Thursday, November 17, 2011

It is time for this old Luddite to jump headlong into old technology


Yep, tomorrow I be getting me one of them highfaluting garage door opener thingies.  Out of the 86 houses built in this subdivision, only one buyer (that be me) was too cheap to include it into the construction price of the home.  Here it is 13-years later, and I am going high tech…  Lordy, may wonders never cease.  After all the years of inflation, a new unit installed is costing me only around 1/3 of what the developer wanted. 

Price was not the only reason I delayed getting a garage door opener.  For many years, burglars easily cloned the remote openers; now it is not so easy.  Some of the safety features were unreliable and easily bypassed, sometimes resulting in property damage or injury.  Sometimes the homeowners would drive away without watching their door fully close, only to have a safety switch reverse it to the full open position where it remained until they returned home.  Many folks in this neighborhood quit carrying keys to their house, leaving the connecting door to the garage unlocked, relying solely on the security of the garage door.  Other than the fact that these homes were easy picking for the local scoundrels, the homeowners were locked out of their houses during power failures.  Yeah, over the years a few moseyed over to ask “that survivor guy” if he could help them break into their own homes.  Almost universally, these folks left their second story windows unlocked, so my extension ladder provided the means.  They will wish they had not gotten into the habit of leaving the upper story windows unlocked once the area burglars wise up.

Soon, I will be in this brave new high tech world of push-button garage doors.  The kid who grew- up next-door watching me manually opening my garage door all those years said the neighborhood would just not be the same. 


2 comments:

Ruth said...

Gotta admit its nice not to have to manually fuss with the door in the bad weather.

One thing that we ran across with ours, (and I'm sure its in the instructions if you read them), there's a control on the motor box that controls the amount of power used, we have to turn it up in the winter as the cold/ice make the door harder to open (took us a couple weeks to figure out what adjustment we needed, so I thought I'd pass it along).

Steve said...

Your logic is, as usual, unassailable. The early technology definitely was in the category of "not ready for prime time."

I currently have a weird problem with one of my two garage openers. It won't open using the switch on the wall, but opens fine using the radio-operated opener. It's not the actual switch that's defective; you can tell that it's triggering an action at the opener. I suspect it's a relay in the opener because this failure begins when the temperature drops below about 50 degrees. It works fine in the summer.

So the low-tech option -- the switch on the wall -- doesn't work but the high-tech option -- a radio signal with coded non-clone protection -- works fine. Go figure.