What size of Garage Door Opener?

Discussion in 'Garages, Workshops & Tools' started by Teamchevy, Aug 29, 2010.

  1. Teamchevy

    Teamchevy Veteran Member Gold Member

    Aug 31, 2008
    Peterborough, Ontario
    Looking for some feedback as to why you would buy a 3/4 hp opener over a 1/2 hp one?? Which do you have and why??

  2. MadMike

    MadMike Administrator Staff Member

    Feb 11, 1999
    Dawsonville Georgia
    The weight of the door and the time it takes to lift the door.
    I had 1/2hp openers on my formerly solid wood doors (9x7). It was able to lift these doors in a timely fashion.

    If you had a single, large door - you'd want the more powerful opener.
  3. Cardinal

    Cardinal Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Jun 22, 2003
    Endicott, NY
    As a service tech on GDOs, I had to explain to customers that a GDO doesn't actually lift a door. The springs balance the weight of the door so in effect, the GDO sees VERY little of the actual weight of the door.

    A properly adjusted garage door should be able to be lifted by a small child. IF not, then the spring(s) need to be adjusted.

    There are many types and HP of GDOs. Chain driven, belt driven, gear driven. All have their advantages.

    Chain driven is the most common and probably the least expensive BUT they are noisy. NEVER put a chain driven GDO under an occoupied space.

    Belt driven is the quietest but USUALLY the most expensive.

    Gear driven are usually found in commercial applicaitions and are EXPENSIVE.

    As for HP, it's a matter of choice. I have both 1/2 HP and 1/3 HP units and both work great as long as I: 1) keep the lift springs adjusted, 2) lubricate the door (rollers, hinges and tracks), and 3) keep the GDO in adjustment (I usually have to adjust the torque settings up and down between winter cold and summer hot weather).

    Off hand, I can't remember seeing a 3/4 HP GDO in a "happy homeowner's garage". I think that it would be a commercial unit rather than a residential one.
  4. Teamchevy

    Teamchevy Veteran Member Gold Member

    Aug 31, 2008
    Peterborough, Ontario
    I'm looking at putting in a 16' x 8' high insulated door. So a 1/2 HP should be enough??

  5. Gary S

    Gary S Administrator Lifetime Gold Member

    Apr 14, 1999
    Bismarck, North Dakota
    I had a 1/2 hp opener on a previous garage I owned. That garage had a 16x7 insulated door and that opener handled it very nicely.
  6. Teamchevy

    Teamchevy Veteran Member Gold Member

    Aug 31, 2008
    Peterborough, Ontario
    Thanks Gary!

  7. Enroute

    Enroute Veteran Member

    Nov 1, 2001
    S. Ontario
    Agreed ^^^^

    I look at it this way...if the 3/4 hp is a few bucks more than a 1/2 hp unit then go for the 3/4 hp.....you're getting 50% more power for minimal $ and there is a lesser chance of burning out the unit should the smooth operation of the door begin to diminish.

    FWIW, I have a single door (on my double car garage) which is opened with a 3/4 hp unit. Sears had a great sale on the 3/4 hp units with the deluxe remote, deluxe wired button, etc. Mine is chain drive as I do not have occupied space above the garage. As mentioned above...if you have rooms above the garage you need to pay attention to the sound and vibration emissions of the opener.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2010

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