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add-a-motor D20 reliability

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by odysseychicken, Oct 8, 2015.

  1. odysseychicken

    odysseychicken In the Brooder

    Jul 21, 2015
    I keep going back and forth on what motor to use for my coop door. I have an antenna but don't like the idea that it needs constant power to stay open. I will be running everything off of a battery and want to use as little power as possible. I have also considered an automatic car window mechanism. I am not an electrical genius so the wiring of these things intimidates me a bit. I am sure if I knew how to wire it I could use a 12v cordless drill as the motor. Plug and play would be a huge plus for me.

    I love the simplicity of the Add-a-Motor D20 but read a lot of reviews about the plastic gears breaking. I am trying to get a sense of how common this is. The whole point of installing an automated door is so when I am away for the weekend the girls can still get out. But if it is likely to fail while I am gone it defeats the whole point. What is the general consensus here? Is there an alternative motor with metal gears? How reliable is the D20?

  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Free Ranging

    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
  3. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Songster

    Mar 17, 2015
    SW Ohio
    We have an add-a-motor D20 on our popdoor. The only problem we had is the string (which raises/lowers the door) broke. We had it maybe 3 months. Hubs replaced the string and so far has been fine. Other than that it's been very reliable.
  4. liz72703

    liz72703 In the Brooder

    Jun 19, 2015
    Fayetteville, AR
    As cavemamrich mentioned, the Add-a-Motor won't work with batteries, only AC.

    I bought this one from Fleming Outdoors:


    Easy to install, easy to configure and has worked flawlessly for me. It runs on either batteries or AC which was a big plus for me as someday I hope to have electric added to my coop and didn't want to have to buy a new opener. You can also purchase an optional solar kit to power it if you want.

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