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Chain Drive vs. Belt Drive Garage Door

Chain Drive vs. Belt Drive Garage Door

The garage door opener is a piece of equipment that’s easy to overlook. When working well, it just does the job in the background each time you press the button – and you don’t think much about it otherwise. 

With that said, if you build a new garage and need to add an opener, or if your old one has broken and needs to be replaced, shopping for an opener will suddenly be on your to-do list. There are two primary options on the market today – chain drive and belt drive – and we’ll break down those two choices in the article below so you can pick the one that is right for your needs. 

Are you getting ready to build a new garage on your property? A metal garage is a great choice, and nobody does metal garages better than American Steel Carports, Inc. As a starting point, you are welcome to explore our Build & Price tool to see what is possible when you work with us. And, of course, you can simply contact us if you need help with anything and our team will jump into action. 

Understanding the Difference: Chain vs Belt Garage Door Opener

To get started, let’s talk about what the difference is between a chain drive garage door opener and a belt drive garage door opener. For the most part, it’s all there in the name – a chain drive opener uses a long chain to pull the door up when it is being opened, and then reverse to lower it back down again. 

For the most part, a belt drive garage door opener works the same way. Instead of a chain, a long rubber belt is deployed, but the end result is the same. Each of these types of openers can work nicely, and if you purchase a quality unit from a trusted brand, you should get reliable performance for a long time to come. 

Some Pros and Cons of Chain vs Belt Drive Openers

Since they work in largely the same manner, and the experience for the user is exactly the same – you push the button and watch the opener do the work – it might seem like it doesn’t really matter which one you select. However, there are some performance pros and cons to think about when making your choice to outfit a garage door. 

Let’s start with the chain drive garage door opener version –

Pros of a Chain Drive

  • A good chain drive opener can last for a long time, provided you care for it with some basic maintenance every few months.
  • Chain drive garage door openers tend to be more affordable than belt drive models, especially for openers that can handle large doors. So, if you are on a tight budget for this purchase, going with the chain drive could be a smart move. 

Cons of a Chain Drive

  • You can expect relatively noisy operation out of a chain drive garage door opener. If your garage is part of your home and near the living areas, the level of noise produced might be annoying to those inside. 
  • In some cases, the lifting action of a chain drive opener will be a little rough. It can be a little shaky on the way up, although the door will get there in the end. 

As you might expect, the list for a belt drive opener stands largely in contrast to the list above, as you’ll see below –

Pros of a Belt Drive Opener

  • Unlike a chain drive, a belt drive unit will open and close very quietly. This is nice if people spend time in or around the garage or if you have to open and close the door frequently. 
  • There is basically no maintenance to be done on a belt drive opener. And, if the belt happens to break at some point, replacing it is an easy and affordable job. 
  • Belt drive openers are strong, making them the smart choice in most cases if you have a heavy door to lift. 

Cons of a Belt Drive Opener

  • In exchange for all of the great performance attributes of a belt drive garage door opener, you are going to pay more in most cases on the purchase. Whether or not that price is worth it will be something you need to decide for yourself.

Build Your Custom Garage Today With All the Features You Need

So, which type of garage door opener is right for you? That will be your decision to make in the end, but you should have a pretty good understanding of your options now that you’ve read through the information above. And remember, if a new garage is on your agenda, you’ll be in good hands if you decide to work with the team at American Steel Carports, Inc. on the project. Don’t hesitate to get in touch to get started!



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