Your garage door opener broke. Now you have to decide which type of opener to buy – a screw, chain, or belt drive guide garage door opener. Which one? All have differences and here, we’ll look at each type and the maintenance required which will hopefully help you decide.

So, what is a drive guide anyway?

A drive guide is the track (or T-rail) that guides and shields the chain, screw, or belt while moving the door open and closed. It connects the operator to the trolley, which is connected to the garage door.

A screw drive is historically loud. A screw drive lifting device moves along a threaded steel rod. If there’s a bedroom above your garage door, you can bet whoever sleeps there will get used to the hum of its movement. As far as maintenance goes, the parts are cheap to purchase for repair, but need to be replaced regularly.

Chain drives are also louder than belt drives, but more quiet than screw drives. They typically have less problems than screw drives but more than belt drives. Chain drives include a chain, similar to a bicycle chain, which runs along a rail to operate the electric motor that opens and closes the door. The chain pushes or pulls a trolley (carriage) that connects to a metal bar, called a J-arm, that is affixed to the garage door. This arm moves back and forth to control the door movement.

A belt drive is more quiet and, generally, a bit more expensive than the screw and chain drives. Belt drive openers are similar to chain drives, but a reinforced polyurethane or steel-reinforced rubber belt is what pushes or pulls the trolley. Belt drives can be just as reliable as chain drives, but quieter, with very few issues.

From personal experience, we upgraded from a chain drive to a belt drive opener and we barely hear the garage door open anymore, which is nice.

So, based on how loud or quiet you want your garage door to be, and how much maintenance is required, hopefully, this post will help you decide which one is for you.

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