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garage door opener keypads - disguise, lock?
Old 01-21-2023, 11:27 AM   #1
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garage door opener keypads - disguise, lock?

I very nearly found myself locked out of the house yesterday due to problem with the front door lock and I realized that I had no other way to get in being the garage door opener was safely locked inside.

My opener is 25 years old and from what I think I have been told is I cannot get one of those remotes you throw on your key chain. But I have always resisted a garage door keypad thinking they are unsafe. Then I thought well can I disguise it somehow, IDK. I have nothing of value to steal but I happen to value ME and don't want to be here if someone breaks in.

Any suggestions what I should look for?
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Old 01-21-2023, 11:33 AM   #2
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We have had a covered keypad for a good 20 years, without problem.
Using your hand to cover the keypad could help with any concerns with someone watching you input the numbers.
We keep our door from the garage to the house locked, so someone couldn't just walk in even if they somehow got the number to open the door.
There are also various hide a key things you can buy to place a key somewhere outside if desired.
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Old 01-21-2023, 11:40 AM   #3
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My opener is 25 years old and from what I think I have been told is I cannot get one of those remotes you throw on your key chain.
At 25 years, I wouldn't expect that opener to last much longer. If you're lucky, you might get another year or two out of it. Might be wise to start looking at replacing it ASAP, before it fails. And if you do replace it, get one that can be controlled with an app on your smartphone. I recently replaced mine (only $200 from Amazon, self-installed) and love how easy it is to use.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:13 PM   #4
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I wondered if I should replace the whole thing. . . but of course if I call a door company they will say so. I will say mine works 100 times better than my friend's brand new one.

Hiding a key won't help as the problem is with the actual door knob/lock which needs replaced I think. It is just that the only other door I have is a sliding glass door (in a locked fenced yard) or the one in the garage. Not worried anyone will see my input the numbers or anything but it is not real tough to guess 4 numbers (which will no doubt show wear). Door from garage to house is always locked but it would be trivial to kick in like most such doors.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:13 PM   #5
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We have two doors. One has the keypad, the other can be controlled by a smartphone.

The smartphone thing is nice, but I disabled it for now since we have the keypad. The key to the keypad is to make sure it is of good quality and security rolling code type. That's the important part of security. Mine is actually "iffy" and I should start thinking about what Sojourner said.

Finally, I have a glass container with a thick plastic top buried in my yard somewhere with the ultimate last chance key. I haven't had to use it yet.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:16 PM   #6
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Been there, done that.
If you do get a keypad and you normally keep your inside door to the garage locked, remember to hide a house key in the garage as well. I once locked myself out and was able to get back into the garage with the keypad BUT the door to the house was locked on the inside so I was stuck in the garage in the freezing cold wearing only a robe, it was very early morning. Luckily I had a phone extension in the garage and finally was able to wake one of my kids to come over and let me in.
Some people in my neighborhood put the keypad on the side of the house instead of the front and paint it the same color as the rest of the wall so its not as obvious.
If you don't want a keypad you could also hide a key in one of these magnetic boxes somewhere in the back yard, maybe behind your a/c unit or in the fuse box next to it or even in a plant pot or under a rock. Just never ever put a key under the mat or above the door, I see videos almost daily recorded on Ring doorbells where a thief shows up at their door in the middle of night and immediately checks there for a key.

https://www.harborfreight.com/magnet...two-62748.html
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:23 PM   #7
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Hmm side of house is good idea also phone.

I had the key with me . . . What I would like to replace honestly is the stupid double cylinder security door I was trying to get in (as well as making an alternate plan). I hate that door but it is very expensive to get another and I am getting laid off. (I did not accept the rebadged job offer at the vendor I posted in about in another thread so budget is a problem).
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:26 PM   #8
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We have an outside garage door keypad which works well for us - we can re-code it if we want and have an app that tells a cellphone when the door opens and closes. Handy when we loan out garage parking to friends while out of state. An AirB&B we stayed in has a keysafe firmly attached to a porch post - even I can defeat the number wheels given a little time and Utube knowledge. They also had an electronic door lock they reset with their phones - pretty handy for an AirB&B.

Reality is if someone wants in your house and doesn't care about noise they can be in real fast - locked door, window, or through the wall. Sorry. Keypad or key safe both work fine and are better than hiding a key under the mat.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:26 PM   #9
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If it could be controlled with a phone it seems like it would be very hackable? IDK.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:28 PM   #10
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It won't cost much to have the lock changed on both doors by a handman if you can't do it yourself. I'm female and I've changed the locks myself a couple of times in the last 30 years. You don't need a new door, just a new lock and there's lot's of youtube videos on how to do it.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:30 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badatmath View Post

My opener is 25 years old and from what I think I have been told is I cannot get one of those remotes you throw on your key chain.
You might want to be sure you have the correct info.

My Genie GD opener is about that age and I had no problem ordering a couple of remotes for it from Amazon last year - less than $20 for the pair. The order page gave clear instructions on how to determine if the remotes match your opener.

I ordered them after giving up on wireless keypads. I've had two, both stopped working within 2-3 years and were never reliable.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:30 PM   #12
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If it could be controlled with a phone it seems like it would be very hackable? IDK.
Anything is hackable, but honestly, these systems are pretty robust.

