Garage Door Won’t Open With Wall Switch: What To Do

garage door wont open

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The garage door  Opener is controlled either with a wall switch or a remote control which facilitates the opening and closing of the garage door. One of the problems associated with the garage door is the failure to respond to the opening and closing of the door which can be linked to the wall switch refusing to work.

The wall switch might refuse to work due to wire disconnection, damaged wall switch, or other related issues which can be easily fixed after running a few tests on the wall switch and the garage door opener motor unit.

Why Is My Garage Wall Switch Not Working?

This could be due to a few things that can only be detected after performing a troubleshooting test. The reasons include;

1. The power outlet

The wall switch might stop working as a result of low voltage or an overloaded power outlet. A  burnt outlet might also be the cause of the issue, so, the first thing that might be wrong with your wall switch could be the power source.

The house circuit breaker too might be the source of the problem, as any issues from the circuit breaker will affect the whole house including the garage or somebody might have put off the opener connection from the circuit breaker.

2. Wiring Connection

A damaged, shortened, or loose wire connection will prevent the wall switch from working and this can be confirmed by using a jumper wire to jumpstart the wall switch and the motor unit. The wire needs to be replaced as soon as possible.

3. Damaged Motor Logic Board

The issue with your wall switch could be a result of a damaged or burnt motor logic board or faulty sensors and the motor cannot work except the logic board is replaced with a new one.

The issue will not only prevent the wall switch from opening the door but will also affect the movement of the door when being controlled with a remote or manually. Moreover, there is a low probability that the remote control will work without the wall switch working if you are making use of an old model of garage door opener.

4. Faulty Wall Switch

A damaged, broken, or loose wall switch could be the reason behind your wall switch refusing to work. A broken wall switch will refuse to press especially if the control button is broken or there is a loose wire connection.

An old opener wall switch too can stop working due to stress and this needs to be replaced as soon as possible.

How To Fix Your Garage Door Opener Wall Switch By Running A Few Tests?

The wall switch is easy to fix once you know the source of the problem and that can be done by running a few tests and fixing it immediately. Below is the required test to run but make sure you wear your gloves before starting the test.

Method 1: The Wall Switch

The first thing to check is the LED light or electronic display light on the wall switch for the light display.

  • If the light is off, quickly check the motor for the source of power by pressing the LEARN button.
  • Any light indication from the pressing of the learn button shows that the opener is powered.

The result of the test indicates that the issue is with the wall switch itself and this will require you to do a further test so as to know where the issue lies and how to fix it.

Method 2: Wiring Connection

The second test will require you to check the wiring connection.

  • Check the control wire that connects to the motor unit for a loose connection or wrong connection.
  • Check if the white wire is well connected to the white terminal and retighten if it is not well connected.
  • Confirm that the white wire with the red strip is well connected to the red terminal and fix if the wire is loose.
  • Check the wire connecting to the wall control to confirm if it is connected, if it is not, reconnect the loose wire.
  • Check the whole wire for any damage provided the wire path is visible.

However, for a single LED light wall switch, remove it from the wall and disconnect the wires from the back of the switch. Connect the bare ends of the switch wire together to test if the garage door will open.

If the garage door opens, that means the problem is with the switch and needs to be replaced but if the door refuses to move, then the problem lies with the wire as there might have been a break in it.

Method 3: The Motor Unit

On pressing the LEARN button and the indicator light refuses to come up,

  • Check your house circuit breaker to reset the garage door opener outlet.
  • If the opener is still yet to be powered, test the outlet with a small appliance such as a lamp.
  • If the outlet works and the motor unit refuses to work, it shows the problem is with the logic board which needs to be replaced.

The major things checked in the three tests are the wire, power source, motor unit (logic board), and the wall switch itself.

How To Confirm And Fix Wall Switch Wiring Breakage?

For wiring problems that exclude retightening off the loose wire and include wire breakage and to confirm this for a Single LED light wall switch, you will be needing a 3-inch jumper wire to bypass the existing wires.

