What do I need to get garage door automation working?


(Arun Nayar) #1

I bought the ecolink titl sensor and it tells me correctly when the door is open/not. Pretty cool that I can see it when I am out of the house. But now how do I act on it.

I read about a relay switch like this one;

Is it complicated to setup. Should I hire an electrician to do it? My garage door opener is by Genie probably from 2002/2003


(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #2

Hi there and welcome to the forum.

I am assuming you probably paid around $30.00 for the tilt sensor? And then another $35.00 for the one you posted about? So about $65.00 to $70.00 plus a headache.

What kind of garage door controller do you have installed? It may be comparable with this.

For a few extra bucks and a whole lot less of a hassle, this little beauty is going to do exactly what you want it to do.

No, I’m not a dealer or a salesman. I’ve seen a lot of purple take the route you’re heading down and have had all kinds of headaches.

I personally use this one with a custom device handler and it works flawlessly.

Let me know what you think.


(Arun Nayar) #3

Wait so I need a controller too? I thought I just put the FS20Z-1 connected to the overhead unit and then I can control it from the smartthings app…no?


(Ben W) #4

I agree the splicing can be difficult. I also have a hard time dumping $96 for a garage controller, especially for a garage door opener that is 10+ years old. Most garage door openers have 15-20 year lifespans.

You can purchase a new garage door opener for ~$150 then an internet gateway for another ~$40. Installing a garage door opener is not too bad, took me a couple hours and no high power electricity. Currently rocking the liftmaster with gateway and pretty happy with the smartapp integration into SmartThings. I still use a tllt sensor.

I believe some garage door openers you can upgrade the push button, to support tech like MyQ, then you can get an internet gateway for that. Not sure about Genie, but here is liftmasters option (did a lot of research on Liftmaster)
https://www.liftmaster.com/for-homes/Accessories/Control-Panels/model-888LM


(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #5

There are several different routes you can take with this. Using a tilt sensor asking with the relay works. The problems I’ve seen are the door getting out of sync. But now that I think about it, most of those issues were with people using the Amazon echo.

I went the route of the nutone because it was cheap, had good reviews, comes with its own tilt sensor, and works great with my genie door controller.

It’s only a few bucks more than what you are going to send anyway, so I thought I would offer the option.


(Pizzinini) #6

The “real” garage door opener is definitely a better solution but you can automate your garage door with the two devices. It will still look like 2 devices in SmartThings but it works and is the cheapest option. I have it installed and never had any issue with it for over 2 years now.

Setup is easy. Just follow instruction for the FS20Z-1 and connect it to power (you will probably need to buy a power cord and a electric surface mount box, total ~$10) and to the existing garage door opener (parallel to your remote/switch) and pair with SmartThings. Then change the device type to “Z-wave virtual momentary contact switch”… Done!

There are some more elegant ways of implementing the 2 devices (search the forum for updated device types/ apps) but this has been working fine for me. I usually don’t use the SmartThings app to open/close the garage door. So having two devices instead of one does not matter to me. I normally close/open the door as part of a routine, a button/widget on iOS Today, or via Homebridge/Homekit/Siri.


(Arun Nayar) #7

what am I looking for. I searched electric surface mount box at Home Depot and it brings a lot of stuff but not sure what I need. Also where my opener is mounted there are 2 plug points, one used the opener and I guess I can use the second one for the relay switch?


(Tintin) #8

While it is not yet available - this KS item looks very promising and hopefully a very simple install, smart app already exists and could be reliable given the laser sensor and direct install - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/softcomplex/garadget-garage-door-futurizer
Time will tell - but it offers some good possibilities for future extension too. Just an alternative to consider


(Pizzinini) #9

Unless you have an empty wall box with power for the relay, you probably need items like this for propper installation:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/CE-TECH-1-Gang-Surface-Mount-Box-5302/204265446

You will also need low voltage wires to connect the relay to the garage door opener.


(Arun Nayar) #10

@pizzinini Thank you for all your help. I got it working. I am not going for any automation right now just have the sensor to alert me if it is open and then have the ability to close it remotely.