How to use existing remote for garage and gate control?


(Ryan Little) #1

Hello,

So I am new to ST and I see why folks may want to use a wired version for a garage door opener but it seems more complex (still simple tho) then it should be.

I would like a recommendation on 2 options. Is there a device, like a universal garage door opener that exists that would work with ST. To clarify something that could learn and code and send it lets say 200ft? As a secondary option, what is the best way to use the existing remote that already has 500ft of range to work with ST? Example a switch hardwired into the remote and would activate it, pretty crude method but simple I would imagine.

Thanks,
Ryan a ST newbie


(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #2

This is the best value “official” option I think…

Meanwhile… Yes, you can “hot wire” your existing wall switch or maybe the existing remote with various ZigBee, Z-Wave, or ThingShield relays, but you still need a contact or Tilt sensor, and are possibly violating building safety codes.


#3

Unfortunately, Neither of these methods Will work with SmartThings.

Smartthings supports two primary wireless protocols: Zwave and zigbee (using the home automation profile). You can also access cloud to cloud with many web services, including IFTTT. And that’s pretty much it.

Most garage door openers use 433 MHz or maybe 334. SmartThings does not have an antenna for either of these, so it can neither send nor hear these transmissions.

For garage doors, most people use the zwave garage door opener which is on the official “works with smartthings” list. It’s from Linear but is marketed under a number of different brands including Nutone and go control. It typically costs about $85 and will work with most garage doors.

A few people have hacked some kind of bridge between smartthings and 433 MHz device, but it will require adding at least one and usually two additional devices and building your own transmitter, so most people don’t do it. If you are interested in that level of maker project, first find out what frequency your current remote is using and then search the forums for that frequency to find people working on bridge projects.


(Ryan Little) #4

Hello,

Just on my cell so keeping my reply short but I really appreciate your information. I finally came across something that does would I THINK I want, except I would take advantage of the range of the fob.

I am really interested in this solution as I could also use it for my solar powered gate that’s about 200 feet from the house.

Thanks


#5

The device in That video is the same garage door controller that I mentioned which is on the official SmartThings compatibility list. It works fine, but it won’t work with your existing garage remote. You’ll either control it from your phone or with a new smart things – compatible device like the $20 Securifi fob. ( The fob is tiny, fits easily on a keychain.) Again, you use the Securifi fob in addition to the linear garage door controller, The Securifi fob by itself can’t control your garage door.

( Vera is a hub competitor to SmartThings. Both are certified zwave controllers and so many of the same devices work with both. The garage door controller, again, is made by Nortek and marketed under many different brand names including go control, Linear, and Nutone. They will all have a model number of GD00Z)


(Ryan Little) #6

You are right sorry i have multiple door openers so i will use one for this purpose.

thanks


(Eric Brown) #7

Controlling a gate 200 feet from the house may be too far for the Z-Wave network. You would likely need a z-wave repeater half way in between. Newer Z-wave Plus devices may have a slightly better range, but even with clear line of sight that becomes a long distance for a low power wireless network.

SmartThings previously had a way of combining a open/close/tilt sensor with a relay switch to create a virtual garage door opener with a SmartApp.

Now you have to work a little harder to recreate the same thing using the developer api. You will need to change the device types (the relay as a momentary switch, and open/close as a garage door), but it can be done. Modifying the existing opener with a Z-wave controlled relay would act like a second switch which would allow you to control the door through SmartThings or with your existing remote.

You can also use your phone as a presence sensor, and automate the gate so that as you get within a certain range of your home the gate and garage door will open; no physical controller needed. Or you could get a z-wave remote from Aeon Labs and set one of the buttons to open or close the gate if you really don’t want to use the app to open/close things. I have used a SmartThings presence sensor in my car to trigger my garage door, but this works on Zigbee, and would require your Zigbee AND Z-Wave networks to extend to the gate. Alternatively the presence sensor in the car could be used to trigger the garage door while your phone triggered the gate.