Get a 3-inch insulated wire and strip off ½ inch insulation off the wire to use as jumper wire if you do not have one. Disconnect the wire from the motor unit and insert the jumper wire into the wall switch terminal on the motor unit to confirm the state of the wire.

If the door moves as a result of inserting the jumper wire, that means there is surely a break in the wire and if the door does not move it means the issue lies with the logic board. Replace the wire connecting the motor unit and the wall switch if wire breakage is confirmed.

For other types of wall switches different from the single LEd light, get 2 strands of insulated wire, strip off ½ inch insulation off both ends and use it as a jumper wire.

Disconnect the wire from the motor unit and disconnect the wall switch itself from the wall as you will be connecting the 2-strand insulated wire directly from the motor unit v to the wall switch.

Using the 2-strand wire, connect the red and white terminals on the wall switch with the red and white terminal on the motor unit. If the light comes up, this shows the wall switch is fine and the issue is with the wire which needs to be replaced. If the light doesn’t come up, it shows either the wall switch or the logic board in the motor unit is faulty and this needs to be replaced.

How To Replace Wall Switch?

From the test, it has been confirmed that the issue could be from the wall switch and needs to be replaced. Here is the simple way to get your wall switch replaced after you might have worn your gloves and get your tools ready.

The first  thing  to  do  is to turn off the outlet  from  the house circuit  breaker or remove the opener from the power outlet and follow the following  procedures;

  • Unplug the power source
  • Pull the control button off the old wall switch
  • Remove the top mounting  screws
  • Pull the wall switch out slowly and release it from the bottom mounting screw.
  • Disconnect the wires from the wall switch by losing the wire screws.
  • Attach the wires to the new wall switch by attaching the red wires to the red terminal and the white wire to the white terminal.
  • Then place the wall switch gradually on the wall securing it with the top mounting screws.
  • Replace the control button with its position.
  • Plug back the opener or switch on the circuit breaker and test your wall switch.
  • Enjoy the usage as it is now in good condition.

Can Garage Door Operate Without A Wall Switch?

Yes. New models of garage doors can operate without a wall switch as there are new provisions made available for the operation of garage doors without a wall switch and this allows for ease of operation.

Keypad remote control and smartphone can be used instead.

What Are The Other Garage Door Opener Issues?

Other garage door problems apart from it not opening with the switch need to be checked into so as for you to be well informed on what to do when such happens:

– The Garage Door Not  Opening With The Remote

Your garage door might not respond to the opener remote control based on a few factors and they are;

  • Expired batteries or loose battery connection.
  • The remote control is not within the reach of the opener.
  • Malfunctioning remote control that can only work through reprogramming.

– Reversing Of Garage Door Before Closing

This issue always happens when there is a misalignment of sensors which makes the door sense that something is obstructing it when nothing is actually there. It can also be caused by damaged rollers.

However, it can be solved by simply cleaning the sensors or troubleshooting them to align them right.

Other problems with garage door openers apart from the common  ones discussed above include the following;

  • Opening of garage door with the motor still running, which usually happens when an opener is newly installed.
  • The garage door refuses to open with the remote or wall switch due to weather conditions.
  • The garage door reversed after closing.


A garage door opener is an electrical appliance that can malfunction anytime and needs to be maintained properly by always paying attention to the sound of the opener and the door when closing and opening it.

The garage door opener wall switch should be rightly placed inside or close to the garage door outside and must be out of reach of pets or kids as they also contribute to the malfunctioning of the wall switch.

Moreover, be careful to wear your gloves and protective clothing when troubleshooting your garage door opener motor unit and wall switch as this will protect you from any unforeseen hazard.

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Written by Timothy Amin

Timothy is a seasoned expert when it comes to garage doors. With over 15 years of experience in the industry, John has installed, repaired, and maintained countless garage doors of various types and styles.