Garage Door Will Not Move – Motor Troubleshooting

Published on By Champion Garage Door Repair

A garage door that will not move can cause a myriad of problems for you and those that live in your household. It may mean that your garage and house are partially or completely vulnerable to bad weather and criminal activity, and may make it difficult or impossible for you to remove your vehicles from your garage, meaning you may have to make alternative travel plans for the foreseeable future. These consequences are indeed irritating. Luckily, many garage door opener manufacturers have installed features on their products that make it easier to ascertain problems and fix them appropriately.

Garage Door Opener - Back Side

Garage Door Opener – Back Side (LM model)

Most modern garage door openers have an LED warning system for informing you about potential problems they may be having. Though useful, these warnings are often still cryptic, so here we aim to expand and allow you to troubleshoot your faulty garage door. Most newer Chamberlain, Craftsman and Liftmaster garage door opener/garage door motors will have either 1 single LED light that will blink to indicate faults, or “up and down” arrows that will blink in a sequence to indicate faults. These lights can guide you in the right direction about potential faults, but some additional inspection is indeed required to discover and repair any problems.

5 Blinks of a Single LED Light, or 1 Blink of the “Up Arrow” Followed by 5 Blinks of the “Down Arrow”

This warning is quite broad, and can encapsulate the range of issues that we have listed below.

  • The garage door travel is obstructed
  • The motor has overheated
  • The garage door opener trolley is obstructed
  • The motor’s RPM sensor is defective

As aforementioned, these problems are quite broad, meaning it may be difficult to pinpoint what is wrong. The rest of this section advises you on what actions to take in the appropriate order. We will first advise you to check for basic problems before moving on to more complex issues. Hopefully, your garage door only requires a quick fix. If not, read on to the end of this section.

If your motor has overheated, the best thing to do is to simply leave it alone for around 30 minutes to an hour and allow it to cool down. Then simply try it again. If it now works, you just had an overheated motor.

If that doesn’t work, try unplugging the garage door opener/garage door motor from its power outlet, leave it for 60 seconds or so, and then plug it back in again. This resets the logic board and may fix your problem, especially if the problem was internal or a fault with the motor’s circuitry

Still No Luck Troubleshooting Your Garage Door Opener?

You may have a bent garage door track, garage door is off track or faulty/locked door latch that is causing the problem. In this case, pull the emergency release handle of your door and try to move the door manually along its tracks with your hands. Be careful not to strain yourself physically when doing this. Check for any bends or irregularities in the track that may be stopping the door’s travel. It is also worth checking that the door latch is fully retracted too, as this can cause travel problems also.

Is the garage door traveling normally when you move it manually? A bent or damaged rail may be blocking the travel. Check the garage door’s rail for any damage and replace or repair it if necessary. This is the likely cause if you can move the garage door along its track normally on your own.

Garage Door Opener - Circuit Board

Garage Door Opener – Circuit Board (LM model)

If there is no obvious rail damage, then check for trolley travel along the garage door opener’s rail by activating the door and moving the trolley across the rail in both directions. If the inner trolley stops somewhere along the rail, this indicates damage that needs to be repaired or replaced. The inner trolley may also need replacing, though sometimes a seemingly-faulty trolley is actually caused by a faulty RPM sensor. In this case, have the RPM sensor repaired or replaced and then reassess the garage door’s condition.

Garage Door Opener Logic Board/Circuity Error

The error here is much simpler to diagnose. These 6 blinks simply indicate an internal error within the circuitry of the garage door opener/garage door motor. This usually requires you to replace the logic board in order to regain proper operation. However, it may be worth unplugging your garage door opener/motor from its power outlet for 60 seconds, before then plugging it back in again. This will allow the logic board to reset, and may also fix your problem. Sometimes “turning it off and on again” is the solution to many technological problems!

We hope that this short guide has given you some guidance on troubleshooting a garage door that will not move. Needless to say, if none of these tips or suggestions work, we highly recommend to try our troubleshooting garage door issues guide or calling out a local professional garage door repair company to come and inspect your situation.

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