Chamberlain PD512 ½ HP Durable Chain Drive Review

If you are looking for a great garage door opener which comes with plenty of features but stays affordable, the Chamberlain PD512 ½ HP may be the best choice. The unit is developed for 7-feet sectional garage doors, but there are extensions kits which can make it compatible with larger doors.

Product overview

The Chamberlain PD512 may be one of the most affordable garage door openers with these specifications at the moment. Not only it is well-made, which we can see if take a close look at the design of the unit, central console, and remote controllers, but we can also notice the same thing further below, in the main components of the model.

Both, the electric motor, which has a 1/2 HP of power and chain mechanism are industrial grade components. This makes them extremely strong and durable at all times. You won’t have any issues with both of these as long as you use the garage door opener in question. It is truly a remarkable advantage if we know that the price is more than just affordable.

Another interesting fact is the level of safety this small garage door opener has to offer. Let’s just say that we have compared it with far more expensive garage door openers and the end result was almost identical! Of course, we will cover the subject in detail a bit later.

When it comes to compatibility, the unit in question is factory compatible with almost all vehicles on the roads today. Just in a case, your car isn’t, there is a connection bridge you can purchase and make your car fully compatible with the unit.

Overall, the model we have here uses the latest and the most sophisticated technology available in the industry and it measures high ranks in all fields. As a matter of fact, it is one of the most desirable garage door openers at the moment. If we add affordable price, we can deduce that it is a safe-buy and a wise investment.

Product Advantages

At the first sight, you may believe that there are no plenty of advantages here. After all, it is affordable garage door opener. But, if you pay close attention, you can see that there are plenty of advantage you are going to like.

  • Industrial grade chain mechanism
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Chamberlain usually uses this type of quality for more expensive garage door openers, which is perfectly reasonable. However, this model may be one of the first which comes with the same advantage, but at a low price. The chain mechanism is extremely tough and capable of providing impressively long lifespan.

  • Energy-efficient AC motor

The electric motor is also an industrial-grade component, but at the same time, it is energy-efficient. You won’t get a higher energy bill after the installation of this unit.

  • 1-button remote controllers

Two remote controllers, you will get in the package are a masterpiece. First and foremost, they are slim and well-made. They even look nice. Then we have the fact they come with only one button, which makes them extremely easy to use. Overall, they are an advantage of this package.

  • Long range

The remote controllers have a longer range compared to most, equivalent units. This made them easier and more practical to use. Keep in mind that this doesn’t make them less secure to use.

  • Extension kit available

As we have mentioned, this model is developed for 7-feet garage doors. However, if you have 8 or 10-feet garage door, you can purchase an extension kit which makes the garage door opener perfectly capable of opening all types of doors. We should add that the extension kit is affordable as well.

  • 100-watt lighting system

Among garage door openers from this price range and even some more expensive units, this is the only one which comes with two bulbs, every 100 watts. Usually, they feature a 60-watt lighting system. Obviously, the more the merrier, so here you can see one advantage more.

  • Extremely simple installation

Basically, you get pre-programmed remote controllers and a 5-piece rail system. All of this means that the installation process is easier than ever and you will need less time than in a case you are installing some, more expensive models.

  • Less interference than usual

All garage door openers work on frequencies which are used to open or close the door. Here we have a capable and sophisticated system which uses a modulating frequency. Basically, there are several ranges which are used to communicate between a remote controller and an opener. This means that there won’t be interference with other gadgets and devices which also use radio waves.

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Product Critique

An interesting fact is that we had a hard time discovering the drawbacks of this garage door opener. First of all, it is loaded with essential features and elements we can see on more expensive models. But, there are two downsides. The first one is in the accessories you will get. Yes, they are well-made and they even look great, but all of them must be pre-programmed before use. This increases the time you need to complete the installation process and make your garage door opener fully operational. Also, for older people, this may be a bit complicated.

The second drawback is in a case of damage. You will have to call a technician who will repair the unit. This increases the cost and prolongs the time needed for you to get your garage door opener operational back again. A good thing is the fact the unit is reliable, so chances are low that you will need a technician of this kind.

If you think that we forgot about the built-in battery, which allows you to use the opener in a case there is power outlet, you are wrong. This feature cannot be implemented with AC electric motors and it isn’t available in garage door openers from this price range. So no, this isn’t a drawback.

Safety and Security

Obviously, all homeowners are seeking for the ultimate garage protection. After all, garage is directly linked to the rest of your home and it should protect your vehicles, equipment and so much more. As such, some of the safety features have become standard over the recent years. One of them is known as the + 2.0 rolling code tech. It means that a different code is used every single time you open or close the door, so it is impossible for a burglar to get your correct code. Just to add, there are billion possible combinations.

Chamberlain PD512 also comes with a safety system which keeps door closed at all times, making them impossible to open unless you are the owner of the system. Only if you are, you will be able to open the door. The door will stay closed at all times!

Safety beam is implemented as well. If you already owned a garage door opener made by this brand, you know what it stands for. In essence, the beam is used to monitor for any obstacles such as children, pets or items. In a case something is detected, the central processing unit will prevent door closure and open them.

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Installation and Programing

As you may know, most of the garage door openers made by this brand are easy to install. The one we have here shares the same path. First, there is a professional manual which will assist you with the installation, even if you are a beginner. Then we have a lot of online manuals and videos which can help you get a job done as soon as possible.

Let’s not forget that the rail system has 5 pieces, which are easy to install as well. Preprogramming the accessories is a bit more complicated than usual, but it still can be categorized as simple and easy.

Overall, the installation procedure won’t take a lot of time and you will be able to get it done easier than ever before. In a nutshell, you will be a proud owner of an easy-to-install garage door opener.

Warranty and Support

The warranty and support are above the average and worthy of the brand. You get a 6-year warranty on the electric motor, which is more than usual and you get a 1-year warranty on other components, including chain mechanism and etc.

You can contact the customer support at any given moment via email or a phone call. They are very helpful and they can assist you with any issue you any have.

Garage door openers form this price range usually have a shorter warranty, which isn’t great. In this case, you get the most of it.


The Chamberlain PD512 is just perfect and probably the best choice if you are looking for a garage door opener which is affordable, yet powerful and durable. Furthermore, it comes with all the features you are going to need, so you won’t have to purchase another unit for a longer period of time. If we add industrial grade quality and a long-lasting warranty, we have one extraordinary model, which must deserve your full attention. Read our buyers guide to determine what is the best garage door opener to buy.