Why You Should Disable the Outside Locks to Your Automatic Garage Door

We just got an emergency call for a garage door repair that could easily be avoided, so we thought we’d share one homeowner’s grief. It seems his teenage son had accidentally locked the garage door from the outside. And then someone tried to use the automatic opener on the inside and ended up frying the motor.

It’s a pretty common mistake. But like many household mishaps, it’s one that can easily be avoided with a few simple and easy proactive steps. 

Most garage doors have some way to lock the garage door from the outside. This is in case you don’t have an automatic opener. But most families have garage door openers these days, at least those who park their cars indoors.

Explain To Your Family the Importance of Checking the Locks

One of the first things homeowners can do is to educate their family members about the proper use of the garage door and its locks. Children and teenagers may not be aware of the consequences of locking the garage door from the outside. It’s important to check if the door is unlocked before attempting to use the opener.

How to Disable the Lock

That’s why if you have an automatic opener, you should double check your locking mechanism is disabled. Don’t worry. All garage door openers have automatic lock protection to keep your garage secure. When we install an opener, we routinely disable the outside lock by screwing the lock rod to the door. This will prevent the lock from being used. 

If the door opener stops functioning, the homeowner will need to re-engage the garage locking mechanism. To do this, they will need to remove the screw that was used to disable the lock rod until the opener has been repaired. Once the door opener has been repaired, the screw can be replaced to disable the locking mechanism once again.

It’s also important to note that some older garage doors may not have automatic lock protection. Homeowners should check the owner’s manual to determine if their door requires more secure locks.

Kids and the Buttons They Love to Push

Disabling the lock can be critical because it is so easy to lock it from the outside, even without a key. Kids love to push buttons. And while they may be playing rocketship when they accidentally set the lock, the next time you push the automatic button, you may very well crash the motor.

It won’t be the end of the world, but avoiding the problem in the first place couldn’t be simpler. Check your lock and make sure its disabled. You just might save yourself an emergency house call from your Roseville garage door repairman.

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