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Garage Opener - wired Liftmaster 2 strand - relay hookup


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#1 treo650

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 05:03 AM

My Model Garage opener is:

LiftMaster 3280M

It was just installed by the garage installers literally 4-5 days ago.

I dont want to start hacking up their work, and ruining the system, so I thought I ask first (lol)

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From my understanding, the wired door opener acts simply as a switch, shorting the two wires will open/close the garage

The wired keypad seems more advance than a simple NO switch/button though.
  • There is a green night light on the door opener
  • Unit has a lock mode, and a button for the light

Reading an older thread on this site, (lost the link), its believed that the wired remote control is activated by diodes, can anyone confirm this theory?
  • I have a 4/22 wire near the opener, which two wires are in use for a door magnet, and two wires are free, homerunned to the elk panel

Question is: Is it safe for me to tap into the wired garage door opener's two wires? If its simply a switched N/O pair of wires, there must some voltage powering the night light on the opener. Thoughts?

#2 123

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 10:00 AM

I have a Craftsman opener which is probably just a rebranded Chamberlain (interchangeable accessories ). It has a keypad with an LED status llght, motion detector, lock and light buttons. Shorting the two keypad wires opens/closes the door. When you say "tap into them" what else do you want to do other than operate the door?

#3 soccerob

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:56 PM

I just finished tapping into my door controls for my opener, but I'm not convinced that I did it properly. I have a Craftsman opener, and I ran 2 conductor wire from the elk panel to the rear of the door control device. my door control has a small lcd screen which displays temperature and time, and also has buttons for lock and lights. when i turn the elk output on for 2 seconds, the garage door does begin moving as if I had pressed the button, but the screen goes off as if it has lost power for a few seconds, then comes back on with the appearance of a restart (all numbers and letters are on) and then after a moment goes back to normal and the time is blinking 12:00 as if it lost power.

I'm not entirely sure what I've done wrong, or if I just have to live with the loss of being able to use the clock if i want to be able to control it with the elk.

#4 soccerob

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 07:49 PM

i got my solution from this link: http://cocoontech.co...-control-panel/
not entirely sure what the problem was, some people mentioned that the elk relay might cause the voltage to drop too low or possibly to high, either way causing the screen to power cycle and reboot. i originally ran my 2 wires to the 2 screw terminals on the back of each opener button and had the problem previously mentioned. then, as someone in that other thread suggested, i actually soldered my 2 wires onto the terminals on the back of the board where the buttons are soldered to the board. my opener had a long button along the top. once you remove the plastic button, you can see the board and the 2 little push buttons that the long button is pressing. after taking the opener off the wall, there was a black, plastic, paper-like cover over the back, which i folded forward so i could see the board. then i found one of the spots where those 2 buttons were soldered to the board, and grabbed a resistor and started shorting 2 points at a time until it triggered the door. then i connected my 2 wires to those 2 points and tested. problem solved, put everything back together.

i'm not sure how familiar you are with doing all of this stuff, but i'll tell you i am very in-experienced and i was able to complete this fix for 3 openers in less than an hour. i do have previous experience with soldering, but i'm new to security wiring and all that up until about a month ago when i started completing the installation of my security system about a month ago. i pre-wired the house with some help but hadn't picked a system until just recently. and let me tell you, i am loving the Elk M1. i have probably just scratched the surface of its capabilities, but it's already pretty fun and exciting.

#5 Work2Play

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 12:54 AM

This is a really common topic around here. Basically, any modern garage door opener can work with a standard momentary push-button switch - so you could replace the smart panels/switches that they come with for a normal pushbutton switch and they'd work just fine. But - newer openers are coming smarter with fancier options for the buttons - and it's usually the consumer-grade ones with all the bells and whistles - the equivalent pro models don't bother.

The basic gist is, they'll function very basically with normal pushbutton switches - they'll open and close the door - that's it. With their smart panel, you can turn on/off the light, lock the door, detect motion, etc - those all require some different characteristics of the panel and opener - like being able to detect different resistance levels, etc.

