Installing a garage door openerInstalling a new garage door opener is a task that can seem harder than it actually is.

The truth of the matter is that, unlike many other potential items you might install in your home, this requires relatively little skill or experience to install.

If you have bought a garage door opener already, this article will break down the process into 10 easy to follow steps, which will enable you to get a feel for the task before you break out your toolbox.

Remember rule number one, though – SAFETY FIRST.

Step 1: Inspect your garage door

Like most things, the garage door opener is only as good as what it has to work with.

The first thing you need to do is to ensure that your garage door is ready for the opener you are about to install.

If the door is stiff to open, then lubrication or minor repairs may be necessary before you even take the opener out of the box.

A garage door needs to open smoothly and with ease, otherwise the opener won’t operate properly.

Step 2: Ensure you have the necessary tools for the job.

The tools and materials you will need to install a garage door opener include:

  • Hammer
  • Electric drill
  • Stepladder
  • Screwdrivers
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Pliers
  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Steel brackets
  • Wood for shims (1-inch and 2-inch pieces)
  • Board for mounting the unit (1×6 inches)
  • Safety gear – gloves, goggles, etc.
  • Instruction manual – ALWAYS read and refer to the manufacturer’s manual for installation and use.

Step 3: Check the electrics

Characteristically, there is always an electrical socket located in the ceiling to accommodate either a garage door opener or any other electrical device that you might install in your garage.

If such a socket is missing, then you will have to install one.

In the event you have to install extra wiring, always be sure to turn off the appropriate breakers in the breaker box before starting work.

Step 4: Assemble the unit

Garage door openers tend to come disassembled in order to fit into boxes that are more conveniently shaped and sized for you to bring home.

Therefore, the first thing you will need to do is assemble the unit.

Read and follow the assembly directions in the manufacturer’s handbook.

Step 5: Install housing to the ceiling

If there is no existing garage door opener being replaced, then you will have to construct the housing that your opener will be placed into.

This will also be laid out in the manufacturer’s manual, so be sure to follow all directions carefully.

Also, make sure that you are installing the housing into solid wood, and not merely the sheetrock, as the sheetrock will simply fall apart from the weight.

Step 6: Attach the garage door bracket

Following the directions in the manual, attach the bracket that will hold the door opener on the garage door wall.

This will complete the housing that will hold the garage door opener in place.

Step 7: Mount garage bracket end

Once the bracket is installed, then attach the garage door end of the opener to the bracket, as per the manufacturer’s instruction.

Be sure that the other end is on a solid surface, safe from falling or being knocked over.

Step 8: Mount the other end into the housing

After securing the garage door side, lift the remaining end and place into the housing.

Follow manufacturer’s manual for proper mounting procedure.

Step 9: Install additional components

Different units will come with different components – from motion detectors for safety to keypads and other accessories. This is the time to install and connect all such components.

Step 10: Make all final connections

After installation is complete, make sure all components are appropriately connected and plugged in, as instructed in the manufacturer’s manual.


These 10 steps will help break down the seemingly overwhelming task of installing a garage door opener into shorter, easy to follow steps.

The process is quite easy, provided that instructions are carefully and safely followed.

And always remember rule number one – SAFETY FIRST.