Electric garage doors have come a long way since their initial introduction to the masses in 1954, although it wasn’t until the 1970s that remote-controlled garage doors openers were a staple in homes. Before this time, garage doors were opened manually, resulting in the risk of pinched fingers and falling doors. The garage door opener solved these problems but brought on new threats of automatic closures on children and pets. Today, your garage door installation includes a number of safety features to prevent accidents.
- Photo eyes: Since 1993, every garage door installation has required photo eyes in order to meet the safety requirements for garage door openers. Photo eyes are the miniature camera-like sensors that are installed around six inches from the ground on your garage door. If something comes through the path of the garage door, the photo eyes pick it up and send a signal to automatically reverse the door.
- Auto reverse: This safety feature has also been required by federal law since 1993. When an object passes through the path of the closing garage door, the auto-reverse feature forces the garage door to move back up. If your garage door installation came with the auto-reverse function but without the photo eyes feature, the auto-reverse system will engage if the garage door comes into contact with an object, preventing someone or something from being pinned under the door.
- Mechanical release: One of the very few downsides to a garage door opener occurs during a power outage. Electricity is necessary for your garage door opener to function properly, but the mechanical release can engage the mechanisms. Often referred to as the emergency release, the mechanical release is the red cord and handle that hangs from overhead on the trolley system. Pulling the cord will disconnect the door from the trolley, allowing you to open and close your garage door manually.
If your garage door is lacking any of these features or needs repairs, call us at HLM Garage Doors & More, LLC today!