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Belt vs. Chain Garage Door Opener: Which is Better?



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Belt and chain garage door openers are the two most common types of opener, each with pros and cons. There is no universal better choice, and so instead determine which would better suit your home and your needs? In this article, we’ll explore belt vs. chain garage door openers to help you make an informed decision.

Operation: Belt vs. Chain Drive

The key advantage with a belt driven motor is its ability to move your garage door quickly and smoothly. Movement with a chain drive tends to be slower and a bit choppier.

The chain drive opener is sturdier and thus meant for heavier garage doors. If you have a garage door made of a heavier material or a larger-than-standard door, you’ll get more use and muscle out of a chain drive opener. Some belt drive manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty to combat the belt drive’s shorter lifespan.

Noise: Belt vs. Chain Drive

Belt drives tend to be quieter since they use a smooth rubber belt.

Metal chain drive openers are noisy when opening and closing your garage door. These opener types use metal-to-metal contact, which produces an unpleasant sound that even your neighbors can likely hear.

Cost: Belt vs. Chain Drive

Belt drives cost more but typically come with better manufacturer warranties than chain drives do.

Chain drives are less expensive than belt drives are. In fact, they are the least expensive out of all garage door opener types currently on the market.

Maintenance: Belt vs. Chain Drive

Belt drive openers do not need to be lubricated as often as chain drive openers do. You should, however, keep an eye on your belt for signs of damage or wear and tear.

If you own a chain drive opener, you’ll need to lubricate it as part of your regular garage door maintenance routine.

Ease of Installation: Belt vs. Chain Drive

Belt drives weigh less than chain drives do, making them slightly easier to handle during the installation process. Although garage door service professionals are trained to install your garage door opener in an efficient manner, installing a chain drive opener could take longer or cost a bit more.

Regardless of the opener type that you choose, hire a professional to install it to prevent risk of bodily injury or property damage.

Which Should You Buy: Belt or Chain Garage Door Opener?

Your personal preference, along with the type of garage door you own, both play a big part in which garage door opener will work best for you. The chart below will help you make a more informed decision.

Comparison Chart: Belt vs. Chain Garage Door Openers

Belt Chain
Lasts longer X
Better options for warranty X
Sturdier X
Quieter X
Less expensive X
Requires less maintenance X
Easier to install X

FAQs about Belt vs. Chain Garage Door Openers

Which type of opener is suitable for residential use?

Either a belt or chain drive opener is fine to use in your home. Your choice in which to use depends on the factors listed above such as noise preference, budget, and garage door weight. Consult a garage door service professional for advice on which is better suited to your personal situation.

Can belt and chain garage door openers be upgraded to have smart features?

Yes. Belt and chain garage door openers are both compatible with smart garage door openers.

Garage Door Opener Installation Done Right

Still wondering whether you should choose a belt or chain garage door opener? Contact the service professionals at Precision Garage Door Service® and we’ll help you determine which better suits your needs as well as discuss installation. Give us a call at (877) 301-7474 or find the location nearest you to get started.