How to Open a Garage Door Manually When the Power Is Out

When bad weather comes in, you can face many problems, like the power going out.
You face inconveniences from no lights, cable, or inability to open your garage doors. 

B&W Garage Door knows how frustrating this can be, especially if you have a garage door opener without a backup battery.
You pull into the driveway and cannot open the door, trapped outside or inside. You sit there wondering if there is a way to open it manually.

No matter the problem causing the power outage, we will help you open that door. 

How to Open a Garage Door Manually

Table of Contents

How To Open a Garage Door Without a Backup Battery

The door does not want to budge; just remain calm, as every modern garage typically has an emergency release.
You find the system installed in the garage, allowing you to open the door outside or inside.
The next time you face a power problem, there are a few steps you can follow to open your garage door successfully. 

release cord
Release cord

Opening The Garage Door From the Inside

  • First, find any locks or latches outside near the garage door and ensure they’re open. 
  • Next, disconnect the power cord from your automatic door opener.
    A release cord hangs from the center rail with a red handle over the door track.
    The cable attaches to the trolley that connects the arm of the door to the center track. You can only use this handle when your door is closed. 
  • Pull down the release handle, disconnecting the door from the trolley to move your door manually. 
  • Once you have completed the above step, pull the door from the bottom until it stops, and ensure it remains in place before you let go of it.
  • Once you make it outside with your care, you can pull the door down to close it, as the lock bar will automatically slide back into the lock.
Release cable

Opening The Garage Door From The Outside

  • As with the previous steps, you must first locate your emergency release handle near the top of the door.
    It is a small lock that stores the release cable.
    Still, you will need to have the corresponding key to open it. 
  • Next, unlock the release cord. Do this by turning the key and hauling the lock tumbler to reveal the cable.
    The cable will help trigger the release mechanism to place it in manual mode.
  • Now, another lock is next to that handle keeping the door closed, and you need to lower it from the emergency release kit.
    Using your key, unlock the door and turn the handle vertically.
  • Pull the garage door up straight using your hands.
    Ensure that it remains open before parking your car. Once inside, you can pull the down to the closed position.

Manual Opening Garage Door Safety Tips

An essential thing when manually opening a garage door with an automatic door opener is always to be safe. 

  1. The most important thing is to unplug the automatic door opener before manually opening or reconnecting it.
    This is an essential step because when the power comes back on, the opener will try to open the door, making it harder for you to reconnect.
  2. Another crucial thing is to know when to call us at B&W Garage Doors.
    When disengaging the trolley and the door does not move, there might be a problem with the springs. We recommend calling a professional, as the springs are difficult to work with.
  3. Never pull the emergency release when your garage door is open or ajar, as you may struggle to close it after a power outage.
    Neither should you do this when the door is open, as the door will crash down. Instead, wait until the power is back to close the door or call us to help.   
  4. Another safety tip is never leaving the open door unattended when the power is out.
    You have disengaged it from the garage door opener.
    Nothing keeps the door in place, and it can slam shut.
    Also, keep the doorway clear and keep kids at a safe distance. 
  5. Use the manual lock next to the door; looking like a metal manual lock.
    With a power outage, the automatic lock is inactive.
    Slide that locks into place to protect your home during an outage.
  6. When connecting the door again, it starts to shake or move into an uneven position; something is wrong. In this case, calling our technicians at B&W Garage Doors is best.

Resetting Your Garage Door After a Power Outage

If ever your garage door opener stops working after the power goes out.
The best solution is to reconnect the garage door to the opener.
If you tried reconnecting it and it still does not work, then it is time to call your garage door technician. 

Reconnecting The Opener That Has an Automatic Trolley

The majority of garage door openers come with an automatic trolley. The process of reconnecting it with the garage door and opener is straightforward. What you need to do is reset the garage door after the power is back on by following these steps:

  1. Ensure the door is shut and has no gaps between the floor and the garage door. 
  2. If the automatic opener is still unplugged, you must plug it back in to help it reconnect automatically. 
  3. Press the close button if your remote has two separate buttons that open and close the door. When you do this, the opener engages, allowing it to reconnect automatically. 
  4. Most importantly, wait for the reconnection to complete, as the chain should move the trolley into its place to connect with the arm on the door. 
  5. Now, test the opener by opening and closing the door twice to ensure that everything is in working condition. 

Reconnecting Without an Automatic Trolley

If there is no automatic trolley present, you will need to connect the garage door arm to the trolley manually following these steps and applies to reconnect the door when the power returns:

  1. As with the first step in shutting the door with the automatic trolley, ensure the door is completely closed. 
  2. Next, pull the emergency release cord towards the door as you notice the switch moving into place and hear a click sound when it engages.
  3. Now, manually connect the garage door arm to the opener trolley. You must raise the door about two feet until it clicks in place. 
  4. Next, text the opener once it is reconnected to the door and plugged back in to see if it works correctly. Open your door using the remote and see if it has a jerky movement, and listen if there is any buckling. Then close your garage door again. 

What Can You Do To Avoid Manually Opening The Garage Door?

When your garage door does not open with a power failure, you might wonder how to avoid this.
The good thing is that you can open the door manually, but to avoid panic and hassle, install a garage door opener with a backup battery. 

When the power goes down, the door will open with the battery, and everything from the keypad, safety sensors, and the opener will work.
If you want to install an automatic garage door opener, we are here to give you peace of mind. 

Contact us today for all your garage door opener installation and repair needs. 


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