Posts Tagged ‘Life Span of Your Garage Door Opener in Plano, TX’

Inventing the Garage Door Opener

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Opener

Really Old Garage Door OpenerIn 1926, C.G. Johnson invented the first electric overhead garage door opener in Hartford City, Indiana.  At that time, electric garage door openers did not become popular until ERA Meter Company of Chicago offered one after World War II (1939-1945).  The opener could be opened via a key being inserted into a post located at the end of the driveway, or with the flip of a switch from the inside of the garage.

Since 1977, Plano Overhead Garage Door has been installing quality garage door openers, as well as garage doors.  Today’s modern garage door openers provide many different options to choose from to meet the needs of our customers.   Some of the best features of modern garage door openers include built-in WiFi, battery backup, laser park assist, wireless remotes, safety reversing sensors, motion sensors, and so much more!


Hard to believe that, in under 50 years, we have gone from opening our garage doors using a key on a post, to being able to operate and monitor the history of your garage door opening from anywhere in the world.


Submitted by Nick J. McGregor, CEO of Plano Overhead Garage Door

Liftmaster 8550W- The Best Opener on the Market!

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX, Liftmaster 8550W

Liftmaster 8550W

My “Want List” for a Garage Door Opener…

With the features I want, it’s almost like buying a car! Here’s why –

I want a unit I can depend on (current unit chooses it’s own hours of operation!).

I want a unit that is quiet and smooth.

I want a unit where the manufacturer stands behind their product with a Lifetime Warranty on the motor and belt and at least 5 years on the parts.

I want bells and whistles!! (Safety features, Timer, Motion Detector, a back-up battery, etc)

Last, but not least, I want it to have Wi-Fi so I can control it from my phone wherever I am.

And that’s why I’m getting a LiftMaster 8550W Garage Door Opener.  It’s all this and more!!


Click Here to Learn More About the Revolutionary Liftmaster 8550W



By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

Big News about Home Automation!

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Opener Technology

Liftmaster has just changed the home automation landscape.   Liftmaster made headlines when they partnered with Nest a while back- allowing homeowners to enjoy Liftmaster products with Nest products all within the same application.  However, a critical piece of the equation was missing: Security Cameras!  That’s right, homeowners can now control Nest home security cameras from the Liftmaster MyQ app!


Liftmaster Nest Camera

Why Do You Need It?

Imagine being on vacation, tapping on the MyQ app, and being able to check to see how long the garage door has been closed or let someone in while you are gone, being able to adjust your thermostat on your way home so it’s ready when you get back, turning lights on or off to make it look like someone is home, and checking your home security cameras in real time.  Total control of your home with one login and one app.


My Q Screenshots Liftmaster

Does MY Garage Door Work with this app?  What are my Options?

  1. You can buy a new garage door opener with MyQ capabilities
  2. Activate and assign an account to your existing MyQ compatible garage door opener
  3. You can install an 821LM Universal MyQ kit on your existing garage door821LM Universal Smartphone Garage Door Controller

Where Can I Get What I Need?

Give us a call today to learn more about our garage door openers with built in WiFi and MyQ compatibility!  We supply all the parts needed to add your garage door opener to your home automation.  Accessories like the ones below can be bought from our showroom on Highway 75 in Plano!  It is worth noting that we do not sell Nest products, but they are readily available online and locally.

MyQ Accessories

(Left to Right: Garage Door Monitor, Remote Light Switch, Universal Wall Console, Internet Gateway, In-House Light Control, Universal Smart Controller, Universal Smart Controller Sensor)

Call today to get started 972-422-1695



By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

How to Disengage Garage Door Openers for Manual Operation

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX

Emergency Release Cord

There are circumstances where you have to dis-engage your garage door opener from your door. The most common is when your opener is either without power or it’s failing to perform its’ normal operations.*

VERY IMPORTANT: The door MUST be closed to do this. If you cannot close the door, DO NOT attempt. The garage door could drop hard and fast, and either hurt someone or damage the garage door or structure of your garage.


First, locate the “release cord” that is hanging off the opener rail close to your door. This is usually a red cord with a pull handle (somewhat like a lawn mower). Pull cord down and back (towards motor) with a small amount of force. You will feel it disengage, as well as, visually see the small spring on the lever open up. You can now open and close your door manually. If you cannot lift the door once the door is dis-engaged from the opener, stop immediately and call a professional- you likely have a broken spring.

