A Simplified Guide to Garage Door Opener Safety Standards12/21/2013 Back To Blog
Garage door openers have been becoming more and more commonplace over the last sixty years. However they do control the movement of a number of garage door parts including the heavy door itself. This potentially dangerous movement requires the industry to constantly review safety standards, making it a little confusing for consumers.
The Official Standards
The current level of official standards only applies to a garage door opener which was manufactured after 1993. These newer models have additional in-built safety features to prevent the door from closing on any form of obstruction. This is designed to protect against damage to your vehicle and prevent injury to family members or pets. The safety feature usually has a number of safety eyes to return the door to the fully open position in the event that it makes contact with an object, doesn’t close fully in up to thirty seconds or the path of the sensor is broken by an object, animal or person.
If your opener was made before 1993 it probably does not conform to the current safety standards. While the government and manufacturers would want all these older models to be replaced, they cannot force homeowners into garage door opener replacement. However you may find that you have greater difficulty sourcing replacement garage door parts as time progresses, so eventually you will need to replace a broken or damaged opener with a new system which conforms to the safety standards.
As average consumers, you really don’t need to become too bogged down by the safety standards of openers. You should be concerned about whether your current system operates safely. This can easily be tested by placing a small block of wood in the path of the open garage door. When you try to close the door, it should detect this obstruction and automatically return to the fully open position. If this does not happen, then you should treat your system with special care as you may not have the additional safety features needed.