When it comes time to replace your existing garage door opener, should you upgrade to something quieter and easier to operate or stick with what you have? Many homeowners choose to upgrade to belt-driven garage door opener systems because of the benefits over chain-driven systems. But is it worth it for your particular garage door? Here are a few of the pros and cons.
The most obvious benefit of choosing a belt-driven garage door opener is the sound improvements. Belt-driven systems are significantly quieter than chain driven systems because of the smooth operation of the rubberized belt system that eliminates the unavoidable metal on metal noises from a chain system. You won't wake all the neighbors with an unholy screeching every time you open the garage door. Additionally, if you have an attached garage with a living space above, a belt system can provide a lot of noise relief to the person living in the space above.
Belt-driven systems are also very strong and durable. In the past, chain drives were considered stronger than belt drives but new belt technology with steel-reinforced rubber drive systems has vastly improved the strength and the amount of door weight a belt system can move.
Because the drive system functions through the movement of a rubber belt, it requires no lubrication. You'll save money on lubrication products and time on maintenance.
If you choose to replace your existing garage door opener with a belt system, they are readily available at almost any home improvement store or garage door specialist's shop.
The biggest disadvantage of choosing a belt-drive system is the price tag. Belt-driven systems are typically more expensive than chain driven, costing typically between $160 and $450 or more for just the opener system.
Another disadvantage of a belt system is that it can be affected by things like extreme heat or cold and high humidity. The rubberized system can expand and contract based on temperatures. This can negatively affect the belt's performance.
When properly maintained and lubricated, chain systems may last longer than belt systems. Because of the rubber materials used and how rubber can slowly wear when exposed to the elements, replacement of the belt in a belt system may be necessary at some point in the life of the garage door opener. However, replacement belts are fairly affordable and very simple to install.