If your Boise, ID home has a garage, you likely use it for multiple purposes. Among other things, you likely use it as a workshop and a place to safely park your vehicles. One of the things that makes a garage so flexible, though, is its wide door. It makes it possible to bring large items like furniture in and out of your home. It also enhances your home’s curb appeal and keeps it safe from intruders. But there’s a way to make any garage door even more useful and functional.

By installing a garage door opener, you enhance your convenience and your home’s security. However, you can’t simply add a garage door opener without making some electrical preparations first. Here are the electrical requirements for a new garage door opener.

Powering Your Garage Door Opener

The electrical requirements for a residential garage door opener are very straightforward. That’s because residential garage door openers in the U.S. require a 120-volt power supply, just like a standard outlet. However, the motor in a garage door opener can draw significant wattage while operating. For that reason, garage door openers typically require their own electrical circuit.

If yours is a standard garage door, the opener it requires should only need a 15-amp circuit to operate. However, if you have an overly large or heavy door, you may need a heavy-duty garage door opener. In some cases, those larger units require a 20-amp circuit to support them. In either case, though, the circuit will require GFCI protection.

Since your garage door opener will have its own circuit, you should add GFCI protection to the circuit breaker. This is a simple matter of using the right circuit breaker module for your new circuit. There are GFCI-protected circuit breakers available to fit almost every kind of modern electrical panel. However, if your garage door is a plug-in model, you can instead opt for a GFCI-protected outlet. That offers a slightly cheaper option but accomplishes the same thing.

Additional Low-Voltage Wiring

Electrical wiring isn’t all you need to worry about when you install a new garage door opener. That’s because all openers come with some attachments that need wiring, too. For example, all garage door openers come with safety sensors that require low-voltage wiring. The sensors sit near the bottom of your garage door and detect if anything is obstructing the door. This allows them to cut power to the opener so it will stop closing.

The wiring for most garage door sensors is 22-gauge wire, similar to what you’d find powering a doorbell. The wires typically run up the side of the wall on either side of the garage door. Then, they converge at the opener motor as they travel across your garage’s ceiling. At the opener end, the wires will attach to screw-down terminals in the opener motor housing. On the sensor end, the wires will attach to terminals or quick-connects supplied with the sensors.

Additionally, you will also need to run the same type of wire to connect your garage door opener’s control panel. The panel itself is typically installed near the interior door leading to your home inside your garage. This allows you to operate the garage door from inside the garage. The wiring must run from that location up to the garage door motor to make appropriate connections.

Some garage door openers also come with a keypad or control panel so you can open them from the outside. They also require 22-gauge wire but may be more complex to install. This is because the wire must run through the exterior wall next to your garage door or through the doorjamb.

Professional Installation Is Your Best Option

Given how much electrical work installing a garage door opener requires, your best option is a professional installation. Here in Boise, there’s nobody better to handle the job for you than Legacy Garage Doors. We’ve been the area’s go-to garage door service for over 20 years.

We offer garage door installation, replacement, and repair. We also handle garage door openers and commercial garage doors. Plus, we offer 24/7 emergency services, so you never get stuck waiting for help with your garage door. We’re also Better Business Bureau-accredited with an A+ rating and have a flawless track record. So, if you need a garage door opener installed in Boise, call Legacy Garage Doors today!

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