# Looking for advice/instruction for building garage door closer project

M

#### mjohnson

Jan 1, 1970
0
I thought up an idea to hookup a timer to my garage door to ensure
that it is closed by 10pm each night. Since I have zero electronics
experience I figured this might be a good project to learn some basic
skill with for fun. I picked up a couple of Forest M. Mims books but
realized quickly I'm over my head as to now to decide what circuits I
would need; but, I didn't want to give up too easily and I'm hoping
folks here would enjoy helping me out.

The first phase of project as I envisioned it would include:
1) a timer
2) the garage door transmitter
3) photo sensor to determine if the door was up or down

The McGyver in me wanted to buy an inexpensive battery operated travel
alarm clock for the timer piece thinking that I wouldn't have to
construct a timer and interface. My thought was to tap the buzzer
leads to determine when the timer went off to actuate the "closer"
circuit. Otherwise, there is an example of building a 24 hour timer in
the Mims book that I could use.

Before getting to far into things my initial questions are:
1) could I use the travel alarm clock as described?
2) how do I interface the timer (either bought or homebuilt) to the
switch on the garage door transmitter?

For question #2 I assume that I can carefully unsolder the push button
on the remote transmitter and wire it to some sort of transistor type
switch or relay. Could someone describe some possibilities and hold I
might actually get it connected?

As far as the door open/close sensor goes I'm assuming it's straight
forward and that it would interface to the circuit with via an AND
gate. I'll look into that later.

Mark.

B

#### Bob Monsen

Jan 1, 1970
0
I thought up an idea to hookup a timer to my garage door to ensure
that it is closed by 10pm each night. Since I have zero electronics
experience I figured this might be a good project to learn some basic
skill with for fun. I picked up a couple of Forest M. Mims books but
realized quickly I'm over my head as to now to decide what circuits I
would need; but, I didn't want to give up too easily and I'm hoping
folks here would enjoy helping me out.

The first phase of project as I envisioned it would include:
1) a timer
2) the garage door transmitter
3) photo sensor to determine if the door was up or down

The McGyver in me wanted to buy an inexpensive battery operated travel
alarm clock for the timer piece thinking that I wouldn't have to
construct a timer and interface. My thought was to tap the buzzer
leads to determine when the timer went off to actuate the "closer"
circuit. Otherwise, there is an example of building a 24 hour timer in
the Mims book that I could use.

McGyver! A hero to all hobbyists...
Before getting to far into things my initial questions are:
1) could I use the travel alarm clock as described?
2) how do I interface the timer (either bought or homebuilt) to the
switch on the garage door transmitter?

Most garage door mechanisms have a manual override button. You may want to
interface to that instead of to the remote. On mine, for example, there is
a wire that runs from the unit to the button. I'm assuming the button is
normally open. Thus, you could use a little relay to short the two sides
of the wire, and thus activate the mechanism.
For question #2 I assume that
I can carefully unsolder the push button
on the remote transmitter and wire it to some sort of transistor type
switch or relay. Could someone describe some possibilities and hold I
might actually get it connected?

It's unlikely that your remote will interface properly to an electronic
alarm. You will probably have to measure the voltages and signals, and
then design some interfacing circuit. If you make the measurements, and
post the results, I'm sure somebody will step up to help you with the
design.
As far as the door open/close sensor goes I'm assuming it's straight
forward and that it would interface to the circuit with via an AND gate.
I'll look into that later.

Depending on the type of door, you could use a little opto-interrupter,
like they use in printers to detect paper. Alternately, some kind of
physical switch, even a wire that closes across two contacts, would work.

Mark.

Sounds like an interesting project. Good luck with it.

J

#### JeB

Jan 1, 1970
0
I thought up an idea to hookup a timer to my garage door to ensure
that it is closed by 10pm each night. Since I have zero electronics

I'd imagine you might get by with a lamp timer in parellel with the
wired button in the garage.

D

#### Dave

Jan 1, 1970
0
I use a magnet on the door and a reed switch mounted on the frame wired
to an indicator in the house to let me know when I left the door
opened.
cheap and simple.

C

#### Chris

Jan 1, 1970
0
mjohnson said:
I thought up an idea to hookup a timer to my garage door to ensure
that it is closed by 10pm each night. Since I have zero electronics
experience I figured this might be a good project to learn some basic
skill with for fun. I picked up a couple of Forest M. Mims books but
realized quickly I'm over my head as to now to decide what circuits I
would need; but, I didn't want to give up too easily and I'm hoping
folks here would enjoy helping me out.

The first phase of project as I envisioned it would include:
1) a timer
2) the garage door transmitter
3) photo sensor to determine if the door was up or down

The McGyver in me wanted to buy an inexpensive battery operated travel
alarm clock for the timer piece thinking that I wouldn't have to
construct a timer and interface. My thought was to tap the buzzer
leads to determine when the timer went off to actuate the "closer"
circuit. Otherwise, there is an example of building a 24 hour timer in
the Mims book that I could use.

Before getting to far into things my initial questions are:
1) could I use the travel alarm clock as described?
2) how do I interface the timer (either bought or homebuilt) to the
switch on the garage door transmitter?

For question #2 I assume that I can carefully unsolder the push button
on the remote transmitter and wire it to some sort of transistor type
switch or relay. Could someone describe some possibilities and hold I
might actually get it connected?

As far as the door open/close sensor goes I'm assuming it's straight
forward and that it would interface to the circuit with via an AND
gate. I'll look into that later.

Mark.
Providing there is nothing in the way when it is being closed - eg. car,
child etc. You could get a 240V/24h plug-in timer, Bunnings sell 2 of these
for $10, connect to a 12V transformer,$15 from an electrical wholesaler and
get a 12V ac relay. Connect your N.O. contacts across the manual button and
presto!

Cheers.

M

#### mjohnson

Jan 1, 1970
0
So to measure the "voltages and signals" at the output of the buzzer
would I just set the alarm off and use a multimeter to determine
what/if there is any voltage?

Would I do the same with the transmitter -- put a multimeter between
the switch and then push the button and see what registers. What kind
of numbers should I expect to see? Something above 1 volt but smaller
than 5 volts?

Is voltage and signal the same thing or do I need to measure the signal
differently.

thanks!

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