An automatic garage door can be a tremendously useful labour-saving device, allowing you to enter, exit and secure your garage door without ever leaving the comfort of your vehicle. However, garage door openers naturally require a power source to function, and many openers become useless if and when your home's main power supply cuts out, forcing you to revert to opening and closing your garage door by hand.
However, not all garage doors become immobile when the power cuts out, and not all garage door openers become completely inoperative without their main power supply. If you're looking fora new automatic garage door and want to ensure that your door remains functional without electricity, keep the following guidelines in mind:
Choose a relatively light garage door
The easiest way to ensure your automatic garage door can still be used easily during a powercut is choosing a garage door made from relatively light materials. This generally precludes thick, ornate, timber garage doors, as these can be remarkably heavy and can be difficult to open and close manually, even if you choose a sliding door model that does not have to be lifted.
Aluminium is an excellent choice for a powercut-proof garage door, as even large aluminium doors fitted to multi-car garages are relatively light and can be opened and closed easily by most people without compromising on strength and security. Some steel doors can also be light enough to easily operate by hand, but they tend to be thinner than heavier steel doors and may not provide the level of security you desire.
Choose a garage door opener with a backup battery
They may cost a little more than standard garage door openers, but garage door openers that include a dedicated backup battery can be worth their weight in gold during a powercut. These batteries store enough reserve power to open and close a garage door many times before they drain, allowing you to keep the convenience of an automatic garage door even during prolonged powercuts. The lighter your door, the longer your backup battery will last, so openers with backup batteries complement light aluminium garage doors excellently.
Choose a solar-powered garage door opener
Solar-powered garage door openers are even more useful during a power outage than garage door openers with backup batteries. Most solar-powered openers combine a supply of electricity with solar panels that provide energy derived from the sun's rays and remain just as functional whether your power is on or off. Unlike battery-powered door openers, solar-powered garage door openers can be used for an indefinite period of time without electricity, as long as its panels are located in positions where they can accumulate enough sunlight.