Automatic garage doors contain a bypass that allows you to open the door by hand. The bypass is a useful garage door component when the power goes out in your home, or you lose remote control and have no access to the door.


The bypass disconnects the door from the powered carriage, but it stays on the track. Once you disconnect it, you can then lift it manually. When the power comes back on, or you locate your lost remote, you can lock the bypass and use the door normally again.


Below is a step-by-step guide on how to open a garage door during a power outage.

1. Use a Safe Ladder

If you the bypass cord is not long enough for you to reach from the ground, you will need to use a stable ladder to reach it. The bypass cord typically has a red handle and is close to the door side of the track.

2. Pull the Cord Firmly

You may need to use slight force when pulling on the cord because the level that hooks to the door is tilted at a sharp angle. The lever is spring-loaded, so pull the cord until the lever locks in the down position.

3. Manually Open the Door

Grab the door with both hands and lift it. If the door doesn’t open, then the lever is still stuck in the slot. Pull the cord harder and remove the lever from the slot until the lever locks in the down position. If the door does not open, there may be a problem with either the door, the track, or the chain. A Garage Door Repair Company technician can inspect the door to identify the problem.

4. Do Not Let Go of the Door

Do not let go of the door once it's off the ground. It is free on the track, and it will fall if you let go. Prop the door open using a two-by-four or have someone hold the door open for you while you drive your car in or out. When you're finished with the door, ease it down by hand.

5. Lock the Lever Back Into Place

Pull down on the cord hard to lock it in place again after the power comes back on or you find your remote. Pull on the cord and watch as the bracket slips back into the chain bracket, locking the door into the powered carriage. Try the remote. If the door won't open, but the chain is moving, pull on the chain again until the bracket locks.

Garage Door Repair and Installation

If you need garage door installation or repair in the St. Paul, Minnesota area, then contact Garage Door Repair Company. We offer complete garage door service including inspections and total garage door system replacement.


To find out more about the garage door services we offer or to schedule a repair, 612-886-9606, or you can message us on our contact page.