Known as the Door Operator Guru, Roy Bardowell is one of the most respected and knowledgeable men in the garage door and operator industry.  His special passion for residential garage door, commercial door and gate operators leaves an impression on everyone he meets.  Roy's training sessions at IDA Expos are always the one of the most widely attended sessions. He has been recognized by IDEA with the "Commitment to Excellence Award" and is an IDEA Certified Door Dealer Consultant.  Roy is a member of the tech service team at Micanan Systems. He was Operations Manager at Guardian until 2012.  We hope that you find Roy's articles informative and entertaining.  Feel free to leave your comments for Roy.


ARTICLES

The Universal Scam

by Roy Bardowell, CDDC

The universal scam is not what you think. Maybe a better title would be the Universal Lie or the Universal falsehood.

The Universal scam is all about how some go about marketing their products and the shortcomings associated with the products in question. So, who am I talking about you ask. I’m not going to name names and this excerpt is really just a warning. For many years there are a few companies who market their products as universal. You can find these products in the door operator section at Home Depot, Lowes or other DIY store.

Every garage door operator manufacturer supplies one or two remote controls to open or close the garage door from the car. The signal is based on radio frequency (RF) and will be in the range of 277-412MHz. The manufacturer will also produce a keypad unit that will work on the same frequency and the remotes. Homeowners may purchase as many remotes as necessary to accommodate all the family members and this is where the scam starts. Some door operators are made to be a DIY installation whereas you can purchase extra remotes at the same store where you bought the operator, however some more complex door operators can only be found at a garage door installation companies and if you need more remotes or a keypad you must purchase them through the installation company.

Every garage door operator manufacturer supplies one or two remote controls to open or close the garage door from the car. The signal is based on radio frequency (RF) and will be in the range of 277-412MHz. The manufacturer will also produce a keypad unit that will work on the same frequency and the remotes. Homeowners may purchase as many remotes as necessary to accommodate all the family members and this is where the scam starts. Some door operators are made to be a DIY installation whereas you can purchase extra remotes at the same store where you bought the operator, however some more complex door operators can only be found at a garage door installation companies and if you need more remotes or a keypad you must purchase them through the installation company.

There is no doubt buying remotes from a professional door dealer will be slightly higher in price than one off the shelf at a store. This is the root of the scam. When people don’t like a price they will seek out the item elsewhere. Some companies have this figured out and market garage door items like Universal garage door remotes, keypads or others.

The word “Universal” should throw up a red flag immediately. I guess if the producer was more honest they would say opens some doors, but then I imagine they wouldn’t sell many.

There are 25 brands of door operators in the USA and everyone produces an operator on a specific frequency that no other company will use. For there to be a real universal remote the producer would have to research every frequency used and include all the frequencies in their remote control. If it could be done the remote would cost a small fortune.

Door Operator companies spend many hours researching, developing, and producing remotes that will connect and open your door every-time you command it. To build a good dependable wireless remote or keypad is not an easy task and downright expensive. For someone to take a $1 plastic box and put a button on it and call it a universal remote is despicable. I spent years on the customer support line for many door operator manufacturers and have fielded 100’s of calls from irate homeowners who thought because the item was labeled as Universal it should work on my product. They typically tried to blame us for a product we never saw. Well I’m here to say you were scammed and all I can say is call the operator manufacturer and purchase the right stuff. I imagine the falsehood will continue until the scam runs its course or until everyone is aware of it. How to avoid being a victim of this scam? Anytime you are having a door operator installed insist on factory equipment only. If you don’t like the price from the installer; suck it up and buy them anyway, then the installer will program the remotes for you and save you a headache.

The cost of purchasing a false universal device that may not work is more costly and will give you a headache you don’t need. You may ask, how can a company get away with such a dishonest ploy? It’s simple, DEMAND!

The companies who market universal items such as universal garage door remotes, keypads or door hinges feel they are doing the industry a favor. If their universal remote works on two different openers their conscience is clear and they feel fine printing “Universal” on their products. Could a universal remote open two different door openers? Yes, but there is no doubt it will NOT open all 25 brands and models. Play it safe, GO with ONLY original factory accessories. It’s your best choice!

