Very old garage door opener replace/fix/remotes

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Old 12-20-18, 07:21 AM
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Very old garage door opener replace/fix/remotes

Hi all I recently bought a house with a very very old garage door opener. It is a Montgomery Wards 1/3 HP 3/4 screw drive model looks like this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcVEc5ax8j0.

It works ok overall but I have issues with it I'd like to resolve or eventually replace it.
-It only has 1 remote. The house came with a Liftmaster 371LM remote that works. I just bought 2 more for cheap. Anyone know how to program it? There is a small button near the light I assume you press it then each remote.
-the remote needs to be pretty close to activate the door so I can't open it until I am almost at the door with my car. It may just be a old remote with weak battery as the remote is stamped 2008.
-light doesn't work. I tried replacing the bulb. This is a big issue for me as the garage is rather dimly lit and the light switch for the main lights is half-way down the wall from the entry door. I looked at the socket and the contacts as far as I can tell look ok. It doesn't have the type that sticks out and you can bend out further.
-Finally I am considering just replacing the unit. I undersand they still make 3/4" screw drive openers. Could I just replace the motor/light/remote unit without messing with the hardware? I realize I'd need to reset the range of motions and install the 2 sensors since this is a pre-1993 model with only pressure feedback. Would it be fairly simple to do? Anyone know a good video or instructions
 
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Old 12-20-18, 01:14 PM
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Well, at first I was going to say, if it works leave it alone. But as I read you post, I changed my mind. Replace it. But you will need to replace all the rails and hardware. In many cases its the rails and supporting parts that cause opener problems. And a new one will have more range and better security.
 
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Old 12-20-18, 01:39 PM
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I remember shopping at Monkey Ward back in the mid 70's and just Googled that that they went out of business in 2001.

Assuming you have the very last product they sold your opener it 17 years old, you have by all means and purposes exceeded the life of that product, get a new one!

I have 10 year old Chamberlain belt drive openers that are by far the quietest I have ever owned, occasional new is better!
 
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Old 12-20-18, 02:07 PM
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This opener must be before 1993 as it has no sensors, just the pressure feedback safety. Aside from the light It works sufficiently. I should also be able to program the new remotes. But yea I will consider replacing it in spring. The biggest issue that bothers me is the light. I leave for work in the morning and it is totally dark when I open the garage door. Do you think replacing it is a viable DIY project?
 
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Old 12-20-18, 02:31 PM
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If your door is good shape and well balanced then you should be able to install the opener without any trouble.
 
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Old 12-20-18, 02:45 PM
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Actually Montgomery Ward is still in business via a web site. I don't know if they offer replacement parts though but it wouldn't hurt to try @ Wards.com
 
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Old 12-20-18, 04:34 PM
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I thought those old war horses used DIP switch programming but apparently your came just after that. Your unit needs to have the purple (security+)programming button. The link below is the Liftmaster programming instructions. As far as the light..... it probably uses the old style thermal relay that is no longer available.

Usually on those older unit I add on a replacement receiver and new remotes.

371M programming (pdf)
 
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Old 12-20-18, 04:53 PM
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I got the light working. I swapped out the incandescent for a CFL bulb I took from someplace else. It comes on when the door is halfway open and stays on for 30sec then turns off. likewise with the door closing I see it come on 1/2 way closed. I assume that is its programming since there are no other controls for it.

It says the remote is for purple learn switch but I only found one small black button on the entire opener so I assume that is the button. I double checked the remote and that is the correct unit and it operates the door. It says right on the sticker on the bottom of the remote 371LM 1573 and HBW1573
 
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Old 12-20-18, 05:10 PM
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Actually it does have a Liftmaster remote actuator wired to it that is faces up on the outlet. It is a black box with a cover and inside there are two screws with the wires and a button that says smart actuator. So that is what operates with the remotes.

Looks like these are the instructions to program http://www.devancocanada.com/files/m...structions.pdf

thanks.
 
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Old 12-22-18, 07:06 AM
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FWIW That operator was made by Moore-O-Matic before 82.
Best screw drive ever. But they don't last forever.
 
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Old 12-22-18, 01:38 PM
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Forget the original remote clicker system. Modern clickers have better range and security.

Remote clicker and module just provide a switch contact closure to activate door system.

Wiring is easy. Just use wires going to current switch in garage.

There are zillons on market. Here are some $10 units: https://www.ebay.com/itm/DC-12v-10A-...By-:rk:19:pf:0
 

Last edited by doughess; 12-22-18 at 02:11 PM.
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Old 12-24-18, 06:00 AM
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Thanks all, as I said, the opener already has a separate Liftmaster remote module on the outlet. I received the two new remotes and already programmed them so I am good. I'd still like to have some way to control the opener light but it gives me 30 sec to either get to my car or the light switch so I can live with it.
 
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Old 12-27-18, 01:28 PM
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To open the garage door and do other things use a multi channel clicker system. Here is a 4 channel $12 unit :

https://www.ebay.com/itm/12V-4CH-Cha....c100005.m1851
 
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