Are electronic garage doors secure?

15/09/2014

The short answer to the question in the title is ‘yes’; as long as the electric openers are of good quality and they are installed correctly. The method of installation will vary according to the type of garage door that you have. ..

Up-and over garage doors

a) Basic Installation

The basic installation works well as long as the electric operator is of high quality and is installed correctly. A common mistake made when installing these units on up-and-over garage doors is the removal of the internal locking latch cables/rods. This is a mistake because it the door will not be able to close automatically and lock internally, therefore reducing security. As long as the locking cables are removed, the door should be able to lock internally when automatically closed.

Many good quality automatic openers have locking latches built-in to the boom in addition to sensors which check that the door is locked firmly.

b) No handle?

It is possible to order a garage door without a handle hole. Without the handle fitted their will be no manual locking available, so the door will rely purely on the automated system to lock/unlock.

The Hormann Supramatic utilises a patented steel lock which is built into the towing arm which is thus controlled by the motor, which in turn creates a more solid locking system. The Hormann operator’s latch locking system is equipped with a simple pull-cord giving you a secondary method of access in the event that the electric system breaks down or the power goes off.

Bear in mind that different systems provide different levels of resistance and that you get what you pay for; cheap operators will have flimsy towing arms and rail systems to keep the door and will therefore be easier for burglars to break.

c) De-latch kit

Arguably the most effective method of increasing security if you have a retractable up-and-over door is to install a ‘de latch’ kit; a simple mechanical device that is attached to the operator towing arm, as well as the internal door locking handle and uses a spring tension system to pull the locking cables/rods in to place when the door is being operated manually.

Sectional garage doors

The de-latch described above system is neither compatible nor necessary as a security measure in the case of sectional doors, which are much more solid by nature and are totally inflexible when closed. These are perhaps among the most secure doors on the market, even in basic form.

Side-hinged doors

There are few independently-manufactured de-latch systems for side-hinged doors, but these are somewhat notorious for being temperamental and unreliable.

Steel rod towing kits do an infinitely better job of holding side-hinged doors in place, as do piston-ram systems.

Roller Doors

All roller garage doors (steel and aluminium) are secured solely by the motor drive unit in either an internal or external capacity. The reason these doors are used so widely on shop fronts is because of the impressive level of security they provide.

As with every other door and price of equipment, high quality is the key to a secure roller door, as the various nylon and metal parts of cheaper doors are prone to breakage, eventually lead to an ineffective door,. Despite this, most roller doors will do their job of securing a garage or shop front effectively while in full working order.

For more information on garage door security, please contact York Garage Doors on 01904 275 182.


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