How to manually open garage door?

How to manually open garage door?


Opening a garage door manually can be necessary in certain situations, such as a power outage or a malfunctioning garage door opener. Knowing how to manually open your garage door can save you from being locked out or inconvenienced. In this article, we will provide step-by-step instructions on how to manually open a garage door, ensuring you have the knowledge to handle such situations.

Step 1: Disconnect the Garage Door Opener

Before attempting to manually open the garage door, you need to disconnect it from the automatic opener. Locate the emergency release cord, usually a red handle hanging from the garage door opener mechanism. Pull down on the handle to disengage the opener from the door. This step ensures that the door can be operated manually without any interference from the opener.

Step 2: Identify the Type of Garage Door

Garage doors can be categorized into two main types: sectional garage doors and one-piece tilt-up doors. The method of manually opening the door may vary depending on the type. Sectional garage doors are the most common, consisting of multiple horizontal panels that slide up along tracks. One-piece tilt-up doors, on the other hand, swing outward as a single piece. Identify the type of door you have to proceed with the appropriate method.

Step 3: Manually Open a Sectional Garage Door

To manually open a sectional garage door, locate the handle or grip on the bottom panel of the door. This handle is typically in the center or slightly to one side. Grasp the handle firmly and lift it upward. As you lift, the door panels will begin to move along the tracks, eventually reaching the fully open position. Be cautious of the door’s weight and ensure you have a secure grip to avoid accidents.

Step 4: Manually Open a One-Piece Tilt-Up Door

For one-piece tilt-up doors, the process is slightly different. Start by locating the lever or handle on the inside of the garage near the top of the door. Pull down on the handle to release the door from the horizontal track it rests on. Once released, step outside and lift the door from the bottom, using both hands for support. As the door swings outward, guide it along the track until it is fully open. Exercise caution, as one-piece doors can be heavier and require more effort to open.

Step 5: Secure the Garage Door

After manually opening the garage door, it is essential to secure it in the open position to prevent it from closing unexpectedly. Use a locking mechanism, such as a C-clamp or vice grip, to hold the door in place. Attach the clamp to the track just above one of the rollers, ensuring it prevents the door from sliding down. This step is crucial for safety, especially if you need to work under the open door or keep it open for an extended period.


Knowing how to manually open a garage door is a valuable skill that can come in handy during power outages or when the automatic opener fails. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can safely and effectively open your garage door manually, regardless of the type of door you have. Remember to exercise caution and secure the door properly to avoid accidents.


– Chamberlain: How to Open Your Garage Door Manually –
– The Garage Door Centre: How to Manually Open Your Garage Door –
– Overhead Door: How to Open Your Garage Door Manually During a Power Outage –