How To Realign Garage Door Sensors?

March 30, 2024

Almost every day, people use garage doors to get in and out of their garages and keep their stuff safe. If something goes wrong with the garage door, it can mess up our daily routine. One problem that can make the garage door not work right is when the sensors get broken or don’t stay where they are supposed to.

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What Are Garage Door Sensors?

Garage door sensors are like guardians, ensuring the door doesn’t close on cars, kids, or pets. Most garage doors need two sensors, one on each side. If something prevents the door from closing, the sensors tell the opener to stop and go back up.

These sensors are super important. One sends signals to the other, telling it to close the door. But if they are not lined up right, the signal won’t work, and the door won’t close. If your garage door isn’t working right and you are tired of getting out of your car to open it manually, don’t worry. Fixing the sensors is way easier than you think.

Garage Door Sensors Mechanism

You must first know how your garage door works to determine if a sensor is not lined up right. Since the early 1990s, garage doors have had sensors to keep you safe and prevent the door from closing on something or someone.

When you tell the door to close, the sensors on each side send a beam of light to each other. If something blocks that beam, the sensor tells the door to stop and go back up. The door won’t close until the path is clear. So, sensors are important for safety; now, they are a standard part of garage doors.

How to Detect If Garage Door Sensors Are Misaligned?

Now that you understand how your garage door works, you can check if the sensors are working properly. If they are causing trouble, you can call professionals for a fix. Take the following measures to spot the misalignment:

  • Light Indicators: Look at the small lights outside your garage door. If they are green, everything’s good. If they are red, something’s wrong.
  • Dirty Lenses: Sometimes, dirt can cover the sensor lenses and make them not work right. Try cleaning them up.
  • Damaged Wires: Check the wires connecting your sensors. If you see any cracks or breaks, they need fixing or replacing.

Steps to Realign Your Garage Door Sensors

The alignment of garage door sensors is hardly a big feat. With the right tools in hand, you can try taking the following steps:

  1. Power Off
    First, find the breaker box in your house and switch off the power to your garage. This keeps things safe while you work. If a cord powers your sensors, just unplug it. Remember to wear protective gloves to keep safe while handling wires.
  2. Loosen Screws
    Each sensor is held in place by screws. Use a screwdriver to loosen these screws, but don’t remove them completely.
  3. Adjust Mounting Brackets
    Now that the screws are loose, you can move the mounting brackets up or down. Use your hands, not tools, to avoid damaging the sensors.
  4. Tie String
    Wrap a piece of string around one sensor and tie it tightly. Then, stretch the string across to the other sensor and tie it there. This helps make sure the sensors are lined up.
  5. Check Alignment
    Use a level to ensure the string is straight. If it’s not, adjust the sensors until it is.
  6. Tighten Screws
    Once the sensors are aligned, tighten the screws to hold them in place. Check the alignment again with the level.
  7. Power On
    Now that everything is set, turn the power back on. Test the sensors to make sure they are working correctly.
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Final Word

Is your garage door still giving you trouble? Our guide on “how to realign garage door sensors” is easy enough, but sometimes problems lie deeper than you think.

Contact our garage door experts at Garage Door Service Master. We are proud to be an accredited International Door Association (IDEA) member and work under their code of ethics. Dial (832) 391-8827 to reach out.