Automatic garage door openers are much more convenient than their manual counterparts, but they can be noisy. If different members of the household are coming home at different times of night, this can become a problem. Luckily, there are a few simple do-it-yourself projects that can keep your garage door opener quiet.
The first step is to make sure the rails, door springs, and chains are all clean. Dirt, rust, or other debris can cause the opener to run roughly and thus make more noise. A carburetor cleaner is quite effective at removing build up gunk and rust and can be found at any automotive store. Once the surfaces are clean, use some WD-40 to oil the chain and motor bearings. The lubrication will help your door operator to run more smoothly and thus more quietly. You may want to examine the garage door itself as well. If there are any loose pieces or anything that scrapes against the ground, you may have to do some door repairs before going any further.
To further decrease rattling, detach the part of the each rail that connects to the wall next to the overhead door, back the fixture with a small piece of rubber, and reattach it. This piece doesn't have to be anything fancy. Anything you have lying around the house that can be cut to size will do, including old door mats or mud flaps. This small buffer will prevent the rails from rattling directly against the wall and eliminate some of the noise. Test your garage door again to see how much of a difference these steps have made. If you are still unsatisfied with the noise level when the door gate rises, there is another step you can take.
For this step, you will have to detach the motor of the garage door opener from the ceiling. It's a good idea to have something like a tall stepladder placed underneath so you can set it down while you are working. You will be disconnecting the bolts, but the wires will remain attached and can only be pulled so far. As with the rails, you'll want to attach a piece of rubber behind the mounting bracket for the motor to reduce the noise level. When this step is done, you can reattach the motor.
Be sure to test your garage door opener after making any changes. If you feel uncomfortable making any of these adaptations yourself, consult a professional.