In my situation, what is not robust is the fact my door has 2x2 glass windows at chest height. If someone wanted in my garage, they just punch the window and pull the release cord. Done. So we have a double lock on the human side garage entry door, but it is basically useless because of the security issue I just pointed out.

Home security is about layers. Hopefully your layers don't align and you slow down the thief enough for them to go elsewhere.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:41 PM   #13
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We have so much exposed glass that I can't imagine that a serious bad guy would bother with the time to hack a garage keypad. Break glass. In.

Also, I can check status, open, and close the garage door via an app on my phone. Liftmaster brand. They offer a camera that can be magnet mounted on the opener so one can see whether it is safe to close the door or not. I found one for just $50, so it is inbound. We'll see how that works.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:46 PM   #14
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One of our favorite features of our door is its programmable so if you forget to close it will automatically close in a time of your choosing. We have it shut after a minute. It also has a lock out so if you want it to stay open when working outside, it won’t kick into the program mode.
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Old 01-21-2023, 12:47 PM   #15
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Spend the money and repair the problem now, it won't hurt so much now as when you have no money coming in.
I hope you start a new post and and let us know if you were able to keep your retiree benefits and the details of your meeting with HR. I'm sure lot's of people will chip in as they did in your original post. If you're unemployed you may qualify for discounts off your gas, electric and cable bills and of course the ACA.
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Old 01-21-2023, 01:02 PM   #16
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We have so much exposed glass that I can't imagine that a serious bad guy would bother with the time to hack a garage keypad. Break glass. In.
My thoughts exactly. I lock my doors and try to not make myself an easy mark by doing something stupid like leaving my garage door open, but beyond that, if they want in, I'm sure they can break in. I don't even bother to lock my door from the garage to the house. If they get in the garage, they'll get in the house. This way at least I won't have to fix a broken door. Of course, when I'm home, I lock all the doors. In that instance, all I'm trying to do is create a situation where a break in will create noise and I'm trying to give myself a bit more time to react.

I don't have the outdoor keypad for my garage but I have an attachment that lets me control the door with my phone. Like this:

https://www.amazon.com/eKyro-Smart-G...s%2C121&sr=8-5
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Old 01-21-2023, 01:05 PM   #17
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A few things:
1. If an intruder wants to break into your home, the garage door/opener is not going to stop them. They're going to go to a door/window, break it just enough to get a hand in, open it, and let themselves in.

2. Many/most garage door opener keypads come with a cover to protect them from the elements. They also blend in well with the garage surroundings. If I wasn't looking for ours, it really doesn't stand out or anything.

3. If you want to keep what you have, you can add a wifi garage door opener and use your phone to open it.

4. You can pay about $400 all-in and get a new garage door opener which is wifi/smart home enabled, full installation included. I was in Home Depot a week or two ago and saw (what appeared to be) a good one for $249 + $149 for installation.
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Old 01-21-2023, 01:20 PM   #18
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Our house was broken into when I was a kid. They kicked in the front door. Not much to stop that.
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Old 01-21-2023, 01:34 PM   #19
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It won't cost much to have the lock changed on both doors by a handman if you can't do it yourself. I'm female and I've changed the locks myself a couple of times in the last 30 years. You don't need a new door, just a new lock and there's lot's of youtube videos on how to do it.
I *REALLY* kind of hate the door due to needing a key to get out but there is no way I know of to fix that becuase having an exposed thumb turn lock is like having no lock at all. Still, I bet you are right and there is something I can do. I just didn't have time to fool with it before w*rk.

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Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
You might want to be sure you have the correct info.

My Genie GD opener is about that age and I had no problem ordering a couple of remotes for it from Amazon last year - less than $20 for the pair. The order page gave clear instructions on how to determine if the remotes match your opener.

I ordered them after giving up on wireless keypads. I've had two, both stopped working within 2-3 years and were never reliable.
I will look it is an "overhead door" brand. The guy who replaced the broken spring told me I couldn't and I had not given it any more thought until yesterday.


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Spend the money and repair the problem now, it won't hurt so much now as when you have no money coming in.
I hope you start a new post and and let us know if you were able to keep your retiree benefits and the details of your meeting with HR. I'm sure lot's of people will chip in as they did in your original post. If you're unemployed you may qualify for discounts off your gas, electric and cable bills and of course the ACA.
Very kind of you to remember. The short answer is HR would only give me minimal information without a PIN which they insisted has to be mailed via USPS.

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A few things:
You can pay about $400 all-in and get a new garage door opener which is wifi/smart home enabled, full installation included. I was in Home Depot a week or two ago and saw (what appeared to be) a good one for $249 + $149 for installation.
Hmm yeah thanks I had not looked yet as I just thought of this.

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Our house was broken into when I was a kid. They kicked in the front door. Not much to stop that.
Iron security door is what I have. Mostly actually for the screen door effect as it is nice enough here to use no a/c sometimes.
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Old 01-21-2023, 01:38 PM   #20
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^^^ the doorframe itself collapsed. The door was completely intact. So if your doorframe is wood, that’s the weak point.
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