How to Install a Screw Drive Garage Door Opener

A screw drive garage door opener uses a threaded steel rod along which the lifting mechanism travels. Generally it is considered to be reliable and durable and requires least amount of maintenance. If you decide to install the garage door opener yourself, make sure you go through the user manual before beginning, as each door opener has its own specifications; below is a general guide to a screw-drive garage door opener installation.

Material and Tools Required

  • Screw-Drive Garage Door Opener
  • Angle Iron
  • Electrical Wiring
  • Reinforcement Brackets
  • Screws
  • Stud Finder
  • Bolts
  • Flat Blade Screwdriver
  • Philips Screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Hack Saw
  • Level
  • Pliers
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Step ladder (6’ to 7’)
  • Wire Stripper
  • Safety glasses
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Electrical Drill
  • Metal Cutting Snips

Step 1 – Create a Pre-installation Check List

Before beginning measure the height, thickness and type of door and the overall size of your garage. These specifications are prerequisites to buying the appropriate garage door opening unit for your need. Before you begin installing, undo locks and clear out the garage.

Step 2 – Assemble the Screw-Drive Garage Door Opening Unit

Your screw-drive garage door opener is a three piece unit (for the majority of the brands available). For assembly, it is best to read the instruction manual and follow the directions. The manual will also provide you with the basic instructions on how to install the unit as per your door type. Assemble the pieces and lay them out on the garage floor.

Step 3 – Marking the Center and Taking Measurements

The motor head should be horizontally centered in proportion to the garage door, so measure the door  and divide the length, and you will have the center. The distance at which it should be placed depends on the height of the door. For a 7’+ door, the average distance will be about 10 feet.

Step 4 – Installing the Reinforcement Brackets and Attaching the Power Head

Use a stud finder to find the stud along the marked measurements and attach perforated angle irons to form an ‘L’. For a sectional door, the motor should be placed slightly below the level of the door. At the lower end of the ‘L’, attach the motor. The remaining unit will extend from it.

Step 5 – Securing the Door Arms

For a sectional door, attach the shorter legged arm to the door bracket, and the straight arm to the carriage. Connect the two using a clevis pin and a cotter pin. The two brackets will be connected using bolts. Make sure you space the bolts. The length of the arm should be as short as possible but should not be vertical when the door is fully closed. The carriage can be moved and the bolts re-adjusted to get the proper length. Adjust the emergency release knob according to your requirement.

Step 6 – Connecting to an Electricity Outlet

You need to have an electric outlet within 3 feet range of the motor. You should not use an extension-wire as it is a potential violation of the safety code.

Step 7 – Installing Infrared Security Devices

The device is attached to both ends of the bottom of the door using brackets. While attaching make sure the red LED is placed on the side that gets the most sunlight. The device is a security device to prevent accidents.

Step 8 – Finishing Up

Install the wall controllers as per instructions. Plug the motor into a socket and test the door.