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Old 05-10-2022, 01:32 PM   #1
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OUCH! @#%$ Garage Door Opener

In late December 2021 we moved into our new home with attached RV garage. Since then we have had the coach in and out of the garage several times. Last Friday we had to pull her out to take her to General RV for a check-up. DW was was backing her out when something on top of the coach made contact with the garage door. That something was the front bathroom vent. It was taken off.

Thinking someone had left it open and understandably also thinking there would be no further problems, DW continued to back the rig out. Once again debris from the roof fell to the ground. (the Mach 3 logo from the AC unit).

I looked up and noticed the garage door was much lower than it should have been. Brought out a ladder and discovered the lanyard used to disengage the garage opener from door had wrapped around the roof top antenna and as the coach was backing out tightened enough to disengage the door from the opener resulting in the door slipping down far enough to restrict clearance need to back out of the garage.

Called my son-in-law who is allowed to climb ladders. He was able to reengage the opener so that we could open it enough to get the rig out.

Fast forward to today. The repairman showed up and was able to fix everything in less than an hour...cost $225. He did point out that while the overhead type of opener the builder installed is satisfactory a better solution would have been to install a jackshaft style of opener. And while he could have sold us on one, he told us we should get 10-15 years of service out of the one we have.
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Old 05-10-2022, 01:42 PM   #2
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Did you have the son in law remove the lanyard while he was up there?
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Old 05-10-2022, 01:44 PM   #3
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Sorry to hear of your misfortune. Definitely something to watch for in the future. Maybe a mirror mounted in the garage that shows the driver the top of the roof of the coach? Just thinking?
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Old 05-10-2022, 01:52 PM   #4
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Liftmaster Jack Knife opener

My Liftmaster Jack Knife door opener had an odd feature. When we installed it we set the full open set point to fully clear the 12 ft. door opening. After a few days, the door would settle down 3 or 4 inches. Unfortunately my RV just cleared the door opening and if the door settled 4 inches there would be a contact problem. I think the installer put the wrong type of opener on the door.

In retrospect, I should designed for a 14' door, not a 12' door. When I designed, the garage, I was sure that any RVs that I would consider would fit under 12 ft.

Your idea of the perfect RV will change. Plan for worst case.

Regards, Jerry
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Old 05-10-2022, 02:28 PM   #5
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Mount the camera to one of the rafters of the garage in a "closed Circuit" configuration with a small television (or a big one for that matter) right in front of the driver position when coach is fully in the garage. Easy to see, good perspective and angle from the camera. Worth a few hundred bucks for the camera and flat panel.

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Old 05-10-2022, 03:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mudfrog View Post
Did you have the son in law remove the lanyard while he was up there?
Don't want to do that. If the power ever fails.....or the house catches fire you can't get the garage door open.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Did you have the son in law remove the lanyard while he was up there?
That was my first order of business! It is kind of a useless feature. My door is 14 feet high and is considered a commercial door. When the RV is in the garage, I can't access the lanyard and when the garage is empty I need a very tall ladder to access the opener.

The RV bay opens to a tandem/double garage, so there isn't an issue of being locked out of the RV garage.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:07 PM   #8
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Don't want to do that. If the power ever fails.....or the house catches fire you can't get the garage door open.
Have him tie a knot in it to raise it a couple of inches. You can also change the handle to something that won’t catch on the top of the RV.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:18 PM   #9
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We have an attached rv garage as well with a lift master door unit. I left the lanyard manual release rope attached but first thing I did after backing out the first time was cut the plastic pull down handle off the lanyard to prevent it from catching on the top or back of the coach. Nearly 4 years now without issue.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:20 PM   #10
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I have a roll up but I still don't trust it, I won't back out till I see it's all the way up and stopped and I always watch when it closes, never leave before seeing it closed all the way. Had a couple incidents which is why I always watch it now. The other thing I hate is it won't close when the sun hits one of the sensors, tried everything, it just won't. Have to lower it with the chain which only moves it 1/2" per pull.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:24 PM   #11
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Boy, I sure am envious of you guys with a coach garage right on the same property. I live in a gated community with strict architectural rules, and I quickly learned that my RV garage would have to exactly match the architecture of the house (fairly classic "southern colonial 'cottage'" and it would cost me as much to put up the matching garage as it was to buy the house..... So, its sits in the 3 car driveway.

Does that make any sense to anyone? Never did to me....

Gary
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:25 PM   #12
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Lessons we all learn. Sometimes the hard way. But your post serves a greater purpose for future readers and those that are considering building the coach house. They will discover in planning that they need to use a more commercial style door lift even though the builder may be less experienced.

And that is why I have a 14 foot high and 16 foot wide door. Do I need 16 feet wide? No, but let me tell you the advantages.
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Old 05-10-2022, 03:28 PM   #13
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The lesson here is when something goes bump, stop and investigate, don't just keep going.
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Old 05-11-2022, 07:41 AM   #14
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I have a 14' door with the jack shaft opener.

Early one morning before getting ready to leave I open the door but stop it before all the way up. There are a lot of time I only open the door part way but this one time I had let it go pretty high up, more then my typical 7-8'.

When I get ready to leave I start the coach. and wall around the front by garage door and unplug power cord and roll up. Walk around the front by garage door and get in coach. I look all around and then pull out. As I am pulling out very slow I hear a noise. I slam on the brakes. Look around and see where the top front of coach has hit the garage door. Before I have a chance to get out and see everything the wife hits the opener to raise the door the rest of the way. The door did go up but was out if it's track and was U ed.

Pulled coach out and then had to really work to get the door back down. After a lot of work got it down and bent it back straight. Had to call garage opener guy to put the cables back on and get the door back in its track. Cost was $150.00 for garage repair. The coach has a few scratches on the front cap but hard to see and have not taken it in for repairs. Based on what I am seeing repairs cost my guess is around $2-4K

Now when I pull out I look out the side window to verify the door is all the way up and if I only open part way I make sure no higher then 7' so I know it is low.
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