You’re not just automating your home to make it more comfortable, but also more secure. A big part of that is locks and entry sensors for doors and windows. With all that, you can’t neglect your garage door.
Here’s how to find the best Z-Wave garage control and our top picks to make your search that much easier!
Why Automate Your Garage Door?
The garage door is one of the most often used entries to a home, but it is also one of the most neglected when it comes to security. You’d install a smart keypad lock on your front door in a heartbeat, but you’ll just use a button to open your garage door automatically? That’s not smart. Let’s look at some of the ways your automatic garage door opener can be sabotaging your security.
The Dangers of Traditional Automatic Garage Door Openers
When automatic garage door openers first came out, they were the wave of the future. The problem was, their security was virtually nonexistent.
Every device used the same radio signal and code to open, so all a would-be thief had to do was drive up with a remote from the same manufacturer and press it for the door to open.
The next generation had different codes and they also allowed the user to manually change the code when they installed the device. But guess what? Most people are lazy and didn’t bother changing their code at all.
So, we were back to the same scenario where a thief could just use a remote to get the door open and he was inside the house with no fuss.
In addition to that issue, there was another security problem with the second generation of garage door openers: code grabbers. Would-be thieves could use a device that memorized the code, then come back when you weren’t home and easily open the door.
These days, modern automatic garage door openers are pretty high tech, featuring code switching that moves between billions of possible codes, making it pretty hard to hack. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t methods to hack them, however.
There are still code grabbers and other hacking devices out there that allow thieves access to your garage door. Some security experts report that hackers can even use modified children’s toy to send codes and open older models of door openers.
Of course, the chances of this happening are pretty slim, but automating your garage door helps ensure your security. It also adds convenience and connectivity to your life that you didn't know you needed. 🙂
How Z-Wave Garage Control Can Help You
As with all smart home security devices, a wireless garage controller will put you in control of the entry ways to your home. Like a normal door or window sensor, having Z-Wave control of your garage will be able to tell you whether the door is open or shut.
Of course, with the help of a Z-Wave hub, you can do significantly more than that, but the basic function of Z-Wave garage control is knowing the garage's status. Even with just this function, you can get alerts that your door has been opened to let you know if a loved one is home or if your home is being broken into.
As an example, you can use the garage door sensor to trigger a scene for unauthorized entry where all the locks engage automatically, all the lights come on, or alarms sound. You could even trigger a scene for when you or a family member gets home, where your thermostat or lights turn on automatically.
In addition to the sensor function, you can connect your garage to your whole smart home system to allow you remote access. This means that you can open your garage door from your cell phone while you’re turning into your driveway or you could even open the door remotely to allow a repairman or pet sitter entry to your home.
The Best Way to Control a Garage With Z-Wave
Now that you understand how important (and convenient) a smart garage door can be in your smart home, it’s time to choose the right one for your needs. Let’s take a look at a couple options to see which is going to work for your situation.
GoControl/Linear GD00Z-4 Z-Wave Garage Door Opener Remote Controller
- All In One System
- Works With Most Hubs
The GD00Z-4 Garage Door Opener from GoControl is a great device, because it offers a lot of functionality in a small, unobtrusive form factor.
It basically acts as a Z-Wave upgrade to your existing electric garage door opener. This device includes two devices in one. You get a tilt sensor that goes on the garage door to sense when the door is opened and closed. Then the main device attaches to the garage door controller itself to control it.
Like all Z-Wave products, it acts as a repeater for the signal so that you can have a stronger network for other nearby devices like floodlights or outdoor motion sensors.
- Everything you need to install this garage door opener is included, so you purchase this one device and you're good to go.
- GoControl designed this to work with almost all hubs such as Vera, SmartThings, Homeseer, and Nexia.
Based on Amazon, this device will not work with the following garage doors. Make sure you check your model prior to purchasing!
Chamberlain MyQ Models
- WD962KEV, KPEV & MLEV
- HD 930EV & 420EV
- PD752D & KPV
Genie Series III Models
- PowerMax 1500
- TriloG 1200 & 1500
- IntelliG 1000 & 1200
LiftMaster MyQ Models
- 8355, 8360, 8500, 8550, 8557 & 8587
Craftsman AssureLink / MyQ Models
- 3043 & 30437
What Others Say
I've been setting up my home to do more and with this device it sure makes a difference. I had purchased another model thinking it would work with MY Guardian 600SL. But after hours of making it work and I couldn't, I called the manufacturer of the GDO and they said it wouldn't work. Did some searching and purchased the GoControl. Followed one of the previous buyers suggestion about paring before installing it and everything worked first time. My GDO has a second connection for just a push button and that where I made the connection. No cutting or spicing wires. Works great with my Vera Plus too.
This is a great device if you want the all in one solution! If you want something a bit cheaper, option 2 will be for you. You'll need to get your hands dirty, but it will be cheaper.
GoControl Z-Wave Isolated Contact Fixture Module - FS20Z-1 + Ecolink Z-Wave Wireless Tilt Sensor - ECO-TILT-US
- More Difficult to Install
- Requires a Plugin
With these two devices you are virtually creating your own GD00Z-4. The Ecolink Z-Wave Wireless Tilt Sensor is exactly as described: a tilt sensor for a garage door so you know whether it's opened or closed.
In order to fully control your garage door, though, you’d need the GoControl Z-Wave Isolated Contact Fixture Module to open or close your garage door through your Z-Wave system.
Finally, to be able to control your garage door, you'll need a plugin to connect the two. We suggest you check with your hub to ensure there is one created prior to installing this.
- These devices work exactly as intended for a cheaper price than the GD00Z-4.
- Installation can be difficult if you've never wired cords together, but after a quick Youtube search you should be able to figure it out.
What Others Say
Connecting a tilt sensor to the contact fixture was a bit tough to figure out, but after fiddling for an hour I got it and I'm glad I did, because it saved me a lot of money!
If you're willing to splice some wires, integrate two different devices into your system, and set up a plugin, this is the best route to save some money!
What is the Best Z-Wave Garage Door Control?
You could really go with either option. It's more about what you'd prefer to do in your home.
On one hand you have the GoControl/Linear Z-Wave Garage Door Opener, which in addition to offering a full range of garage control functions, it also has great safety features like alarms that sound when the door is about to open or close so that you know to get out of the way.
Many people store valuable goods in their garages like bikes, tools, or unused electronics, and many also don’t lock the door from the garage into the house. That's why using a Z-Wave garage door controller to protect all your valuable items is the smart way to go!
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