What is a Universal Garage Door Remote?

Ken Black
Ken Black
Like a universal TV remote, universal garage door remotes can be programmed to work with any electronic garage door system.
Like a universal TV remote, universal garage door remotes can be programmed to work with any electronic garage door system.

A universal garage door remote is a device that can be programmed to work with a variety of garage door openers. They are often popular as replacement units for those who need another remote control. Often, finding original remote controls to work with specific garage door openers can be a time-consuming process.

All garage door openers work in a similar way. The automatic garage door is connected to a motor, which then pulls the door open or lets it down using a chain connected to the door. The door is also on a track. The remote simply gives the command to raise or lower the door.

If a remote is lost or becomes damaged, the quickest way to replace it is often the universal garage door remote. This remote can be programmed to work with a number of different garage doors. In most cases, a universal remote should work with the most popular brands of openers on the market. The packaging will often provide information as to which brands and models it will work with.

However, there may also be cases when a universal garage door remote will not work with a certain door. This may be because the opener is an off brand that is not supported by the remote, or it may be because the security features associated with the opener do not allow for it to be used. When this type of remote is not compatible, the only option is usually to get another one from the manufacturer.

The garage door remote is usually programmed using one of two methods, or a combination of both. The first method is to use the switches inside the remote and find the one that works with your particular brand. The garage door opener may also be able to program the universal garage door remote through the push of a button on the motor housing. Detailed instructions are usually included in the remote opener packaging that detail how to accomplish the task with certain popular openers.

Like most remote control openers, a universal one can come with many different options. They have from one to three buttons. These buttons can be used to control multiple doors or doors and automatic gates. The power source for the remotes is a battery. Some are standard 9-volt batteries. Others may be run on other types of batteries, such as those commonly associated with watches and other such electronics.

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Discussion Comments


I used to use a universal garage door remote more often than I do now. I have a car where I can program my garage door into a panel on my visor. This is wonderful because I never have to worry about losing a remote.

I still keep the universal remote around to have as a spare. There have been times when this has come in really handy. If I have company staying with me, I always let them use the universal remote so they can park inside the garage as well.

I hardly ever go in my house through the front door, but always enter in through the garage. If my next car doesn't have this same programming capability, I will go back to using the universal remote again.


I would be frustrated without our universal garage door remote. This came with two remotes and we keep one in the car and one in the motorcycle.

Before using the universal remote I would have to climb off the back of the motorcycle every time to open the garage door. Now we can just pull up to the garage and I don't have to get off the motorcycle.

We have three sections on our garage and each one of them have a different door. It is nice because you can choose which door you want to open or close without all of them going up at the same time.


I think universal garage door remotes are great, especially if you have a really old garage opener that no longer manufactures remotes. That was the case with me and when my remote control broke, I thought I would have to get a whole new opener for the garage.

I saw the universal garage door opener remote at the store, it was really affordable and decided to try it out. Even if it didn't work, I wouldn't feel like I wasted money. I just followed the instructions on it and quite amazingly, it worked!

I just kept pressing on the button and eventually the garage door moved! What's more is that I have two garage doors and it worked for both of them. The only minus I can think of is that the range is kind of short. You do have to be pretty close to the garage for it to work, but I really don't mind. I saved so much money thanks to this remote.


@ysmina-- I don't know why your neighbor had trouble programming it, it's very easy! I did it all by myself and it only took a minute.

What you need to do is take your universal garage door remote to the garage door opener. Press down on the learn button on the opener for twenty or twenty five seconds to clear the current programming. Then, press on the universal remote's button and press the learn button on the opener again. You should see the remote blink for a few seconds which means it's programmed.

So easy! I'm sure you'll have no trouble doing it if you follow the directions. By the way, which brand are you thinking of getting? There are several major brands like Skylink, Liftmaster and Chamberlain universal garage door remote. They all work equally well. I'm currently using Chamberlain and I'm happy with it.


We didn't lose our garage door remote, but we need a second one now for my wife to use and keep in her car.

I've been doing some research and I found out that the universal garage door remote control is compatible with my garage door. What I'm worried about though is the programming.

I was talking to my neighbor about this the other day and he said that he bought a universal garage remote but wasn't able to program it despite using the manual. Are these garage remotes really that hard to program? Do I need some professional help to get it to work with my garage door?

I was hoping that I can just buy the remote and start using it right away but it seems that it's not going to be so easy.

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    • Like a universal TV remote, universal garage door remotes can be programmed to work with any electronic garage door system.
      Like a universal TV remote, universal garage door remotes can be programmed to work with any electronic garage door system.