Why You Need a Jackshaft Garage Opener

Garage doors can be a fit finicky, and when they don’t function properly, they can be a real drag. After all, how can you use a garage if the door won’t open? Luckily, there have been some positive developments in the world of garage doors. In recent years, Jackshaft garage door openers, which are mounted to the wall to the side of the door instead of overhead, have become increasingly popular as an innovative and efficient way to keep garage doors fully functional.

The Jackshaft garage opener offers enhanced storage capacity, variable installation options, smooth or silent operation, an emergency backup battery, and enhanced security features. The Jackshaft opener is also ideal for cathedral ceilings. 

There are several instances where you might need or prefer a Jackshaft garage door opener. These instances include but are not limited to when you need a quiet garage door opener, when there’s limited headroom, or when the garage ceiling is very high. Let’s look at the various reasons why you might opt for a Jackshaft opener and how it’ll benefit you.

What Is a Jackshaft Garage Opener?

Garage Door Installation And Repair At Home

A Jackshaft garage door opener is one that’s connected to the door’s torsion bar and is mounted to either the right or left side of a garage door. This is an alternative to the classic overhead mount, which is suspended from the ceiling.

The Jackshaft functions by nudging a trolley down a chain to open the door. The garage opener operates with the famous jackshaft principle in which a door with a shaft, chain or sprockets is the driving element. You can install the jackshaft operator on vertical lift doors, standard lift sectional doors, rolling doors, or grilles. 

Jackshaft garage openers offer a handful of other useful features, such as MyQ technology, which allows you to open or close a garage door from anywhere using a smart device. Jackshaft openers also come with a photo-eye-based reversal system for safety, an emergency cord, and an LED light.

How Does a Jackshaft Opener Work?

The Jackshaft garage door opener is a unique door opener installed on either the left or right of the garage door and connected to the torsion bar of the door to raise or lower it. You can use it with any garage door, including a regular, high, or vertical lift door.

You can use the Jackshaft garage doors with garage doors up to 14 feet high.

An example of how the Jackshaft opener works can be found in the force setting. The force setting helps measure the force needed to open or close garage doors. You can also regulate the travel limits, which is the point at which the door will stop while going up or down.

You should use black and yellow buttons. While the yellow button closes the door, the black button opens the door. Below is how to set it up.

How to Set the Opening Position

  • Press down the black button. Hold it until the LED light flashes slowly before you release it. 
  • Press down the black button until the door gets to your desired open position — that’s the up position. 
  • Then, press the programmed remote to set the Up or Open limit before closing the door. 
  • Once the door closes, press and release either the yellow button or the black one. This stops the door. 

How to Set the Closed Position

  • Push the yellow button and hold it down until the door gets to your desired closed or down position.
  • As soon as it closes, toggle the door back and forth to get to your desired closed position.
  • Then push the door remote control to set the down close, or down limit. Then the door opens. 

How Much Room Do You Need for a Jackshaft Garage Door Opener? 

The 8500W model (on Amazon) measures 21.25″ tall, 7.5″ wide, and 7.9″ deep. This can be compared to the previous 3800/3900 jackshaft, which measures 16.25′′ tall, 6.01′′ wide, and 6.85′′ deep.

You’ll need at least eight inches of space on the left and right sides of the garage door in order to install the Jackshaft door opener. You’ll also need three inches or more above the door. And don’t forget that you’ll need an electrical outlet nearby!

Benefits of Jackshaft Garage Door Openers 

Garage Door Installation And Repair At Home

The Jackshaft garage door opener features some benefits compared to the traditional overhead options. Therefore, many home builders who have not yet upgraded to this latest system are doing so. The following are the benefits of the Jackshaft garage door opener.

Variable Installation Choices

A garage door installed by the side of the door seems more beneficial to garages with very high or low ceilings. Many homes can’t accommodate the trolley garage door openers with rails because of the need for 48 inches of overhead clearance above the garage door. This is where the Jackshaft openers become a handy, reliable, and effective option. 

Enhanced Security Features

There are guaranteed high-tech security accessories linked with the Jackshaft garage door opener. Some of these security features include safety sensors and a security reversal system. The upgraded Jackshaft opener features a 200-watt light for better safety and convenience.  

Improved Storage Capacity

Since the side of the garage door installs the Jackshaft garage door openers, it provides more ceiling space for things like canoes, bicycles, and other large goods. This can make a big difference if you’ve got a relatively small garage — or just lots of stuff!

Improved Security Codes

Old garage doors operate with a single frequency code to open or close the door. This is defective because such a single code frequency could be duplicated to another remote and used to gain access to your garage.

The latest garage door openers, including the Jackshaft, use rolling door codes that generate new door codes any time you open the door. This prevents duplication and associated access to your property. 

Besides that, Jackshaft and some of the latest models offer WiFi connections and smartphone administration, plus the LiftMaster and MyQ, which are advanced safety and security features developments. 

Silent Operation

This garage door opener works with a direct current that enables it to start slowly and speed up before slowing down again and finally shutting off. Because you can mount the opener on the wall rather than attaching it to a joist, it limits the noise and vibrations that can be bothersome. 

Suitable for Cathedral Ceilings

If you use the trolley-style garage door opener in a cathedral ceiling, be ready for significant issues. With that, you will need four feet of additional space behind the door, which can be excessive between the ceiling and the door opener housing and could warrant using a triangle bracket that may be hazardous.