If you’re lucky enough to have a garage, you gotta find some way to open up that big ol’ door. Nobody likes hopping out of their car in the rain, so you’ll want a garage door opener. That will, of course, come with a handy remote that you can clip onto your car’s visor like everyone else does. But if you want IoT (Internet of Things) control of your garage door, or simply want to make things more complicated, you can build your own WiFi-connected garage door opener remote with a Raspberry Pi and ESP8266.
If you already have some way to send MQTT messages, then you won’t actually need the Raspberry Pi. If you don’t, you can install Home Assistant on any model of Raspberry Pi to handle that. Home Assistant is home automation software that can be used to create your own IoT network that doesn’t rely on the services provided by companies like Google and Amazon. The ESP8266 board is what will actually interface with your garage door controls and has its own WiFi capabilities, but Home Assistant on the Raspberry Pi will act as a central hub that you send commands through.
Other than the Raspberry Pi and ESP8266 board, you’ll need a 5V relay, jumper wires, and some sort of enclosure to store everything. You can also add a DHT11 humidity and temperature sensor to monitor the conditions in your garage. The ESP8266 will connect to the garage door opener’s controller through the 5V relay. ESPHome software on the ESP8266 will trigger that relay when the correct MQTT message is received. There is currently no way to check if the garage door is open or closed, but that can be done with a reed switch — a provision which will be implemented into this project in the future. Follow through the guide’s instructions to install the code and configure it, and you’ll be able to control your garage door remotely from your smartphone or a computer!