How to Automate Doors with an Automatic Door Opener for Home

An automatic door opener for the home can be such a convenient help. If you are at one end of your house and need a door closed to your area, simply close them using your smartphone or voice assistant.

You can also connect your automatic door opener to a motion sensor to automate the opening and closing of your doors when walking toward it.

Are they easy to install?

Luckily most of these types of products are designed as a DIY type system.

You will receive a packaged kit. It should contain most of the items needed to install the unit.

It’s as simple as mounting the control mechanism with screws into the wall or door and the arm end to the other unmounted surface.

One of the things I’d like to point out when wanting a DIY automatic door opener for home is the mounting strength.

Make sure that the material that the door is constructed from can withstand the mounting screws and the force that the opener exerts on them.

If you have any concern that it may not be strong enough for the mounting screws, you may want to consider other options.

One such option could include bolting the unit or arm bracket onto it.

Of course, this is not aesthetically appealing but will provide for a solid enough mounting strength.

There are many more options than this, like some well finished mounting plates, for example.

Here is an example of how one of these units are installed for a common swing door:

Olide Automatic swing door opener SW100 install video

How does it make my life easier?

There are a few ways adding automation can make things a little more convenient for you.

  • Easy door control
  • Carrying items while walking
  • Benefits for the disabled

Having them open automatically using a sensor or timer means that you don’t have to put things down that you carrying to open a door.

Closing a door that allows you to hear better on your phone call while sitting in your home office, for example, can be helpful.

How much do they cost?

There are varying prices involved with these products, depending on your requirements and feature expectations.

A Skylink DM-50, for example, costs about $200. This unit can operate most common home swing doors.

An Olide SW100 is priced around $530. This unit can be used with doors weighing up to 264 lbs.

For outdoor swing gates, a product made by Ghost Controls, known as the TDS2 model, will set you back $700.

What types can I automate?

If you select the appropriate product, most types can be automated. If your door slides or swings, it can be done.

There are even models that are designed for your outdoor swing gates.

There are many makes and models of automatic openers. So it’s important that you take your time researching the correct product for your needs.

If you are planning to automate your main entry to your home, purchasing a locking accessory is a must, so everything can operate in unison.

What are the common features to expect?

Here is a short list of common features:

  • Remote keychain: Most units have an individual wireless keychain controller supplied with it.
  • Sensor connectivity: You can hook up a motion sensor to automatically have your door open and close when walking toward it.
  • Timer control: Set your it to be closed or opened at any times you want.
  • Remote control: Some units will supply a remote that you can use to control it. The other form of controlling the door remotely is by using your smartphone. Although this feature is not as common as I’d like, I’m hoping this will be changing in the not too distant future.
  • Easy integration: Most of the newest automatic door controllers allow you to connect it up to other smart control devices. One example would be a voice activated home assistant.
  • Battery backup: Some models actually include a battery backup, so it can still operate even when the power goes out.
  • Accessories: There are accessories that are provided with some manufacturers of automatic door openers. Examples include magnetic locks, motion sensors, extra key-chain remotes, and wall mounted buttons or keypad code access.

Naturally, these units can offer a variety of different features that vary between make and model.

Where does it get power from?

Most units require power mains power for it to operate. This is mainly to keep the units size down as batteries are not quite compact enough yet to power such a device for long enough between recharge cycles.

It’s not too difficult to run the unit’s cable to the nearest power point. You can fix the power cable to the wall or frame in a few different ways. I like to run the cable against the frame or along the top of the skirting. 

Cable clips allow you to do this very well. You can get adhesive mounting clips or clips that mount using nails or screws.

Cable Clip for Single Coax – Nail-In Fasteners – 100 Pack – #263 – #266

If you have more than one cable that you want to run, using a decorative trunking cover is another way to keep cables out of sight.

Wiremold: How to Install the CordMate II Cord Channel

Here is a more unique product that does an awesome job of hiding your cables:

Crown Molding Wire and Cable Management

Conclusion

These products are abundant, however, they aren’t very commonly promoted comparing to other automation products.

This seems like a bit of a shame as I can see how this kind of product can add extra convenience just like any other automation device.

An automatic door opener can offer increasingly useful features and I’m hoping they will become more popular. Hopefully eventually resulting in improved pricing for everyone.

I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t mind all of them in my home to be automated.

I’m sure these products could also present more options when it comes to security in our homes.

It seems to me that there could be more ways we could put these units to good use, wouldn’t you agree?