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Striving for the Ultimate “Smart” Home Using the Latest Tech! Part 5

My Quest to Increase My Home’s Intelligence

Liftmaster Garage Door Opener


Our new home purchase came with a belt-driven Liftmaster Garage Door opener with the latest MyQ technology. We had switched from a chain-driven unit without smart capabilities over to a Chamberlain Belt Driven unit with our previous home. To say this was an improvement would be an understatement. While chain-driven had proven reliable over the years, the sound alone was reason to change. Don’t get me wrong, chain-driven openers work well and are best for heavy wood doors and large 2-car and 3-car garage doors, but the sound is the biggest negative. Some will say the chain-driven units are more economical in cost, and with proper maintenance, the chain will last longer than a belt will. These individuals are right, but there are many positives to a belt-driven model.

Belt for Garage Door


Belt-driven models have made many strides over the last few years, and today’s high-strength belts will handle the heavy loads of 1 and 2 car garage doors. As discussed earlier, a chain-driven opener can be harsh and loud. This won’t be as distracting with a detached garage, but with an attached garage, expect to hear a chain-driven garage door open and close throughout the home. If you want to hear your family members coming and going at all hours, this is the unit for you. When we changed to a belt-driven model, it was a night and day difference to the decrease in decibel level. Lubricate or replace the garage door rollers, and the whole mechanism will work like butter. It was a substantially different experience altogether once the unit was in place.

A few years back, belt-driven units were substantially higher in price but have become more reasonable as of late. They were feature-rich with a battery backup and enhanced lighting schemes, but you can find chain-driven units with these features today. I would not buy a garage door opener without a smart intelligence system built-in. What exactly is MyQ? MyQ brings your garage door opener into your Smart Home atmosphere. You can set up your device to alert your phone when the door is opened or closed. You can open your door remotely from anywhere in the world provided you have internet access. Advanced settings allow you to schedule automatic door closings and openings throughout the day. This same feature can be applied to the lighting. Within the MyQ application on your mobile device, you can share access to your door with other family members/friends. Do you receive many packages from Amazon? Take advantage of Amazon Key, which is compatible with any MyQ enabled device. Amazon will deliver packages into your garage. Fear “porch pirates, no longer!

MyQ by Chamberlain


If your garage door opener is not a smart, driven device, there are options. MyQ is only one such option, and a package can be bought separately to work with your existing equipment. The important takeaway is to ensure you have a good WIFI signal within your garage. You may need to purchase a WIFI signal extender. This repeating unit will take your existing WIFI signal and repeat it, thereby extending the overall range over more square footage. The larger the house, the more repeaters needed. Once your device is smart-enabled, you can work with Apple’s Homekit, Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s, and several other smart ecosystems. Set up tasks and schedule your IFTT (If this, then that). Many possibilities are available depending on how much time you have. Remember- make it easy for yourself, as this should always be your goal. Part 6

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