To re-engage opener, push the wall console button to start the motor, and allow it to travel until you can see mechanism on the bottom of the rail (known as the “Inner Trolley”). Now locate the piece that slides along the bottom of the opener rail as the opener chain, belt, or screw is turning. This is the part that needs to be re-engaged to the carriage, trolley, or other mechanism that attaches the black elbow looking tow arm to the opener rail to raise the garage door. On some models, the door should reconnect automatically when motor stops its cycle. You will hear it “click” in place- this is usually for a belt-driven opener. For most other garage door openers, you will have to either pull down on the red emergency release cord, or down and towards the lights on the motor unit until you hear a click- or see a tab flip towards the motor lights on the opener unit on the ceiling. Then, you can either manually raise or lower the garage door until the outer trolley meets the inner trolley, or you can press the wall button and allow the opener to re-engage itself. Note that doing it manually is much safer, is less likely to cause damage, and is more likely to solve the issue. Please note that there are limit and force settings that may need to be re-adjusted before normal operation can continue.

If you cannot get the trolley and/or carriage to engage, or if your opener isn’t working properly, allow one of our professional technicians to come out and take care of your door or opener repairs or needs. As a fully staffed, family owned business since 1977, our company technicians use stocked trucks, we offer same-day service and provide FREE estimates. We have A+ ratings with Angie’s List AND Better Business Bureau (the only company in Plano with this recognition and rating).

*The directions mentioned are in laymen terms for most LiftMaster brand openers. For more specific instructions please refer to the opener manual. For other brands than LiftMaster (ie: Genie, Overhead, etc.), please contact the manufacturer of your opener for more specific instructions.


By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

888 LM Smart Wall Control Panel in Plano, TX

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Opener & Smartphones in Plano, TX, Garage Door Openers & Accessories in Plano, TX, Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX, Safety Sensors in Plano, TX


What is the 888LM?

The 888LM Smart Wall Control Panel is a device that we install to older openers that aren’t able to connect with the new MyQ technology without having to replace your opener. The MyQ technology allows you to use your smart phone to operate your opener with just a click of a button. The 888LM control panel is capable with security+ garage door openers manufactured between 1998 to the present.

Compatible Accessories

The security+ 2.0 accessories are:

  1. Model 891LM 1-Button remote control
  2. Model 893LM 3-Button remote control
  3. Model 890MAX 3-Button mini MAX remote control
  4. Model 893MAX 3-Button MAX remote control
  5. Model 895MAX 3-Button Premium MAX remote control
  6. Model 877LM Wireless Keyless Entry
  7. Model 877LM MAX Keyless Entry

MyQ Accessories

  1. Model 823LM Remote Light Switch
  2. Model 825LM Remote Light Control
  3. Model 828LM Liftmaster Internet Gateway
  4. Model 829LM Garage Door Gate Monitor

888lm 2

How hard is it to set up?

There are only 7 steps to install the 888LM

  1. First you need to turn off all power to the garage door opener
  2. You have to remove the existing wall control from the wall
  3. Then you need to label the wires on the existing door control-label the wire connected to the RED terminal-label the wire connected to the WHITE terminal. Disconnect the wires from existing door control.
  4. Next you need to connect the wires to the new MyQ control panel. When doing this make sure that the polarity is correct, matching Red wire to the R terminal and White wire to the W terminal.
  5. Then mount the MyQ Control Panel to the wall
  6. Now reconnect the power. There is a yellow command LED and a red learn LED that will blink quickly for up to 5 minutes as the control panel is recharging. Once the yellow command LED is glowing steady that means that the control panel is operational.
  7. In order to test the control panel, push the push bar to activate the garage door opener. And that’s it you are ready to start programming all your devices to the wall console.

Ready to Go!!

Now that you have installed your 888LM MyQ Control Panel, You are able to program all of your remotes, keypads, and MyQ enabled accessories. We do sell these control panels at our store located in Plano.  If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself we can always send someone out to help you figure out how it all works. Feel free to give us a call at (972) 422-1695!


By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door



Customer in Plano Gets Belt-Drive Openers

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX


A customer in Plano needed new garage door openers for his brand new home. He looked around on line to see if he could get a good deal. He also went to the local hardware stores to see what they had.

There are so many different garage door openers to choose from. There are screw drives, chain drives and belt drives.  He checked around and had a good idea of the kind of opener he wanted.

He called us for a quote on installation of the openers if he bought them from the hardware store.  We quoted him on installation of his openers.  We also quoted him on our LiftMaster belt drive that we intall.  He was surprised that our belt drive openers were less expensive installed than if we installed his store bought openers.  Our warranty was better and we could save him a trip back to the hardware store.

He went with the LiftMaster model 8550 belt drive which has a lifetime warranty on the belt and motor. We scheduled an appointment and had them installed in around two hours.

These openers are very quiet and reliable. There is a bedroom above this garage so whatever openers went in had to be quiet. He was very happy with the end result. You can’t hear a thing from that bedroom when the openers are operating.

