Garage Door Entrapment
Garage Door Traps
It’s a trap, with no upside.
When a photo eye system functions improperly it can lead to entrapment. Older garage door systems without photo eye sensors may even pose even a greater risk.
While there is some security in sensors that automatically reverse a garage door operation, when crossed while the door in moving up or down, there are drawbacks to those as well.
Improperly installed, the photo eye sensors can be easily compromised, adding a safety risk to use of the garage door.
The risks of entrapment with a garage door and opener are perhaps best told in this television report, involving a child.
Too few manufacturers have adequately addressed the question of entrapment.
Entrapment under a garage door claims a number of lives every year. It doesn't need too.
Some entrapment cases have been linked to broken garage door springs, which leave the homeowner propping up the door with a 2 x 4 or other item, which invariably can fail under most circumstances.
Martin Garage Door and opener systems, for example, come with a device that helps stop a door from free falling. They also come standard with a heavier-than-industry standard cable. The U.L. Listed system, which operates with or without photo eyes, reverses upon 15 pounds of resistance---helping to safeguard even the most vulnerable of young.
Wayne Dalton has a similar U.L. Listed door and opener system without photo eyes.
In addressing this safety concern, it is best to look beyond just the opener. A garage door and opener system need to work in harmony, to mitigate this potential risk. Safety mechanisms, like the controlled descent device offered by Martin, can function, where an opener might fail.
At minimum, a homeowner should seek to find a U.L. listed/ U.L. 325 compliant garage door opener.