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In this review:
  1. Cheap Garage Door Openers
  2. Garage Door Opener Reviews
  3. Best Garage Door Openers

Cheap Garage Door Openers Buying Guide

The best products often come with a hefty price tag, but when it comes to garage door openers, thrifty consumers get a well-deserved break: Cheap garage door openers, selling for less than $175, are typically the longest-lasting and most reliable.

Our research shows that available garage door openers are generally dependable.

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Deciding which cheap garage door opener is best for your needs really comes down to the details. There are four types of garage door openers: chain drive, screw drive, belt drive, and torsion drive. Chain-drive units, which have been around the longest, require the least amount of maintenance and tend to be the cheapest. Screw-drive systems, said to be somewhat quieter, cost slightly more. Ultra-quiet belt drive models surpass the cheap garage door opener price point altogether. Torsion-drive openers are the most expensive, and are offered solely under the Wayne-Dalton brand.

Garage door openers are sold under multiple brand names, although there are only three primary manufacturers. Chamberlain makes the Sears Craftsman line, the Chamberlain retail line, and the LiftMaster professional line, which is sold only through distributors. Overhead Door Corp. manufactures both Genie retail models and a line of distributor-only cheap garage door openers under the Overhead Door name; the company acquired the Wayne-Dalton brand in 2009. Linear LLC acquired Allstar Corporation in 2007 and continues to offer the Allstar line of residential garage door openers under the Linear name. Other product lines previously distributed under the Allstar label include Allister, Challenger, MVP, and Pulsar.

Limited retail options exist for the frugal do-it-yourselfer. Local hardware and big-box stores carry a handful of brands, usually Chamberlain, Craftsman, Genie, and Wayne-Dalton. Of these, Craftsman is exclusive to Sears. A company called Linear also offers cheap garage door openers through home improvement chains on a private-label basis, although we weren't able to locate any vendors. Brands such as LiftMaster and Overhead Door, as well as professional versions of retail brands, can be purchased through authorized installers. While the units themselves aren't necessarily more expensive than what you find on the shelves, you're on the hook for the additional expense of professional installation -- usually around $100 per garage door.

Due to the small number of manufacturers, cheap garage door openers vary only slightly from model to model. It may be difficult for the typical buyer to figure out what the differences are, or why they should matter. Why is the Chamberlain HD200D recommended above the Chamberlain HD400D, when they're the same but for different accessories? Only because the HD200D -- Home Depot's version of the Chamberlain PD210D -- represents the better dollar value. The bottom line is that all the cheap garage door openers on our list rank high in user satisfaction, and their similarity frees you up to make a decision based solely on the little things -- like, which comes with a keypad or happens to be on sale.

by Gina Briles (Google+ Profile)

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Filed in: Appliance, Autos, Cars,

Best Cheap Garage Door Openers

Craftsman 53920
Gold Medal

Craftsman 53920

This chain-drive garage door opener features a 1/2 hp motor, doorbell-style garage-mounted controller, one single- button remote, and rolling anti-burglary coding for security purposes. Users find it simple to install and quieter than older models, but wish it came with an additional remote. Sold exclusively through Sears, this cheap garage opener is manufactured by Chamberlain.

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Chamberlain PD210D
Gold Medal

Chamberlain PD210D

A 1/2 hp motor, solid steel chassis and rail, and rolling security coding round out this well-rated chain-drive garage door opener. It meets safety standards and performs according to buyer expectations overall, but some users note that it doesn't come with all the parts required for a new installation and only includes one remote. With only slight modifications, this model is available at Home Depot as the HD200D and at Lowe's as the G248730.

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Good Cheap Garage Door Openers

Genie Powerlift H4000-07
Gold Medal

Genie Powerlift H4000-07

One of the most affordable screw-drive models available, the H4000-07 boasts a 1/2 hp DC motor,rolling security coding, two one-button remotes, and a two-bulb lighting system. Reviewers appreciate the color-coded parts and easy DIY install. While some extol the quiet operation, others don't hear a noise difference between this unit and a traditional chain-drive.

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Chamberlain HD400D
Gold Medal

Chamberlain HD400D

A chain-drive garage door opener with a 1/2 hp motor, this "premium" package includes the two garage door remotes and outdoor keypad that consumers long for in similar models.It comes with the same rolling security coding and motion safety sensors other openers are legally required to have. Users like the dual 200-watt total capacity lighting and have few complaints overall.

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Don't Bother

Craftsman 53985

This 1/2 hp chain drive garage door opener features rolling security code technology, two 100W bulb adjustable lights, two three-button remotes, and a keyless entry pad. Consumers say it's relatively quiet and easy to install, but several claim it has a habit of opening on its own, posing a safety risk.

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