Another happy customer!


By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

Is Your Remote Problem Actually A Circuit Board Problem?

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX, Misc. Garage Door Information in Plano, TX

Upset Steam Coming Out

A customer in McKinney recently came into our showroom in Plano to replace batteries and remotes that just seem to never work- no matter what he tried. So we decided to have a technician go out and look at the customer’s opener. Upon arrival, the technician was trouble-shooting the customers remotes and realized it was a bigger problem than just the remotes.


Once the technician had the situation assessed he told the customer that it wasn’t the remotes at all, in fact it was the opener itself. The circuit board had gone out on the customer’s opener which is why his remotes seem to never work. The technician proceeded to tell the customer that he should consider the benefits of a new garage door opener unit instead of just replacing the circuit board. He explained that it may be a little more money on the front end, but for the warranty and features that we offer with our new opener unit it would be well worth it in the long run.

So the customer decided to go with the Liftmaster 8550 ¾ HP beltdrive opener. It comes with a lifetime warranty on the belt and motor and a 5 year warranty on all other parts. Not to mention a 1 year warranty on the labor. The customer was very satisfied with technician and what he had done. So next time that there is a consistent problem with your remotes, either stop by our showroom to have them tested, or feel free to have one of our technicians come out and make sure it’s not a bigger problem!  You can call us at 972-422-1695.


By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

Sagging Chain? Could be Your Gear Kit Going Bad

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Maintenance in Plano, TX, Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX, Types of Garage Door Repair in Plano, TX

What is a Gear Kit?


Gear Kit

A gear kit is the driving mechanism that exists in most builder grade garage door openers.  On cheaper models, this drive gear is made of nylon plastic and tends to wear out roughly every 5 to 10 years.  In order to learn more about garage door openers that utilize steel encased, self-lubricating gears, click here!

The Motor Runs, but Nothing Happens!

Once the gears wear down enough, the teeth actually no longer touch each other, thus making the opener not turn at all.

Sagging Chain

An Example of What We Do to Fix It

One customer in Frisco was really depending on our technician to come out and help. When our technician arrived, he was able to see that the customer’s chain was off the sprocket on top of their garage door, causing the chain to droop lower than usual in their garage. If the chain happens to come off of the opener it will not function properly. It won’t be able to open or shut even if you hear the motor running. One reason that this occurs is from the gear kit on the opener wearing down over time.  There are many parts of a gear kit that can break over time, causing the opener to fail.

The technician was able to assist the customer with no problem. He had all the tools and parts he needed on his truck, replaced her gear kit, and was able to get the chain back on.  He got the opener up and running in no time. He reset all of the force and sensitivity settings, lubricated everything, and serviced the garage door as well.  This Frisco customer was very thankful for a job well done.

By Nick McGregor, General Manager of Plano Overhead Garage Door

Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX: Luxury or Necessity?

Written by Nick McGregor. Posted in Garage Door Openers in Plano, TX, Garage Door Safety in Plano, TX, Plano, TX, Garage Door Technology

Safety Sensor Liability

Safety Beam

If your garage door does not have safety photo eyes at the bottom corners of the garage door, then your garage door opener is no longer in accordance with Federal Law.  In 1993, President Clinton’s administration mandated that all garage door openers be installed with safety reversing sensors.  Most garage door repair companies either refuse to work on these older openers, or refuse to put a warranty on any work performed on them.  Not having updated safety mechanisms is a very dangerous liability in your own home.

Replacement Part Dilemma


Also, the top manufacturer of garage door openers in the world – Liftmaster- has stopped producing ANY replacement parts for garage door openers that were manufactured before 1993.  All other manufacturers are following their initiative.  Time flies, but it’s been over 20 YEARS since these garage door openers were produced!


Features and Convenience of New Garage Door Openers

  • Belt Drive: Quiet, almost undetectable from inside the home.Belt-Drive
  • Phone App:  Control your garage from anywhere in the world using your smartphone.myQClosingmyGarageDoor
  • Battery Backup: Works when you need it most, up to 40 times up and down with no power.BatteryBackup
  • Motion Sensing Lights:  Turn on automatically when you walk into garage.GarageDoorOpenerLights
  • Timer to Close Option:  Automatically closes itself after a set time to be sure you don’t leave it open.TimertoClose
  • Time and Temperature: Keep track of time, and see how hot it really is in that Texas garage.TimeandTemp
  • DC Motor: Smooth, Efficient, and Durable.DCMotor

Click HERE to learn more about the garage door openers that Plano Overhead Garage Door installs.

So how do we answer our original question?

