How to Clone Your Garage Door Remote

One of the most frequently underappreciated conveniences in modern homes is having garage door opener remote controls.

A standard garage door opens and closes at least 1500 times a year and having to get out of your car to enter the garage is just too much of a hassle if not completely unimaginable.

Your garage door opener will come with its original remote control which is already pre-programmed to your unit.  

But if you are three or four family members, each with your cars, and your schedules are not the same, you will need more than one garage door remote.

Here we discuss everything you need to know to program your new garage door remote from another remote.

What are the steps to program a garage door remote?

  1. Check the compatibility of the remote control to your existing garage door opener unit first.
  2. Once you purchase the new remote control, place it next to the original remote.

On the original remote, press and hold the button that you want to replicate the program to the corresponding button of your clone remote.

Then press and hold that button on the clone remote until you observe quick flashing on the LED light of your clone remote.

  1. Test your clone remote on the garage door opener and troubleshoot if needed.

Get to know your garage door opener system

This is the first thing you need to know when you want to program any garage door opener remote control.

Take note of the brand and model number of your garage opener unit and always keep the instruction manual handy.

Different garage door openers brands and even across opener models of the same manufacturer will have different options for the type of remote controls they can pair with.

Most garage doors today are of the overhead garage door type.

If you do not know where to find the manual, check the monitor unit or control panel on the ceiling or the receiver unit close to the antenna.

It should also have the information you need. With this, you can buy a garage door remote that is an exact replacement of the original.

Look for authorized representatives of your manufacturer, or go to your favorite Home Depot, or through an online search for other suppliers.  

This is especially useful if you have older model garage opener systems because universal garage door remotes will more likely not work on them.

  • Older garage door models utilize DIP switches as signal receiver. This is to be expected for units manufactured in 1993 or earlier.

To program the new remote with this technology:

  1. Open the battery compartment of the original remote transmitter first. You will see the DIP switch panel.

You can also look at the DIP switch on the receiver of the garage door system. The series of on and off switches are the same for this and the original remote.

  1. Imitate the series of on and off switches on the DIP switches of your copy remote using a small screwdriver or a paper clip. This is the most crucial programming step for this type of remote.
  1. Check if your clone or copy remote is now working.

New remotes for garage door opener systems use photodiode sensors. Instead of a DIP switch security, you have a rolling code that is almost impossible to bypass or copy.

Most universal garage door opener remote controls will work for these recent models.

Genie garage door openers and Chamberlain garage door openers are only useful for these types of door systems.

Types of Programming for Modern Garage Door Remote Controls

Most of the existing garage door remote controls nowadays can be programmed by any of the two types of programming:

Direct Synchronized Programming.

This is the most convenient and well-known method for the majority of homeowners with garage opener systems.

You need to utilize the LEARN button, SMART button, or PROGRAM button of the receiver unit of your garage opener.

Follow the instructions below to do this on a new remote:

Step 1.  Quickly press the LEARN button on your garage door opener machine until the light goes on. The light bulbs will be on for 30 seconds.

Step 2. For some remote controls, you may need to press a different button or a momentary switch before trying to program a certain button to open your garage door.

You can find this switch when you remove the battery cover. Press it until the LED on the remote lights up.

Step 3. Synchronize the garage door to the new remote while the light blinks bulbs are still on or flashing on the door control.

Press and release the new remote button ( also called a HomeLink button on some remotes) that you want to use for your garage door.

Keep pressing and releasing until you hear two clicks or see the light blinks from the garage door opener machine.

Step 4. For some remote controls, you need to lock in the code by pressing the program button, usually found below the button you programmed to open the garage door system.

Step 5.  Check if your new remote is now working.

Cloned Programming.

This is only possible for specialized remote controls that can copy the frequency of the original garage door remote control.  

For this, do the following steps:

Step 1. Place the copy remote next to the original remote.

Step 2. On the original remote, press and hold the remote control button that you want to replicate the program to the corresponding button of your clone remote.

By doing this, you are sending a signal using the original garage remote opener transmitters.

Step 3. Then press and hold that button on the clone remote until you observe quick flashing on the LED light of your clone remote.

This indicates that the programming of the original remote has been successfully copied by your new remote.

Step 4. Test your clone remote on the garage door opener and troubleshoot if needed.

Garage Door Remote Troubleshooting 101

If you followed the instructions from the user manual of the new remote but it still does not work, check out the following common causes:

  1. The remote control needs a new battery. 

The battery may be depleted. Also, some remote controls need to be reprogramed whenever the battery is replaced.

  1. The LEARN button could have been pressed too long. 
  • A long press on the LEARN button clears the memory of the opener system. 
  • During the programming step, you may have pressed this button too long.
  • Just reprogram the remote using the instructions earlier.
  1. The lock button on the remote is activated. 
  • You will know this because the light on the door opener control panel is blinking.
  • Press and hold the LOCK button to unlock.
  • Repeat if you want to turn on the lock feature again.
  1.  The remote control needs to be reprogrammed. 

With regular usage, there can be signal disruption between the garage door machine and remote control.

When this happens, you need to rebuild the communication between the devices by erasing the previous codes or programs and redoing the programming.

  • You need to clear the memory of the garage door opener system by pressing and holding the LEARN button until the LED light is turned off.
  • Then you can proceed to reprogram your remote control and wireless keypad.
  1.  The remote control is out of range or the antenna of the receiver unit of your door opener system is broken. 

You need to be within a 20-feet distance from your garage door for the signal of the remote to be strong enough.

The antenna must also be free from debris buildup and damage to work properly.

  1. The door control wiring is faulty
  • Check for malfunctions on the wirings at the back of your garage door opener.  
  • You may resolve this by unplugging the opener system and disconnecting the wires from the opener motor unit, reconnecting then reprogramming the remotes.
  1. Your new remote is not compatible with the door opener system or the remote you used for programming.

If you find that the remote is still not working despite these self-checks, the next step is to call your most trusted professional repairmen to do the job.


Can you program a garage door opener with another garage door opener?

Yes. However, this is only possible for a few garage door remote brands, those equipped with the ability to send, receive and utilize a new code.

Most remote controls are made to be programmed directly into the garage door opener machine, not using another remote.

Can I program any remote to my garage door?

Not all garage door remote control is compatible with your garage door opener machine.

Make sure to take note of the model of your garage door opener before purchasing a remote.

A universal garage door remote will most likely work but it is better to be sure by checking the compatibility to your garage door opener.

How do you program a universal garage door remote? How do I pair my garage remote?

  • Step 1. Take the cover off your universal garage door remote. When you find the Momentary switch, press and hold until you see the LED light.
  • Step 2. Press the learn button on your garage door opener machine until the light goes on.
  • Step 3. Synchronize the garage door to the remote. Press button 1 on the remote until you hear a click or see the light blink or flash from the garage door opener machine.
  • Step 4. Lock in the code by pressing the program button, usually below button 1.

What is the maximum number of remotes that can be programmed to a garage door opener?

The memory on the door opener circuit board is of course limited to a certain number of remote controls it can be connected to.

This depends on the brand and model of your garage door opener.

Most models from 2015 to present models will allow you to program at least 8 remote controls, one wireless keypad entry system, and 10 Internal Gateway Wi-Fi Garage Door Openers.

Always check the manual of your garage door opener to be sure.


You can program a new remote from another remote or directly to the garage door opener system.

You just need to make sure first that the remote is compatible based on the current model and brand of your unit.

Always double-check with the user manuals of both the remote and the unit.

D. Hahn

DIY guru, dad, husband, blogger. When I'm not creating life hacks I'm teaching my kids how to fix stuff after their dad breaks it.

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