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You and your garage door have been seeing each other on and off for what, like, 10 years? You bump into each other every time you leave home. Heck, you’ve even introduced it to your parents. Things are serious, and it’s time to take the relationship to the next level: automate. But before you take that next big step, there are some crucial things that you should know about your garage door.

No, we’re not talking about whether it likes romantic picnics and long walks on the beach. We’re talking about things like:

1. What kind of door is it?


A typical tip-up garage door

Everyone has a type, am I right? Some like the strong, silent type while others get along just fine with the boisterous extrovert. When it comes to garage doors, it’s important to know whether you’re dealing with a tip-up, sectional or roll-up type garage door as this will determine what type of operator you’ll need to install. Sectional and tip-up doors can generally use the same type of operator (though with different rail kits), but roll-up doors will require a special roll-up door motor that sits inside or directly adjacent the drum.

2. How well is it balanced?
A small child should be able to lift the door with relative ease
Probably also a good question to ask if you’re in the dating game! Most garage doors rely on counterbalance springs to do the lifting (not the motor!), and it’s important that these springs are well-balanced. A good rule of thumb is that, if your granny or small child is unable to open or close the door with relative ease, the springs are probably about as well-balanced as Christian Bale’s character in American Psycho. The door also shouldn’t rise or fall more than about 100mm if left in any position between fully open and fully closed.

3. Will there be enough space to install a motor? 


It’s important that there is enough space to install a garage door motor

Hey, man, we all need some space every now and again, am I right? Garage door motors do, too! Especially when it comes to roll-up garage door operators, it’s important to first check that there’s sufficient space to fit the operator adjacent the drum. If there isn’t, you may need to get your hands on a special adaptor.

4. Will it be a left- or right-hand installation?
This has nothing to do with the door’s political leanings, but it’s a very important consideration with regard to roll-up garage doors. You may find that your RDO has been factory-set to be installed on the right-hand end of your garage door (when viewed from inside the garage looking out), and some minor modifications are necessary in order to convert it to a left-hand installation.
5. What are you looking for in a motor?
Much like a potential suitor, every garage door motor offers something unique in terms of specifications and functionality, and it’s a good idea to be clear on what you’re looking for. Are you after something very basic that opens and closes the door and nothing more? Or would you prefer something more feature-rich that can, for example, be locked electronically and has the ability to close automatically? Whatever your unique requirements, rest assured that, somewhere out there, there’s a garage door motor for you.
The CENTURION RDO II with onboard multichannel code-hopping receiver is available now from your nearest CENTURION branch or distributor. .
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