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How to Open Your Garage Door If There's a Power Outage

Those summer thunderstorms can do more than rile up your pets and soak your yard.

If they’re accompanied by strong winds or an ill-timed lightning strike to a transformer, a storm can quickly deprive your home of power for an extended amount of time. Beyond shutting down your fridge and water pump, it might also render your garage door opener unusable.

While modern technology might have us think that garage doors are unopenable without a motorized lift, you can work around that by using a built-in alternative system. If you find yourself in this kind of situation, here are some ways to open the garage door without power.

Trip the Trigger

As it turns out, companies like LiftMaster do anticipate scenarios — broken motors and remote opener failure are some other possibilities — where you need to disconnect the opener from the door to allow for manual opening.

You can begin this process by finding the system’s bypass switch. If you’ve ever noticed a rope tied to a typically red handle, that’s what you’re looking for. Once you pull that, it’ll activate the manual release handle, which releases the trolley from the rail. This action will immediately place the garage door in manual mode, so you need to consider a few things before pulling it, such as:

  • Check to see that the garage door is already fully closed when pulling the cord. Emergencies can cause panic, but it’s important to remember that tugging the rope will cause the ajar door to close shut immediately. You don’t want to endanger yourself or your family.
  • If you need to disengage the door while it remains up, you should place something underneath to catch it from falling. From there, you can then grasp the door and move it as necessary.
  • The rope requires force to activate the lever, which helps to prevent accidents. Do not pull on it too hard or hang from it, as it can cause damage to the system that might cost you later.

Staying in Manual Mode

Extended periods without power will call for you to remain in manual mode, and that means you need to keep tabs on the location of the rope. When opening or closing the door, pull the cord down and back toward the inside of the garage to prevent it from getting caught in the tracks.

Reattaching the Door When Power Returns

Eventually, you will regain electricity to your home and all of the luxuries that it affords, including your garage door opener.

However, a door placed in manual mode will not automatically correct itself, so that responsibility will fall on your shoulders. You needn’t worry, as it’s a fairly straightforward process that will take no more than a few minutes.

You will need to re-engage the trolley attachment, which requires that you pull down on the cord and angle it toward the garage door opening, which will keep it from activating the lever. From there, you can then pull up on the door until it snaps into place, which should then place you back into automatic mode.

Conversely, you should be able to use the remote opener, as the track will force the spring attachment back into place.

Install a Backup Battery Pack

If you’ve decided that you don’t want to go through that hassle again, many door openers do have built-in battery reserves now, which allows them to maintain their functionality in the event of a power outage in your garage.

Liberty Door and Awning Will Assist With Any Garage Door Problems

If you run into any problems with re-engaging your automatic opener or wish to improve it with a battery pack, our experts will happily lend their skills to your needs. Contact us today if you need services or questions answered.

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