Info on NuTone GDO

Old 10-01-03, 09:36 PM
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Info on NuTone GDO

Have just purchased a home which has a GDO that say's it's a Nutone Div., Scovill, Model G 577 S, vintage unknown. There is a Genie Model GR390 remote receiver attached to it, whether this was original or not is also unknown but I *think* this model might be a universal replacement receiver. The remotes are Genie as well.

Anyway, the whole thing seems to be working quite well, very quiet and all, except for one thing, the built in 60W light bulb does not work (doesn't come on when the door is opened, even with a known good bulb). I note with the cover off that what appears to be a set of contacts on apparently metallic strips, one of which is wrapped with many turns of fine wire, if pushed together with an insulated tool, will make the light come on as long as these contacts continue to be held together. Apparently this is a bi-metal heater type device that provides a timeout that turns the light back off after a period of time once it's turned on, which it never does unless I stand there and hold the aforementioned contacts together. This is *not* what I think this light should do, and even my wife seems to agree with me here for once. Of course she is the one who is complaining about "the little light thingie" not coming on so she can get to the door into the house when she comes home after dark.

Being constitutionally incapable of calling in professional help before I've had a chance to see if I can screw things up even further all by myself (in all modesty, I'll say that more often than not I *can* fix it myself...), I've been trying to find any information on this GDO. Nutone GDO's don't seem to actually exist. At least every reference I've found on the Web seems to indicate Nutone only makes door chimes and attic vent fans and maybe some "music from the rafters" stuff. Certainly nothing in the way of GDO's they seem willing to admit to. Scovill, for their part, don't seem to admit that Nutone ever existed...

I'm using GDO for "Garage Door Opener" because I've seen this usage in other threads here. But I'm beginning to realize, after staring into the guts of this GD O thing for some considerable time that there may be other appropriate meanings as well. All of the manufacturers in this realm seem intent on not revealing anything that might enable you to avoid calling in one of their dealer$...

A wiring schematic and owners/installation manual would obviously be quite helpful, but these, if *they* ever actually existed, seem to have been misplaced an owner or two ago.

Any help here greatly appreciated.

Kirk Dolan

Last edited by CapnKirk; 10-01-03 at 10:06 PM.
Old 10-02-03, 07:45 AM
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Your post makes entertaining reading. I wish I had a good answer for you. I also did not know that Nutone made GDOs. When it drives you sufficiently nuts, you might just consider a new opener. Until then, you might want to install a motion sensitive switch on your regular garage light. Or you might call Genie.
Old 10-02-03, 09:55 AM
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Hi John,

Thanks for the kind words. I did find a schematic, seems it was pasted inside the cover all along. Now why I would look there..., duh? I'd pulled the cover and just set it aside while I'd gone off to search the internet for info. But there it was, nonetheless.

Problem now is, as I take a first look at the schematic, the light should *never* have come on under any circumstance, door open, closed, stuck in the middle, whatever. But probably this is wrong, it'll just take a little more study.

Really don't want to buy a new GDO just for this light thing, of course, it really does seem to work just fine otherwise. Either I'll eventually figure it out and fix the problem, or there are a couple limit switches called out on the schematic that I'll be able to tap into to kludge my own circuit from or I'm pretty sure I have a couple limit switch assemblies out there in the garage somewhere (if I can get a light on so I can find them) that can be used for that purpose.

Kirk Dolan
Old 10-02-03, 10:20 AM
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Hi Kirk,
Two ideas:
Check the condition of the socket itself. See if it's burned, or if the center contact is making good contact with the bulb. Also, the bulbs in most of these units (at least mine is) are controlled by a time-delay relay. locate that, and check it. Bonus idea--look carefully inside the unit, particularly around the circuit board, for any loose or disconnected wires. Vibration can loosen things up with time.
Good Luck!

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