Roy Bardowell, CDDC, is a member of the tech support team at Micanan Systems. He served as Operations Manager at Guardian Access & Door Hardware until 2012. He has been in the door and operator industry since 1973 and is known as one of the industry’s most experienced operator technicians and trainers. Roy received the IDEA Commitment to Excellence award in 2008 and IDA’s Jerry R. Reynolds Volunteer Service Award in 2017. Contact him at roythedoorman@gmail.com

25 Comments
  1. Bob's picture
    Oct 24, 2017

    I have a Clicker KLIK2U.... Does it work with a Guardian? If so what is the id code for Guardian

  1. Brian's picture
    Oct 26, 2017

    A Clicker is not Universal.  It will not  work with a Guardian garage door opener.  Google "Guaridan GDOR2B" for sources that will sell a compaible remote.  If more help is needed please call 1-424-272-6998.

  1. Anonymous's picture
    Nov 15, 2017

    No I don't believe Clicker included the Guardian frequency in their product.

  1. Elmore Haney's picture
    Nov 08, 2017

    We have a 2011 Ford Escape with an Interior System for operation of Exterior Gates, Garage Door and House Security Lights. I am unable to Program the Guardian 630SL with the vehicle equipped system which worked with the other Garage Door Opener our home had. Is there a reason I am unable to set up this Opener purchased from your company using the "Guardian Remote Clicker" the only answer to this inconvenience ?

  1. Brian's picture
    Nov 16, 2017

    Elmore,

    There are two systems auto manufactures supply with their cars, HomeLink, made by Gentex and Car2U made by Leer Corp.  Guardian operators are compatible with HomeLink, but not Car2U.  Please check your car's owner's manual to see what system is used in your vehicle.  There should also be a phone number in the manual to call for help in programming either of the two systems.

     

  1. Scott Caryer's picture
    Nov 11, 2017

    I have two guardian remote controls that do NOT open our Guardian garage door opener. I have replaced the batteries in both units, and they still do not work. However, the external wall mounted wireless garage door opener works, as well as the embedded garage door openers in our Honda cars. So what is not working are the two guardian remotes. Please provide some direction to troublehoot and solve this issue.

    Thanks in advance...Scott

  1. Brian's picture
    Nov 16, 2017

    Hi Scott,

    Have the remote controls always worked with the garage door opener or is the issue something recent?  The fact that the HomeLink system in your car is working indicates that the radio receiver in the opener is working.  What are the model numbers of your opener and remote controls?  To talk directly to a tech who can help to troubleshoot, call 1-424-272-6998.

  1. Alayne's picture
    Nov 30, 2017

    Is there a way to put the lights on the opener in "motion" mode, rather than just coming on by pushing the light button or opening the garage door?

  1. Brian's picture
    Dec 04, 2017

    Dear Alayne,

    Some gargae door openers have a special control console that can provide this function.  Your Guardian opener is not adaptable to this console,  A less expensive alternative would be to replace the light switch in your carage with a passive infrared motion sensor wall switch.  This switch will recognize a presence in the room/garage and turn on/off lights accordingly.  A garage door opener system works with a set timer, so lights can remain on even after the person has left the garage.  The switch could be purchaed at any hardware of store or home center.

     

  1. Brian Cuyno's picture
    Jan 13, 2018

    Hi,

    I recently received a new unit (628) from Diego, who works at your Los Angeles office. It is now installed but I continue to have problems.

    When trying to program the up and down limits I continue to have issues, I will try to program the up limit and it will stop, which will require me to continue the process until the door is up. Then when I try to program the down sequence the door will start to go down then beep once, then stop. I go through the sequence again and the programing sequencing process does not go through smoothly. I keep pressing the limit twice for the down option, I will work for a second then it won't.

    Right now my wife and I are having to manually open and close the door.

    Brian

  1. Brian's picture
    Jan 15, 2018

    Brian,

    Pages 16-18 in the 628 owner's manual will provide a step by step process, if more help is needed, please contact our tech service help line (424-272-6998) and a tech will walk you through the limit setting process.  

