We've researched the latest garage door openers, asked the experts, and sifted through thousands of specs, features and user reviews to find the best garage door openers around. Here's everything you need to know about the Chamberlain B970.
Chamberlain B970: What you need to know
The Chamberlain B970 is one of the most full-featured models in our comparison. It has a great warranty and it’s one of the best garage door openers for smart homes.
You get pretty much everything you need in one box - remote controls, safety sensors, outside wall control, wireless keypad and easy installation guides.
With 1 1/4 horsepower, the B970 is one of the most powerful models we reviewed. It can handle two-car doors up to 7 feet tall (or 10 feet if you buy an extension kit), which is more than enough for most garages. The B970 uses a steel-reinforced belt lift system, which makes it smoother and quieter than chain-driven units.
Chamberlain B970: Price
You can buy the Chamberlain B970 for around $245, which makes it one of the more expensive residential garage door openers on the market. (The average price for garage door openers is about $200.) We think the number of useful features in this product make it worth the extra cost.
Chamberlain B970: Features
You get lights with the B970, although the bulbs are not included in the box. The motion-activated lights help you find your way around the garage without the need for a switch, and they shut off after you leave to save energy. The B970 also has a timer-to-close feature that closes your door automatically after it’s been open a few minutes, though this is fairly common in mid- to high-priced garage door openers.
In addition to including the standard safety functions, the B970 has some notable features: battery backup and motion-activated lighting. The backup battery allows you to operate your door in the event of a power outage, which can give you some peace of mind if you have trouble with the emergency release.
Chamberlain B970: key Specs
Dimensions: 26.8 x 13.4 x 8.1-inches, rail length 9.4ft
Type: Belt drive
Motor horsepower: 1 1/4
Battery backup: Yes
Remote controls: 2 included
Warranty: Lifetime for motor and belt, 5-year for parts, 1-year for accessories
The accessories that come with the B970 are some of the best in our comparison. The unit comes with two remotes (each has three buttons to control three separate doors), an outdoor keypad and a wall control panel. Few openers include an outdoor keypad; not having to buy one separately helps make up for the higher cost of the opener.
The warranty on the motor and lift system covers those components for the lifetime of the product, which is the best you can get. The five-year parts warranty on the B970, although generous, isn't as good as lifetime coverage on the whole unit, which you can find on some of its rivals.
Chamberlain B970: Performance
When looking at the performance of the unit there are a few things we consider. How easy is the product to use? How reliable is it? And finally, how convenient it is. We're happy to say the Chamberlain B970 performs well in all these areas.
We love the built-in WiFi and MyQ app, which makes it easy to open and close the garage door from your phone. You even get a message to confirm that it's closed on your phone, for peace of mind. The included remotes for your car are great, and thanks to TriBand technology work from a good distance away.
In terms of installation, the B970 performs highly again, and you get some handy videos that show you how to install it.
As far as reliability goes, the belt drive system and powerful motor prove to be a winning combination, and the backup battery means you're going to be fine in the event of a power cut. Couple that with all the great features you get as part of the package and the Chamberlain B970 is a great offering.
Chamberlain B970: User reviews
During our research into customer satisfaction, we learned that the Chamberlain B970 is probably the most popular model on the market; the Home Depot website alone lists over 1,000 customer reviews. The Chamberlain B970 has high satisfaction, with an average rating of 89 percent, or 4.6 stars out of 5.
Customers liked that the B970 offered easy installation, quiet operation and a battery backup. Some complaints included possible Wi-Fi interference from the remote controls, incompatibility with LED light bulbs and difficulties in programming the unit.
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Additionally, customers liked the built-in Wi-Fi and myQ smartphone app, which is the highest-rated smart garage opener app available. This is a great unit for smart homes, as it’s compatible with the following platforms: HomeLink, Honeywell Total Connect, Nest, Wink, Alarm.com and XFINITY.
Interestingly, the opener is also compatible with Google Assistant and IFTTT, but myQ requires a monthly subscription fee of $1 per service (or $10 annually) to use these services with your B970. Monthly fees aren’t common among smart home platforms, so this requirement is disappointing. Likewise, the opener works with Apple HomeKit if you buy the $94 MyQ Home Bridge. There is no support for Amazon Alexa at this time.
Should you buy the Chamberlain B970?
We admit that it's unusual to have to subscribe to a service to get the MyQ mobile app to work with your Google Assistant and IFTTT, but the fee is small enough that you can think of it as part of the overall price.
However, this is perhaps one of the only negatives on what is otherwise a great product. It's got everything you need - a light, a backup battery, good controls, and Wi-Fi, plus it has a super smooth belt drive. This is a model we can safely recommend.
Alternatives to the Chamberlain B970 garage door opener
The Genie 1035-V is a budget garage door opener that gets the job done without breaking the bank. There's no backup battery or Wi-Fi built-in but you can't argue with the price.
If you want to add a camera, parking lasers and music to your garage door opener then consider the GD201 from RYOBI. It's the most customizable product in our buying guide.