The garage door opener is a necessity to almost all of us, therefore we should treat it as a luxury.  You never know when an appliance is going to give up on you, and there’s nothing worse than feeling trapped at home or being locked out.  We spend thousands of dollars replacing or upgrading cellphones and televisions, but often run our garage door openers until they quit altogether.

Go outside and take a look at that old garage door opener, wouldn’t it be nice to upgrade it?  Wouldn’t a quiet belt drive, a battery backup system, wireless phone control from the office, knowing the time and temperature, and having a safety reverse system be worth the investment?  Come by our showroom see what a garage door opener is supposed to look like!

By Nick McGregor

plano door logo Plano Overhead Garage Door
1100 N. Central Expy Suite #A
Plano, Texas 75074

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Hours of Operation

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M-F: 8:00 - 5:30
Sat: 9:00 - 1:00
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  • September 23, 2016:

    "We've used Plano Overhead many times since the late 1990's and have been pleased every time!"

    -Sally R.    Plano, TX
  • September 7, 1987:

    "Prompt, courteous, and took care of the job in a very professional manner.  The enthusiasm to do the job right was refreshing to say the least."

    -Jared F.    Richardson, TX
  • January 2, 2017:

    "The customer service of this company is great.  They go the extra mile to make things right.  Use this company.  They fix your problems correctly and have quick service too."

    -Richard S.    Dallas, TX
  • March 14, 1995:

    "Plano Overhead quickly diagnosed my problem, made the necessary repairs, and adjusted the door for proper operation.  All I can say is, again, thanks for the excellent service and very professional service personnel.  The cost was very reasonable as well!"

    -Lynn P.   McKinney, TX
  • December 4, 2006:

    "Great service! I couldn't be happier!  I'm just amazed that in today's hurry up, make a quick dollar and get out world, this kind of expert service and friendly attitude still exists.  I don't mind paying for this kind of service and attitude.  I'll never call anyone other than Plano Overhead!"

    -Steve S.   Wylie, TX
  • January 27, 2017:

    "My garage door spring broke this morning.  I had used Plano Overhead before and was really impressed with their customer service and the professionalism of their technicians.  They stand behind their work and their products.  I have always recommended them to people I know and will continue to do so!"

    -Mark Z.   Allen, TX
  • January 14, 2004:

    "Thank you for your timely and professional service and your reasonable prices!"

    -Emmett W.   Garland, TX
  • December 6, 1993:

    "As a small business owner myself, I would like to commend your company for taking the extra step many business fail to take these days. Please feel free to add me to your list of references."

    Johnathan T.    Plano, TX
  • March 12, 2011:

    "Great service, great price, great company."

    -Chris H.    Plano, TX
  • August 13, 2006:

    "I cannot believe I got a Thank You Note from you guys!  Your promptness, courtesy, sympathy, and efficiency all made my situation a little easier."

    Richard W.   Murphy, TX
  • June 27, 2013:

    "The entire process was fantastic.  I walked into their showroom, and a representative was more than ready to help!"

    -Tony B.    Plano, TX
  • February 23, 2017:

    "Technician arrived on time on very short notice.  He worked efficiently and completed work in about one hour.  He even took time to answer questions and go over the work!"

    -Viadhe T.    Carrolton, TX
  • May 7, 2014:

    "Everyone from the technicians to the receptionists are always so pleasant to deal with.  You will not be disappointed with this company!"

    -Betsy Y.    Allen, TX
  • May 30, 2015:

    "Service was great, very professional and helpful!"

    -Steve J.    Frisco, TX
  • August 8, 1997:

    "I appreciate the fast service.  It's great to find a company I can rely on.  I'll recommend you every chance I get!"

    Stephany R.   Richardson, TX
  • January 5, 2012:

    "It is great to find a local company that you can depend upon.  I will definitely recommend your company to others who may have problems with their garage door."

    -Christina L.     Allen, TX
  • October 31, 2014:

    "About as good an experience as you can get, the installer was professional about his business, showed up on time, and completed the job in the time estimated."

    -Mark M.     Frisco, TX
  • August 19, 2014:

    "Plano Overhead Garage Door runs their business the way consumers wish all businesses were run.  They are simply a premier service provider."

    -Arlene M.    Plano, TX
  • January 6, 2017:

    "Scheduling was very responsive both via email and over the phone.  They were very professional and timely during the install, and even programmed my vehicles to the garage door opener before leaving.  I will continue to hire Plano Overhead Door in result of my experience today and will highly recommend them to my neighbors!"

    -Jon M.    Plano, TX
  • June 17, 2014:

    "Punctual, knowledgeable, and fast."

    -Dawn H.    Richardson, TX
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