How to Test and Adjust Garage Door Safety Sensors

Adjusting Garage Door Opener Safety Reverse Sensor

Garage door safety sensors are sensitive to bangs and bashes and tend to lose alignment when something hits them hard. When determining whether they need to be replaced or just adjusted, you need to look at all the options. When you examine how these sensors work, you realize how intricate they are. A sensor is basically an electronic beam of light that sees things in its path and when blocked, reacts by stopping or reversing its action. These are all safety measures fitted into your garage door safety sensors.

Step 1 -Where to Find the Sensors

Your garage door safety sensors are found in one of two places. They are either on the door itself or on the rails of the door close to the floor area. You will most often find them mounted to the rail of the door.

Step 2 – Do the Garage Door Safety Sensors Work?

If you come home and the garage door fails to open normally, it is time to look at the sensors. As their position is vulnerable (one on each side of the garage door), they are frequently subjected to bumps and bruises.

Step 3 – Checking the Sensor Beams

For safety reasons, a person should never put themselves in the ray of the beam to test the sensors. Use something that doesn’t matter if it gets damaged, such as an old container. Modern-day garage door safety sensors are usually LED and if the sensors are aligned correctly with the two beams connecting, they should light up green. Take a clean cloth and very gently wipe them in case they have accumulated dust or residue of some sort. Do not handle them more than necessary or you might well put them out of alignment.

Step 4 – Checking the Wires

Sometimes the sensors get knocked or banged causing a wire to snap, come adrift, or merely cause a slight disconnection. If it’s a slight disconnection, this could cause your garage door safety sensors to work intermittently. If the wires are broken, you can use a soldering iron to fix them after unplugging the unit from your outlet.

Step 5 – If All Else Fails

Remember if the garage door works on the wall switch, then the fault definitely lies with the sensors. Check the sensor operator batteries. Generally, people tend to forget that the door operator kept in the out car runs off batteries. Replace them and see if that works.

Step 6 – It Still Doesn’t Work

You’ve tried all of the above steps and something still isn’t working. How old is the door? As the years pass by the springs that work the door weaken and the amount of pressure required by the motor might need to be increased. If you look at the sensor on the right light lens, you should find the force adjustment switch just under the light. If it is a single garage door sensor it will probably be set on one. Turn it a fraction - just a fraction. Test the door with something small in the area just before the door would close. If you have set it correctly it will come down until it reaches that object and then starts up again. You are now back in business and have got your garage door safety sensors working again.