    Brian

  1. Steve's picture
    Jan 30, 2018

    I recently posted complaining about the motor. I found a number for Guardian technical services online and as a last effort I called them. Technical services was great and helped me fix the problem fairly easily with directions over the phone. I’m impressed with corporate but still disappointed in the local installer as since the day they installed the opener they come across as more interested in generating charges than doing what’s right for the customer.

    Thanks to Technical Services!

  1. Shirley Rankin's picture
    Feb 05, 2018

    I'm in New Zealand. If I can't source this for my Guardian 21230DL, I'll have to discard an entire garage door opener which works perfectly well just because it can't receive the signal from the remote.

    I looked for an internet sale on your website but couldn't find it.

    Considering that it will cost $800 to replace the whole door opener unnecessarily, I would really appreciate your help.

    Regards
    Shirley

  1. Brian's picture
    Feb 11, 2018

    Guardian products can be found in New Zealand at Windsor Doors

    Windsor Doors Auckland

    347 Great South Rd.

    Takanini 2112, Auckland

    P: 09 298 8655

    F: 09 298 0626

     

    Windsor Doors Christchurch

    Doric Way, Waterloo Business Park

    Christchurch

    P: 03 343 3276

    F: 03 343 3761

    sales@windsorsouth.co.nz

     

    Windsor Doors Wellington

    (Incorporating Castle Doors Ltd)

    95 Nelson Street,

    Petone, Wellington

    P: 0800 020 785

    F: 04 589 3986

    wellington@windsordoors.co.nz

    Windsor Doors Hamilton Unit 8

    170 Maui Street

    Te Rapa, Hamilton

    P: 07 850 6140

    F: 09 298 0626

  1. Marty Marias's picture
    Mar 01, 2018

    Roy, I have six two button remotes, the black rubber inserts fall out and I have to use a small object to activate the opener. Would it be possible to send me five or six replacements. I would happily pay for them.
    Marty Marias
    310 328-6278
    201 Ruth Ave.
    Venice CA 90291
    martymarias@yahoo.com

  1. Jamie's picture
    Mar 24, 2018

    Hello,

    My garage door motor is beeping every 15 minutes. Is this due to my remote battery being low or the motor being low? I'm having trouble locating a batter on the actual motor.

  1. Brian's picture
    Mar 25, 2018

    Hi Jamie,

    A good answer can't be provided without more information.  Please call 1-424-272-6998 and a tech will be able to assess the issue and provide a solution. 

  1. smith's picture
    May 01, 2018

    I read the comment on how a clicker is not universal and will not work on guardian garage doors. Specifically could you please suggest one that will work? Your tech phone number is useless! I've left two messages and not received a return call yet and its been three days. No one ever answers either.

  1. Brian's picture
    May 06, 2018

    Any Guardian remote control listed on the remote controls page on this website will work with any Guardian operator.

    If there are issues reaching technical service please feel free to contact a regional office (also listed on the website).

  1. Sherri's picture
    May 13, 2018

    My garage door will not work with the wall panel unit. The remote control units work and the keypad outside works. Any suggestions?

  1. Brian's picture
    May 14, 2018

    Hi Sherri,

    Is the LED back light on the panel glowing?  Check the wiring first.  The plug on the end of the wire leading from the control banel should be securely plugged into the "wall box" recepticle on the motor head.  Check for any wire shorts due to staples holding the wire to the wall.  Check the wire terminal connections on the back of the panel.. If more help is needed please call 1-424-272-6998.

  1. Robert Johnson's picture
    Jun 29, 2018

    The drive belt on my 3/4 HP Guardian executive series 600SL has broken. How do I get it fixed? I called your 800-989-8769 phone number and the phone company said the number is disconnected so no one answered

  1. Brian's picture
    Jul 04, 2018

    Robert,

    Please call Guardian Tech Service at 424-272-6998 for help.  

  1. Jada's picture
    Aug 12, 2018

    Lost power and opened the garage manually, power came back on the door opened almost completely and stopped. Beeping 20 times checked no lights on. Metered the wires for power, 21.08 tried aligning can't get any LEDs on?

  1. Brian's picture
    Aug 13, 2018

    Dear Jada,

    20 beeps signified a photo-eye misalignment or faliure.  Please call Guardian Tech Service at 1-424-272-6998 to resolve.  Thanks

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