Chain Drive vs. Belt Drive Garage Door Openers | Primos

Chain Drive vs. Belt Drive Garage Door Openers | Primos

It is understandable how difficult it is when choosing a garage door, but another choice that many do not consider is what type of opener for your garage door. Primos Garage Doors is here to help in the decision of your purchase and what to expect regarding cost, construction, strength and longevity, and noise for chain drive versus belt drive openers. These two options have similar functionality, however, differ in other areas.


Depending on the garage door you have and own, features come in a variety of price points. The less expensive option is the most common option, the chain drive. One could compare the chain drive to similar materials and appearance of a bicycle chain. A belt drive is more expensive due to the materials it takes to construct; however, the belt drive may be worth the extra cost to eliminate unwanted noise.


The belt drive operates on a pulley system with a strong belt made from a heavy-duty rubber or polyurethane. The belt drive is commonly used for heavier garage doors, and has reinforcements interwoven into the material to handle the weight. The chain drive system is similar to the belt drive, however, along with the pulley system a roller chain is used. Both systems have a slow and steady speed when opening and closing, however, the belt drive tends to have a more consistent and smooth operation.

Strength & Longevity

There is a difference in strength between the chain drive and the belt drive, typically the chain drive is stronger. Even though the belt drive is and can be used for heavier job, the rubber belt used for the belt drive can be stressed and break. The chain drives do not struggle to lift heavier doors and is generally safer for use when properly maintained.

The chain drives are metal on metal, and as such need proper lubrication, adequate alignment, and durable tension rates. If the chain drive is not properly maintained the pulley may start to rub metal on metal and create a metal dust to fall when running. The belt drives can also be sensitive to lubrication, alignment and tension if not properly maintained with the rubber belt.


Belt drives are seamlessly silent when well maintained. The belt drive is made with multiple layers of materials that allow for a noise-free experience. As previously established, the chain drive is metal on metal. This can create quite a bit of noise as the garage door opens and closes with the metals clanking together. The chain drive does not have the multiple layers and creates more noise than the belt drive. However, both drive systems can be noises without the proper maintenance of clean tracks, oil, and lubrication of the pulley system.

Primos Garage Doors to the Rescue

If making this decision becomes overwhelming or too difficult, Primos Garage Doors is here for you and will assist in making the best choice for you, your home, and your garage door needs.

Call Primos Garage Doors today at (720) 621-7737 for your free estimate and to schedule your appointment today for installation, maintenance, and repairs.

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Joshua Bradt