The goal of this project was to allow for access to open the garage door anywhere in the world. The reason this was important is because these openers come with mobile buttons that only reach about 100 feet away and it is more convenient to be able to do it anywhere with an internet connection. I had plans to modify this program for use with IFTT however, time did not permit me to do so, as the project took place back at home over one weekend. The process is simple, the Photon is used with an attachable relay shield that delivers power to the garage door opener itself and the manual power switch located on the wall of the garage itself. Once the program reads whether the door is opened or closed, it is supposed to tell the motor to activate, resulting in the desired direction. This is achieved by a simple voltage output from the Photon and relay shield combo.Process
Below is a video demonstrating the simple input of a "DO" button within Blynk. I used a simple code that can be found in libraries all over the internet. I then accessed some forums to get input on how to modify the program to my specific needs.
Although the door does open once accessed by the user input, I was not able to get the door to close. I'm certain that this is actually a drivetrain issue along the door tracks, rather than a coding or wiring issue. This particular garage door always has some quirks such as beginning to open but stopping a few inches above the ground, requiring the user to hit the manual button again to make it come back down and complete its upward transition. This is likely an adjustment that needs to be made on the door tracks themselves, so that the trigger that tells the opener when the door is down/up is more accurate.Errors
As stated before, there are mechanical errors that can prevent the code AND the actual opener itself from working properly. There are also potential code errors themselves that may need more professional attention. The resister choice might have an impact on the result if not used correctly. The app relies on a phone with an active internet connection, so this will not work if the phone is not in service. There is also potential problems with power loss to the Photon during a storm, etc.Lessons Learned
I have never done my own project from basic parts like this, and the wiring can be a bit dangerous since the garage door openers do seem to draw a lot of current. If given more time, I would re-write the code and have it done with the help of someone with much more experience in instrumentation rather than myself. IFTT would be an excellent way to improve this project. One possible problem I foresaw with IFTT is if the program is set up to ALWAYS access the door and open it upon arrival. There may be many times when the door need not be opened, and so either manually having to close the door or having to turn the program off in such situations seems like a hassle. Perhaps there are some solutions to this.Commercial Value
Aside from the obvious benefits over a standard garage door opener, this type of application can actually be utilized with any moving door, given the motor specifications. IFTT is a major breakthrough in this type of design because it allows smart access to remotely trigger an event, without manual input from the user.