Are garage door keypads safe? This question is being asked more frequently now as garage door keypads are often included in the package when you purchase a brand new garage door opener. Some homeowners are not convinced whether the convenience of using the keypad is worth the risk of someone gaining access to your house by “hacking” it.
Any garage door company has clients asking whether garage door keypads are safe, and the simple answer is YES. Garage door keypads are entirely safe to use! Most garage door keypads have a four-digit code.
In 4 decimal digits, there are 10,000 possible values, meaning the odds of any one of them coming up randomly is one in 10,000. You would need a really dedicated burglar to stand for days in front of your keypad trying to guess the right combination. And even in that case, it’s most likely that the battery in your keypad would drain sooner than anyone guessing your code successfully.
If you would like to set up a keypad code, choose one that has nothing to do with your year or date of birth. Unfortunately, many homeowners decide to use their year or date of birth as a pin code, as it represents four digits – the same number of digits required by most garage door opener manufacturers. This is not a good practice as it makes it much easier to guess your keypad code. Instead, choose the code that is not common knowledge about you or your family members.
If you hire a garage door repair company to set up a new keypad for you, make sure you’re the one that enters the code, and the tech can’t see what the code is. A garage door technician doesn’t need to know your keypad code to help you set it up. Keep it private at all times, and if you want to give temporary access to your garage, make sure you change the code afterward.
Another good practice for your garage door keypad code is to change it periodically. Having the same PIN code for years can cause visible wear on your buttons, making it easier to guess your combination. Also, using the same buttons for a long time may cause them to fail due to wear and tare, so changing the code will prolong the lifespan of your keypad.
If your garage door opener didn’t come with the keypad, you can easily purchase one online or hire a local garage door company to install one for you. If you hire a professional garage door company, you’re taking guessing work out of the equation, but if you’re buying one by yourself, you need to buy the right one. For all Chamberlain, Liftmaster, Craftsman, Sears garage door openers, you can purchase a 878max Garage Door keypad. It will work just fine with any of the mentioned garage door opener brands. For any other openers such as Linear, Gennie, Marantec etc. you would need to purchase a 387LM Universal Keypad.
With Liftmaster and Chamberlain garage door keypads using Security 2.0, a temporary 4-digit PIN can be set up to allow access to visitors. A temporary code can be programmed for the set number of open/close cycles (up to 255) or for the number of hours. The setup process is straightforward, and we’ll provide a step-by-step guide below.
To set up the number of hours before the code erases, enter the number (up to 255) and hit *. If the setup was successful, you’d hear one click and one blink from the opener.
To set up the number of open/close cycles, enter the required number and press # instead. One blink from the opener will indicate a successful setup.
While more new features are getting added by garage door opener manufacturers, one of the first helpful addons that has been out for decades still has controversial opinions. Many homeowners don’t trust garage door keypads, thinking they are easily hackable. But in reality, there are much more Pros than Cons in using one.
1. Kids playing outside and need to take their bikes or skates from the garage? With a keypad, they always have access to the garage without carrying around the remote or going through the house to get something.
2. Giving access to your visitors is simple, set up a temporary code for convenience.
3. Going out for a walk and don’t want to take the bulky set of keys? No problem, all you need is your keypad PIN code.
Counting on your garage door keypad as the only way to get inside your house can be a disaster. Remember, your keypad operates on a 9v battery, and if the battery dies, you won’t be able to open your garage door, so if you don’t have the keys to unlock the front door, you can be in trouble. Also, if one of your garage door springs breaks, the door will be so heavy that your garage door opener won’t be able to lift it, leaving you stuck outside.
The keypad is not responding and shows no signs of life.
In most cases, that means your 9v battery died, and you need to replace it. You should be able to gain access to your garage again after installing a new battery, as your PIN will be stored even after the battery drains. If it is freezing outside, that can be your issue. A frozen keypad battery is a widespread issue here in Canada during the winter months. Take out the battery and try to warm it up. This trick can let you back home if you’re stuck outside. For more information on how to replace a Liftmaster keypad battery visit this page.
The keypad lights up but doesn’t recognize the PIN.
That means you have a “sticky” or failing button in most cases. After years of usage without changing the code, some keys can fail, leaving you stuck outside. Try to push each button firmly with about a one-second delay in between. This is also a good practice when it’s freezing outside, and the keypad acts up.
The garage door opens up a foot and stops.
Unfortunately, this has nothing to do with your keypad. In this case, one of your springs broke, and the door is too heavy for your opener to lift it.
If you have another way to get inside your house, do that as your first priority, and then call your local garage door repair company to get your springs replaced. However, if your garage door is the only way to get back inside, grab the door while it starts to open up, and keep pushing it all the way, providing additional assistance to your garage door opener.
Calgary Garage Door Fix Inc.
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