Review of Linear Z-Wave Remote Garage Door Opener

Posted by: Jonathan Horvath 2 years, 1 month ago

Installation


The Linear remote garage door is fairly easy to install. Anyone should to be able to complete the installation in less than 30 minutes. Unlike many other types of smart home devices, it doesn't replace existing hardware. This device attaches to the existing mechanical garage door opener. This model only work with basic push button garage door openers that don't rely on digital signals. Most older garage door openers use a push button to momentarily short the circuit to activate the opener. Newer openers may use proprietary digital signals that require manufacture specific devices. Before purchasing one of these devices, check your garage door opener is not using digital signals.


The Linear Z-Wave remote garage door opener is actually two devices. the main unit is mounted near the existing mechanical garage door opener. The second device is a tilt sensor that sends the current position of the garage door via a proprietary wireless transmission. I installed the tilt sensor first. It is a small device that mounts directly to inside top of the garage door. You have the option to use double sided mounting tape or screws to attach it to the garage door. I used the screws, to ensure it wouldn't fall off over time. I guess the mounting tape could be used if there is a need to remove it in the future.


The hardest part in installing the main unit is determining where it should be mounted. One option is to mount directly on the wall near the mechanical opener. The other option is to mount it on the hardware that is already used by the mechanical garage door opener. I decided to mount it to the existing hardware, it seemed easier to bolt it on. After mounting the main unit, it needs to connect to the garage door opener with two wires. These run in parallel with the existing push button openers. The Z-Wave device doesn't disable the existing push button controls, it only adds functionality to your existing set up. I had to open the front of the garage door opener connect the two wires to the terminals. I was pleasantly surprise to find two burnt out incandescent light bulbs. I didn't realize that the mechanical garage door opener had lights. As a bonus, I added some additional home automation by replacing these bulbs. The new lights went on when the door opened and automatically turned off after a few minutes. With the hardware installed, the next step is to connect it to the Z-Wave network.

Operation

The Linear Z-Wave remote garage door opener doesn't do anything unless it is attached to a Z-Wave network. These garage door openers are not a common smart home device, so make sure that your Z-Wave hub specifically

supports the Linear model before purchasing. I was fairly certain my existing custom built system using OpenZWave would have issues. Sure enough the Linear Z-Wave device wouldn't properly include into the network. I've been considering migrating to a different system, and used this as an opportunity to start the conversion. Using a properly certified Z-Wave host device and library from Z-Wave.me, the Linear garage door opener was successfully included. I had to get the latest Z-Wave.me library version to be able to send the proper commands. Once everything was loaded, I was able to send commands to open and close the garage door. The main unit of the remote garage door opener would flash and make a loud sound before the door closes. I believe this action is to ensure nobody is standing under the door before it starts closing. Status are sent from the device indicating that the state of the garage door (closed, closing, open and opening). I notice all of these commands are encrypted, to minimize

the ability of someone hacking into the device. Once it fully operational, there is no need to keep the existing bulky garage door opener in your car. It can be open and closed directly from your smart phone. With smart lock, you can lock down the entire house before going to bed with a single button. One less thing to worry about before ending the day.