My Garage door opens a little then stops -{Here is Why}

An image showing the garage door that opens a little then stops

The inconveniences that come with a garage door that does not open all the way can be time-consuming and, at the same time, annoying. For instance, when you are running late and have much on your plate in your garage, the least you expect is hindrance to the access of the garage due to door failures to save on the lost time.

When your garage door opens a little then stops, you do not need to fret or immediately call a professional. The panic can only cost you more money. You will lose both money and time on something you could effortlessly correct. Instead, you need to try certain troubleshooting tips to locate and diagnose the potential issues with your garage door.

Read on to learn some of the problems why your garage door opens a little and then stops.

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Garage Door Opens a Little then StopsProblems and Troubleshooting Tips

When your garage door opens a little then stops, the issue may be defective or broken springs, an obstruction on the doorway, a faulty logic control board, and limit or lock switch problems.

The various problems and the potential troubleshooting tips are as follows;

Obstruction in Doorway

The first culprit to a garage door that won’t open all the way is an obstruction in the doorway. The garage doors are fitted with sensors on either side of the door. The sensors (transmitter and receiver) communicate through an infrared beam. For the garage door to operate effectively, these sensors must see each other.

However, suppose there is an obstruction in the doorway in the form of an object, pet, or a small child, the sensors fail to communicate as the infrared beam from the transmitter sensor is obstructed from reaching the receiver sensor. The garage door sensor will flash red, and the garage door will not close but instead reverses its direction to avoid crashing on the object through a reverse mechanism.

In addition, check on the lenses if you realize there is no object in the doorway. Dirt or dust in the lenses prevents the closing of the garage doors. You should wipe out the dust in the lenses using a damp cloth. Always ensure that you clean the lenses to avoid the accumulation of dirt or the development of spider webs.

Faulty Logic Control Board

You are probably using a remote to control the opening and closing of your garage door. A logic board receives and responds to the signals from your remote and then instructs the door to open or close. That means a faulty logic board cannot receive or respond to the signals from the remote.

The surest diagnosis for a garage door that does not open or closes due to the logic board problems is replacing it by buying a new one. Alternatively, the device may only require a fresh restart in some instances. Try rebooting it and testing if it works.

Misaligned Door Track

The garage door system works through a mechanism where the springs are activated to manage the tension while the cables physically lift or lower it. However, this operation requires that the door stays in the door line. The door track guides the door to stay in line when going up or down. The track also ensures that your door is straight and even on both sides to facilitate easy up and down movement.

If the track is misaligned, the door can fail to open completely or close. The door’s movement is reduced and can completely stop halfway in some cases. If you continue forcing the door to operate on misaligned tracks, it can bend on one side and cause much more harm, wear and tear that might require you to replace the whole garage door system.

Thus, if you realize the problem is with your door track, you need to call a service professional quickly before the problem gets out of hand.

Broken Springs

You can determine if the problem with your garage door is broken or defective springs by trying to lift it after disconnecting the cord from the opener manually.  If the door is heavy to lift, the spring would be the culprit within the opening mechanism.

However, in the case of a broken spring, always consult with a professional to help you fix the problem. You may not have the needed knowledge to fix the garage door springs as they will require technical knowledge and can also be dangerous and pose injuries and even death.

Disrupted Power Supply

The disruption in the power supply or a break in the circuit is another reason the garage door won’t fully open. Even though you can be sure that your opener is plugged in, when the door opens a little then stops,  first check if there is any disruption to the power supply.

The garage door openers always stop when issues such as tripping a circuit breaker or if a fuse blows while the garage is halfway open. Such issues will make your garage door stop while it is opening.

You should check on the sources of power and the ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) to guarantee the outlet is functional.

Travel or Switch Limit Adjustment

A garage door that does not travel halfway might need limit or force limit adjustment. Try to manually close or open the garage door and determine if anything is binding it. If nothing is binding, try a travel or force limit adjustment.

The travel limit controls how your garage door opens or closes when operating normally. Conversely, the force limit controls the push needed to close the door completely.

The exciting aspect of this problem is that you can execute the diagnosis yourself.  Check the manuals that come with your garage door to make the adjustments.  Again, for most garage doors, you will need to turn the screws on the side or push the colored buttons to make the adjustments.

Snapped Cables

The broken cables can be another culprit to a garage door that only opens a little and stop. The cables align with the extension springs and enable the garage door’s up and down movement.

Like springs, cables form a crucial part of the garage door. In the absence of the cables or snapped cables, your garage door is unsupported and can fall back to the ground in an up and down movement.

