California SB 969
California has recently had its most destructive fire season with widespread power outages that made it difficult and or impossible for some to escape. With the loss of electricity, garage door openers were impacted and deaths were attributed to homeowners becoming trapped and who perished because they could not open their garage doors manually.
Reports from the 2017 Northern California fires recounted stories of neighbors stopping to help raise garage doors for elderly people who didn’t have the strength to manually open their garage door, and a mother who struggled to get her disabled son into a car because their custom van was in the garage they couldn’t open.
On September 1, 2018 Governor Brown signed SB 969 into law. This legislation requires newly sold or installed garage door openers in residential applications to have battery backup up in the state of California.
California SB 969 Facts!
• The law goes into effect July 1, 2019.
• The law applies to all new garage doors and garage door opener installations.
• Homeowners must install a battery backup opener when a new door is installed or when they replace their existing opener.
• Existing openers in use will not have to be replaced with battery backup openers unless the door is being replaced.
• On or after July 1, 2019 no person, corporation, or entity shall manufacture for sale in this state, sell, offer for sale at retail or wholesale, or install in the state of California a residential automatic garage door opener that does not a have battery backup function that is designed to operate when activated because of an electrical outage.
• Failure to follow this will result in a civil penalty of $1000 per opener installed and operational.
Here is what was signed into law:
This bill, beginning July 1, 2019, requires an automatic garage door opener that is manufactured for sale, sold, offered for sale, or installed in a residence to have a battery backup function that is designed to operate when activated because of an electrical outage. This bill would make a violation of those provisions subject to a civil penalty of $1,000. This bill will, on and after July 1, 2019, prohibit a replacement residential garage door from being installed in a manner that connects the door to an existing garage door opener that does not meet the requirements of these provisions.
Homeowners will have to test the functionality of the garage door opener batteries – Homeowners will have to remove and replace garage door opener batteries (including proper disposal) – Listing and Selling Real Estate agents will have additional request for repair items – Other issues yet to be determined