If that smart panel is really important to you, then you need to figure out how to solder directly onto its buttons, or hack a garage door remote in a similar fashion to mimic the pressing of the intended button. Or, if you're like me and could care less about a clock on the panel, then you throw out the smart panel (or ignore the reset action it does) and use normal buttons - and wire your elk onto the "button" terminals... and it'll work just fine. There's no right or wrong, and there's no way you'll hurt your garage door opener with the direct short option.

#6 gatchel

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:04 PM

I posted about soldering to the control tact switches in another post here:

http://cocoontech.co...-control-panel/

(Also linked to above)

I took a pic for those who are interested:

Attached File  IMG_0941_3.jpg   95.63K   209 downloads

The pairs of wire align with the buttons on the front. The red and black are the Open/Close button. There are two tact switches. I only used one.

I'd post a higher resolution image but we are limited to 100k.

Edited by gatchel, 07 May 2012 - 02:08 PM.


#7 video321

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 06:29 PM

I don't have a smart panel and I wired directly to the opener itself (not the keypad). I'm assuming this would still cause the smart panel downstream to reset if I had one?

#8 Kazibole

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 06:41 PM

I don't have a smart panel and I wired directly to the opener itself (not the keypad). I'm assuming this would still cause the smart panel downstream to reset if I had one?


Yes it would.

#9 treo650

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:24 AM

@gatchel

Nice solder joints... I wish I had those skills.

I suck at soldering, and end up with huge gobs :mellow:

#10 Work2Play

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:50 AM

I suck at soldering, and end up with huge gobs :mellow:

Use Flux and a good quality iron! I'm not great by any means, but I'm getting better finally.

Electric irons tend to fluctuate heat rapidly as they cycle on/off (cheap ones) - I get great results with a small butane one that's very consistent.

#11 gatchel

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 07:31 PM

Yes it would.


and does...I tried it.

Use Flux and a good quality iron! I'm not great by any means, but I'm getting better finally.

Electric irons tend to fluctuate heat rapidly as they cycle on/off (cheap ones) - I get great results with a small butane one that's very consistent.


I used the radio shack butane one, go figure!

Edited by gatchel, 08 May 2012 - 07:32 PM.


#12 Work2Play

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 02:41 AM

I used the radio shack butane one, go figure!

I don't know your experience, but I have 2 of those - and I've had two different friends who solder almost daily for their day jobs comment on how much they liked that model after using mine!

#13 gatchel

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 07:41 AM

@gatchel

Nice solder joints... I wish I had those skills.



Thanks...It's really not all that bad to do. You just have to tin and prep both connection points first.


Heat the pin on the circuit board and carefully flow a very small bit of solder on to the pin. Don't heat it for too long as you will burn off all of the flux, you want some flux to stay on the blob of solder. Also, if you heat the PCB for too long you could lift the copper traces off of the PCB, that would be bad.

Get your wire prepped, strip it back a bit. Heat the wire and flow some solder onto the wire once again not heating it too long. When you flow solder on to the wire it will heat up and the insulation will probably shrink back a bit. Make sure that the solder is wicked in to all of the exposed wire.

Now the "trick". Cut the solder prepped wire back until you just have a nub of soldered wire still there.

Now position the PCB so that it is secured in some way. Hold the exposed, tinned wire over the point at which you want to solder it to the tact switch pin using the wire as a spring to apply slight pressure on the pin/wire solder joint. I usually place the wire on the side of the pin to work in a lateral direction as opposed to coming straight down on the pin.

Take the solder iron and heat the wire solder blob while it is against the tact switch pin and the heat will melt the wire blob and transfer to the solder blob melting it also.

Once the solder blobs become one and the wire moves closer to the tact switch pin, remove the heat and lightly blow on the connection the solidify the solder quicker.

That's it.

#14 Neurorad

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 11:47 AM

My 3280 was installed Friday. I got that one to avoid the Smart Panel, and associated issues.

FWIW, I think there is a larger voltage on GDOs that support the Smart Panel; Smart Panel cannot be used with the 3280. Not sure how large, though.

This thread reminded me to cancel the appointment I made with another Installation Company for this afternoon, the company that showed up a week ago without the 3280 that I had requested.




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