How To Program Garage Door Opener In Car Without Remote

Last Updated on November 2, 2023 by Jason Nguyen

The typical process of programming a garage door opener, whether it is mounted in your garage or in your car, involves a remote control. But what if you do not have a remote and you want to program your garage door opener in your car? The quick solution is to reset the transmitter in an electronic keypad in your car. 

At this point, we know that this solution appears vague. But this post will give you the step-by-step guide on how to program a garage door opener in car without remote so if this is your immediate concern, read on. 

Materials and tools needed to program garage door opener in car without remote

Programming your garage door without a remote does not need anything serious. At best, you would just be needing your car’s user manual and of course, the main control box of your garage door opener. Other than that, there is nothing more to prepare. 

Steps to program garage door opener in car without remote

In programing a garage door opener in your car without the aid of remote, here are the following steps that you need to master: 

1. Choose your choice of controller

It can be an electronic keypad installed in your car but for more convenience, just locate the small control box that is built-in in your car. It resembles the primary control box of your garage door opener. It is usually found by the rear-view mirror or in front of the driver’s seat. It has four arrows and a LED indicator either in the middle of the arrows or on the side. 

2. Study the control panel

2 how to program garage door opener in car

For better navigation, match the positions of the arrows, how the LED indicator works, and how to operate the control box. Studying the control panel and what each button or arrow would do is easier if you have your car’s user manual. 

3. Start programming

3 program garage door opener to your car

To start programming, locate the ‘learn’ or ‘program’ button in your garage door opener. It is at the back of the unit and comes in yellow, red, orange or purple color. Press the learn button simultaneously with the arrows in your small control box. 

Press the buttons firmly and hold them down for at least 3 seconds to erase all pre-programed settings. The LED indicator should light up steadily for a few seconds before going dark. When the light is gone, that is how you know that all settings are flushed. 

4. Restore default settings

4 restore default button

To do this, you must go back to your garage door opener and key in the default code. The keypad will light up once the code is set. Start pressing the arrows in your car if the garage door responds. 

You can also test it by parking your car away from the garage door, say by a few meters away. As you pull up by the driveway, press the up arrow of your car and see if the garage door responds.

If it does, take note of the time it takes before the garage door opens so that you would know when to press it by the driveway when you arrive. If the programming worked, you would need an extra layer of security, so you have to set a new code. 

Related: How To Program Old Craftsman Garage Door Opener


Now that you have these steps to follow in programming your garage door opener without a remote, let us turn to other useful information about garage door openers. These FAQs range from other ways to program your garage door opener in your car and other concerns regarding garage door openers. 

How to transfer the remote control program for garage door opener in my car? 

If you have a remote control, but you intend not to use it to open your garage door, you can just transfer the program in your car’s mini control box. To do this, you have to follow these steps: 

  1. First, park the car inside the garage or near the garage door opener’s main control box. 
  2. Check your car’s inner roof and locate the buttons that you will be working with. It usually comes in three buttons. The LED indicator is usually above the second button and it should be off. 
  3. Now, press the two side buttons simultaneously and hold both down for 10seconds for resetting. When the LED starts blinking, let go of the buttons. 
  4. Next, take your remote control and choose the button that you want to replace. Point the remote on the control box while pressing on that button. After this, press the replacement button in the car’s mini control box while still holding on to the replaced button in the remote. The LED indicator in the mini control box should blink slowly at first and then faster until it becomes steady. 
  5. Let go of both buttons once the light is steady. After that, the light should go off. 
  6. Now, press the replacement button again. It should immediately turn red when you press it and shut off after you let go. If it goes like this, try it on your car. 

How to tell if the garage sensor is damaged? 

There are five basic indicators of a damaged garage censor. If anything of these happens, you would not be able to do any basic programming, so it is best that you know all about these. 

  • Closing issues: Either it is not closing all the way, closing it is difficult or the garage door is reopening immediately after it is closed. If one of these occurs, your garage censor might need replacement. For first aid, check any obstructions in the track or see if anything is misaligned. 
  • Photo-eye sensors: There are two photo eye sensors in your garage door. One blinks green for sending signals and the other blinks red for receiving signal. If they are misaligned, no signal is sent or received. Heat exposure can also be a factor so check the angle to which the sun beams on the photo eyes. 
  • Sensor lenses: Chances are, your sensor lens is full of dirt and dust. When it does accumulate dirt, no signals would not be sent. So, clean those sensor lenses and see if it does the trick. 
  • Sensor power supply: If the two sensors indicating power supply are both off, it means that it is busted. Unplug the cable for safety purposes. Wait for the current to come back and try powering it up.
  • Wire sensor damage: When the usually red lights blink orange, it is an indicator that your wire sensors are damaged. When this happens, consult a professional to fix it if they are broken. Straighten them up if they are just a bit twisted.  

Can you synchronize an old remote to a newer car?

Typically, no. You will have to get a remote control that is compatible with the model of your newer car. The code may also change, and it should be reset in the main control box. Just remember that if you are starting from scratch, a remote control is usually a must. 

What should I do if the steps did not work and now my remote would not open the garage door? 

If this happens, do not panic. You just must reset the remote and start the process again. For this, you need to follow these simple steps: 

  1. Press the ‘learn’ button firmly for at least 20 seconds to flush down programmed settings in the remote.
  2. Next, simultaneously press the learn button and the remote. Wait for it to blink before releasing. That means that it has been programmed.
  3. Now, press and release the learn button in the main control box and hold the replacement button in your car. Once the LED indicator in the main control box blinks, you are done. Try the remote again. 

Related: How To Program A Liftmaster Garage Door Opener

Can I reset my garage door keypad without a code? 

Absolutely and here are the three steps to do that: 

  1. First, reach the motor unit of your garage door opener. You will need a ladder for this. 
  2. Locate the ‘learn’ button and press it. The keypad will light up. Now enter your code of choice. Wait for the LED indicator to blink. 
  3. After the blink, press the learn button again and key in your new code. Check if it works. 

Why is my remote not working? 

When your remote is not working, it could be due to one of these reasons: 

  • You need to replace the batteries. Charge and try opening it. 
  • Your remote has corroded contacts. You must clean all the connections and then try again. 
  • Your garage door is on manual lock. You need to disengage this first before you can use the remote control again. Newer models would indicate this with constant blinking of lights. To deactivate the manual lock, just press and hold the lock button for five seconds. 

Can nearby interference affect my garage door opener? 

Yes. Electronics, security lights, and nearby radios can cause your garage door opener to work intermittently. This would be confirmed if your remote control only works if it is considerably away from these gadgets. To amend this, take sources of interference away from the garage door opener’s main control box or away from the garage door opener itself. 

Related: How To Program A Genie Garage Door Opener


Programming a garage door opener even without the remote is completely achievable. You will just have to move from the main control box to the mini control box of your car in between but the steps are not complicated at all. You just have to memorize the time intervals, the blinking patterns, and which to press and hold down simultaneously to program everything correctly.