts to
close on signal.
For the adjustment, that depends on the unit. Virtually all had both a
reversing-position adjustment and a tension adjustment. You may be
able to find an instruction manual online or look at the unit and see
if you can discern the adjustments available. It has to have one for
position, both up and down, so if there are others beyond that, good
chance one of them is tension. Some units had tension spring clutches
that were adjusted by a nut on a threaded shaft on the drive shaft or
Wow! That tension spring type brings back memories. My first door
opener, a early model Heath Kit was that type. The door weighed about
If anything got hit by that door it was crushed, springs or not.
The reversing mechanism was the location of two nuts on a threaded shaft
that rotated. The nuts were kept from turning so they rode up and down
on the shaft. The door would stop and set for reverse when one of the
nuts tripped a toggle switch. The door moved at one speed, very fast.
Have to agree with those who say getting new openers. Funny thing - I
did a safety retrofit on my extension springs last summer, pulling
safety cables through, based on thread here, and couple weeks ago, one
snapped. No harm done. Course I know I should replace them, but it was
late, and I wanted to use my car in the morning, so just re-attached/
adjusted tension on the thing, since it snapped at the end as usual.
There was one of the 4 I didn't get to last summer, or since- the one
over the "junk pile."
You will need the instructions for that specific opener. They may be
available at the web site for the door's manufacturer. If not post back
here with the make and model information and maybe someone will have the
Installing a reverse sensor is simple enough for the average
do-it-yourselfer. You will find a simple to install unit at:
The auto-reverse is or should be adjustable; Google for the manufacturer's
site and you might find a manual. If it is not or if you can't find the
manual, get new openers.
As for the infrared sensors, why would you bother if yours don't have them?
They get blinded by the sun, or covered with snow, leaves or spiders. If
that doesn't happen, then the kids will kick something into them that puts
them out of alignment. That last one is easily fixed, but again, why bother
with them if you don't have to? If the auto-reverse is adjusted properly,
there is no need for these things.
I'd also like to adjust the reverse function so that they will reverse on
a softer bump than they currently > do.
Look on the back panel of the housing. There might be a couple of adjusting
screws appropriately label as to their function. But, the suggestion to
research for an operator's manual online would be my first step. Good luck.
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