Most, if not all garage door openers have small remotes so you can open and close the door from your car. However, you can take things a step further by adding smarts to your garage door opener. Doing so will not only let you monitor and control it from your smartphone, but also link it to other smart home devices, so that your house lights will turn on when you arrive home.
Based on our extensive research, which included evaluating both product reviews across the web and user reviews, the top product in this category is the Chamberlain MYQ-G0301. It works with a large number of smart home systems and garage doors and is easy to set up. However, if you want to use it with Google Assistant or IFTTT, you'll need to sign up for a subscription plan. If you don't want to pay a recurring fee, we recommend the NEXX Garage NXG-100b, which has a little more involved set up, but works with both Alexa and Google Assistant.
Latest News and Updates (February 2019)
- Chamberlain owners can soon get Amazon packages delivered to their garages. Amazon's Key for Garage service, which is launching in 37 cities, allows myQ users to pair their garage door openers (which includes Chamberlain and Liftmaster units) with their Amazon account, and then let Amazon Key drivers leave packages inside their garage. The service will launch in the second quarter of 2019.
- For HomeKit users, Best Buy's Insignia Wi-Fi Garage Door opener ($69) works with Apple's smart home system.
- Senclo's Fi Garage Door Opener ($399) is much pricier than most other models, but also comes with a touchscreen controller, and has other features such as Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, geofencing, notifications, and guest access. The Fi Mini ($199) has all the same features, but does not include the touchscreen.
Chamberlain's MyQ device includes a sensor for your garage door as well as a hub that connects to your Wi-Fi network. When you send a command using your smartphone, it is relayed to the hub, which then goes to the sensor that activates your garage door. The MyQ app, available for Android and iOS devices, lets you check to see if your door is open, and then close — or open — it remotely.
MyQ will work with most brands of garage door openers made after 1993 that have standard safety sensors, according to Chamberlain. (Here is a link to compatible garage door openers.)
Currently, MyQ works with Nest, SmartThings and Xfinity Home smart home systems. Apple HomeKit compatibility requires the purchase of a $49 adapter. This will let you control your garage doors using Siri, and create scenes so that the lights come on when the door goes up.
Chamberlain also works with Google Assistant and IFTTT, so now you can use Google Home to control your garage door, too. However, in order to use MyQ with Google Assistant or IFTTT, you have to sign up for a $1/month or $10/year plan with MyQ. That's a bummer. Also, it doesn't work with SmartThings or Alexa.
User Reviews: What owners are saying
Chamberlain's MyQ G0301 has an average rating of 3.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon. However, its nearly 1,500 reviews get a rating of F by Fakespot, a site that looks to see if reviews are legitimate. However, the reviews of the previous version, the G0201, have a much better Fakespot rating of A.
"It's really a simple device and easy to install. I installed it and got it up and running in less than an hour," wrote one customer. "No hubs or anything else is needed -- other that a wi-fi signal. Works as expected and I will buy the second sensor, soon."
However, others complained about the extra fee to use it with Google Assistant. "I haven't heard of any other company to have subscription fee for connecting to Google or Amazon," wrote one person.
The Nexx Garage door opener works not only with Alexa, but with Google Home, too, so you can open or close the door using voice commands. And, unlike Chamberlain MyQ, there's no subscription fee. However, setup is a little trickier, as you have to run a wire from your garage door to the garage door opener.
Similar to with GoGogate, Nexx owners can give permission to multiple users, and a calendar in the app lets you see when the door was opened, and by whom.
In addition to asking Alexa or Google Assistant to open your door, a feature called Just Drive uses geofencing to detect when you're arriving home, and will automatically open the garage door of you so choose.
Nexx has a list on its site of garage door openers that won't work with its system, though it acknowledges that the list is incomplete.
User Reviews: What owners are saying
Over more than 1,700 reviews, Nexx Garage is highly regarded by Amazon users, who gave it an average review of 4.2 stars. (Fakespot gives these reviews a B, and says that more than 80 percent of these are high-quality, too.) Customers praised Nexx's customer support, but more than one reviewer noted that a little DIY know-how is needed to install the device. "You will need to build a custom bracket to mount the sensor flat and really close between the door and the wall," was a typical response.
Unlike most other smart garage door controllers, Gogogate has an app that lets you create additional users, so that you don't have to share a single account among family members; it's also helpful for providing temporary access to guests.
While it isn't natively compatible with as many smart home systems as MyQ and GoControl, GoGogate does work with IFTTT, which means you can have it automatically open or close your door using geofencing. Also through IFTTT, you can link it to Alexa, as well as other smart home systems.
Cleverly, Gogogate's app can display feeds from a variety of security cameras. A video plug-in subscription ($29.95 for three years) is required, but it also comes with 1GB of storage per month and 1GB of real-time video monitoring per month.
User Reviews: What owners are saying
GoGogate has been reviewed by more than 300 customers on Amazon, who give it an average of 3.8 stars. (Fakespot gives these reviews an A, with more than 90 percent being high-quality.) However, many reviewers, even those who liked the product, said that installation was less than intuitive. "The documentation for setting up and troubleshooting this device could definitely be improved," wrote one person.
What to Look For When Buying a Smart Garage Door Opener
If you're don't have one already, you can purchase a garage door opener that already has smart home compatibility built in. However, if you have an older garage door opener, you can make it "smart" by purchasing a kit that will let you connect it to the Internet, thereby allowing you to control it remotely using your smartphone.
Before you buy a smart garage door opener, you should make sure it will work with your existing garage door. Usually, you can find out which doors an opener is compatible with on the manufacturer's site.
Also, some smart garage door openers have Wi-Fi, while others use Bluetooth to connect to your phone. We recommend sticking with Wi-Fi models, as they'll allow you to remotely monitor your garage door; Bluetooth models will work only when you're within about 20 feet of the garage.
You also want to find out how many smart home systems each garage door opener is compatible with — the more, the better, because you'll have more options when building out your smart home.
If you're buying a completely new garage door opener, there are many models from Chamberlain and Genie with this technology built in. For example, the Chamberlain B550 ($193) comes with MyQ baked in, so you don't need to purchase a third-party accessory.