Besides, the cables hold the garage door against slamming onto the ground once the springs are snapped. This implies that the cables also offer security and protection to the objects, poets, automobiles, or a child from getting crushed by the door’s weight when the springs fail.

Sensitivity Out of Alignment

Your garage door will not be fully open if you set your sensitivity too high or low. The issue is common with the newly installed garage doors.

Thus, ensure you have adequately read the manufacturer’s manual to set sensitivity during the installation process effectively. When your garage door fails to stop when it has only opened a few inches, check the directives given by the manufacturers and reset the sensitivity.

While resetting the sensitivity, also ensure the limit and force switch are to the correct levels. If not, adjust them to the required levels. This should solve your problem.

The video below show how to diagnose a LiftMaster garage door that won’t fully open

Why Does My Garage Door Keep Opening After Closing?

Your garage door can open after closing when its safety sensors are blocked or dirty, wrong limit switch settings, or a faulty logic board.

Your garage door has two safety sensors that pass the horizontal beam to control opening and closing. The sensors communicate through the beams, and your garage door will only fully close when there is no interference with the emitted beams from the transmitter to the receiver sensor.

If there is an obstruction on the door’s path, the door will reverse its direction and opens if it is closing. Also, dirty lenses of the sensors can cause a garage door not to close. You need to clean the lenses and ensure no object is on the door’s path.

How to Replace Garage Door Opener

Step 1: Switch off the Power.

The first step to replacing your garage door opener is turning off the power to the garage at the circuit panel. The action is crucial to prevent the associated electrical shock when the door is powered.

Step 2: Unplug the existing garage door Opener.

First, locate the old brackets holding the opener to the ceiling. Unplug the opener and then gently lower it down. You can use an adjustable wrench or an open-ended screw to loosen and remove the brackets on the door and above the door.

Step 3: Install the new Brackets

The step involves installing the new brackets that come with your new opener over the garage door. You may use a screw gun for the installation. Then, slide the track into the bracket and secure it with the wrench.

Step 4: Screw the New Motor

After installing the new brackets, screw the new motor into these brackets in the ceiling. Use a wrench for the process. This should be followed by connecting the lifting arm from the door to the track.

Step 5: Connect the Keypad to the Wall

Following the user manual, wire the opener keypad to the wall from the inside of your garage. You need to run the wire through a conduit to your garage door opener’s motor installed in the ceiling. Ensure that the keypad is correctly mounted outside your garage door and tighten using a screw.

Step 6: Mount Electric Eye

The step involves mounting the electric eyes about 6 inches from the floor on the inside of your garage.

Step 7: Power on the Motor

This is the last step to installing a new garage door opener. Locate the power outlet in the motor and plug it into the circuit panel. Turn the power back on.

Your garage door opener should be operational after this step. You can use your mounted keypad to test the opener’s functionality.

Frequently Asked Questions- FAQs 

Why does my Genie garage door opener reverse and open when I try closing it?

When your genie garage door opener reverses and opens as you attempt to close, the main problem could be an obstruction on the door’s path. Check and remove any form of a block (pets, crawling children, or objects) in the door’s way.

You can confirm if the problem is corrected by checking if the two sensors produce the yellow and green light. If one of the sensors flashes red, the problem has not been fixed.

Can you override garage door sensors?

Yes. You can effectively set an automatic garage door to a manual mode to bypass the sensors when your garage door sensor is faulty.

In addition, you can opt to disconnect the sensors completely from the garage doors. However, this could be detrimental because the entire automatic garage door system can malfunction.

Garage Door won’t open with a remote

When your garage door does not open with a remote, you might be out of range, or your antenna on the motor could be damaged or blocked from the signal. Always ensure that your antenna hangs down from the motor.

Another culprit for a failed door opening when using the remote is bad or depleted batteries. You could try opening the garage using a wall switch. If this happens, you need to change the batteries on your remote, and it will function normally.

However, if you have checked the above and all are in order, and the door would not open with the remote, you will be required to reprogram the remote.


The problem of your garage door opening a little then stopping results from misaligned door tracks, obstruction in the doorway, broken springs, and inappropriate force limit adjustments.

However, when you encounter these problems, you should not panic. In this article, I have illustrated the possible reasons a garage door opens a little then stops and the potential diagnosis or troubleshooting tips. I hope you find it helpful.

Do you know why your garage door sensors may produce red flashes? Let’s interact. Leave comments below.

2 thoughts on “My Garage door opens a little then stops -{Here is Why}”

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