Will Warren's GARAGINATOR Wants to Smarten Up Basic Garage Door Openers with Apple HomeKit Support

This ESP32-C3-based board can control two garage door openers with optional status reporting via Apple Home.

Maker Will Warren has built a device that aims to smarten up basic garage door openers, offering out-of-the-box support for the Apple HomeKit ecosystem and support for both actuation and status reporting — the latter with the addition of an optional sensor.

"GARAGINATOR v1.2 is a smart garage door opener compatible with Apple Home," Warren explains of the compact board. "It works with any garage door openers which use a dry contact like a wall mounted button to operate. GARAGINATOR supports two doors via onboard 60V relays which are used to simulate a button press (which operates the door)."

Built around an Espressif ESP32-C3 module, the board offers wireless connectivity to the Apple Home app — but everything, Warren explains, is handled locally, with no requirement for internet connectivity in order for the gadget to work. It's compatible, the maker says, "with most openers," bar newer units which incorporate security features beyond a simple physical push-button.

"Each door can also be configured to report the open/closed status of the door by connecting something like a magnetic reed switch to the door (switch closed == door closed) to one of GARAGINATOR's sensor terminals," Warren adds. "Reed switches are ideal for this, but anything which can form a circuit when the door is closed will work (limit switches, tilt switches etc)."

The GARAGINATOR is available on Warren's Tindie store at $55, with more information on his website; for those not tied into the Apple HomeKit ecosystem, Warren notes the ESP32-C3 can be flashed with a custom firmware.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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