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Chain Vs Belt Drive: The Quick and Dirty


We spend quite an amount to keep our vehicles safe inside the garages. It may include from building of garage to installation of best garage door and then finally choosing the best door opener for your garage. When evaluating which opener to buy most homeowners overlook the various options available to them in terms of the actual opening mechanism itself.

Of course we all know about the chain drive. It’s used in the large majority of homes. However, we wanted to shed some light on the other, and perhaps, more worthwhile versions on the market.

Why investing on good garage opener isn’t a waste?

It should be an understood fact that investments made on house last longer than life times. Sometimes parents make the smart choices and their kids get to cherish the facilities. Similarly putting up a good garage door opener can save you big time from getting drenched during a storm or crazy weather. Not only that but it will protect your home from intruders.

Only with the touch of a button you can access your garage during the harshest weather and you will escape the entire hassle of going out opening the door yourself. A technologically advanced opening system can make it very difficult for anyone to hack or break into your home. Evaluating what type of drive mechanism can play a crucial role in the security of your garage.

Types of garage door openers

With the advancements in technology the engineers have upgraded and come up with more suitable options for garage door openers. Most common ones available in the market are:

  • Screw drive opener
  • Chain drive opener
  • Belt drive opener

While we wanted to make a quick reference to the screw drive opening mechanism, it all really comes down to chain vs belt drives.

Chain Drive versus Belt Drive Openers


It has been seen that the chain drive garage door openers are generally found in the most garages. This is actually due to the fact that they are easily available in most common home centers and departmental stores. However, belt drive openers are quickly gaining popularity. At this rate they might even surpass the all-too-popular chain drive opener. Still, with them being comparatively new, it will take some time for them to fully penetrate the suburban market.

Which one is Faster?

Automated garage door systems aren’t generally designed to be very fast. This is attributed to the goal of avoiding any accidents. To prevent anyone getting injured during the process of opening a garage, a typical garage door opens or closes at the rate of 7-8 inches per second.

A chain driven system tends to bounce on the rail during the operation. This hinders the smoothness of the travel and thus affects the speed of the system. The belt driven system on the other hand is fairly smooth and is slightly faster than the chain opener.

Which one is Noisier?

Having a squeaky noisy garage door is just about enough to drive anyone mad. It’s important to factor in the quietness of each opening mechanism. Though a lot of noise buffers and other noise reduction products are there in the market, chain based system involves lot of metallic rails and gears which contact each other at times of operation and hence make a ear jarring noise. Whereas, the belt system runs smoothly and quietly along the rails.

Which one is Stronger?

A chain belt system made out of metal can bear almost every weight of garage door. There is certainly no doubt in the strength of metal. While not underestimating the belt drive system, I would say that it can barely cope with every standard garage door. Unless, you are going to get a garage door that’s something other than your traditional aluminum, for example a heavy wooden garage door. The belt in the opener tends to be made out of small pieces of steel so do not underestimate the power of belt.

Which one is Wallet friendly?

A belt driven opener does cost extra to consumer when compared with chain. But looking at the advantages it is pretty clear that it is worth the extra spent bucks.

Final Verdict:

Despite the higher initial price tag, the belt drive excels over the chain drive in just about every way. Lifetime, maintenance, noise, and durability are all features that we prefer with belt drive garage door openers. We always encourage you to do your own research before making a final purchase on specific brand. Thanks for reading! If you’d like to learn more about various openers and their benefits, give us a call!

And of course, always remember, if you’re in need of a garage door repair or maintenance check, feel free to visit Grapevine Garage Door Repair or give us a call at (817) 398-0022