Programming your built-in car garage door opener

July 1, 2023

If you have recently purchased a new vehicle, you may have noticed the remote buttons dedicated to controlling your garage door opener located on the dash or above the center consol. Most of the newest car models now include this convenience feature, but it’s up to you to pair this remote with your garage door opening system.

Programming a built-in car remote is quite similar to programming a handheld remote, but knowing the type and age of your garage door opener may help you navigate the process.

How to program a car remote

Most of the garage door openers currently in use by homeowners use rolling code technology and are programmed using a learn button. Pressing and holding the learn button erases any old programming. Press and release that button to allow reprogramming of a new or replacement remote.

The process is much the same if you are programming the built-in remote in your car to work with the newer garage door opening systems. Follow these steps:

  • Clear the memory on both your garage door opener (by pressing and holding the learn button) and your car remote, even if your car is new to ensure you are starting clean. To clear your car, press the leftmost and rightmost buttons (most built-in car remotes will have three to four buttons on the panel) and hold them for 30 seconds.
  • You are ready to program. Press and release the learn button on your garage door opener. You will see a light flash or hear a click indicating it is in program mode.
  • Press and hold the button in your car until the light on your garage door opener flashes or you hear a series of clicks. This indicates they are paired.
  • Test to be sure your programming has been successful and repeat for additional garage doors and remote buttons in your car.

Keep in mind that garage door opening systems vary. Some will have lights and some will use a tone or clicking to alert you that programming is complete. On some door opener units the learn button will be under the housing or light lens and you will need to remove that part to access it.

You also will want to check the owner’s manual for your car for additional details and variations. For example, your car remote may use lights or beeps to indicate pairing is complete. Some systems require that you press the button in the car within 30 seconds of pressing the learn button so you may want to work with a partner, especially if your garage door opener using flashing lights rather than sound to indicate the pairing is complete.

Programming a car remote with an older garage door opener

If you have an older model garage door opener, you may be able to program your car remote with the handheld remote you use to open your garage door. Check your owner’s manual to confirm that your car remote features a light or beep to indicate programming is complete. Then hold the remote next to the buttons in your car and press and hold both the button on the remote and the button in your car that you want to program. Flashing or beeping will indicate the process is complete.

For garage door openers that predate rolling code technology, you may be working with DIP switches, which presents a compatibility problem with car remotes and all the smart home technology that is now available to homeowners. If your preference is to maintain your older system, you may be able to retrofit your older system with a unit that converts it to a rolling code operating system by replacing the receiver. Once hardwired to your opener, the box receives the signal from a remote and simulates the button press that activates your garage door.

Ask the experts at Above & Beyond Door Systems about your options for upgrading an older garage door opener for compatibility with new smart technology and built-in car remotes. We can help you take advantage of all today’s conveniences and security options.

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