I have a 2x4 nailed to two other 2x4’s protruding from ceiling. This is used to hold up garage door opener. There is a light socket behind it and I wanting to attaching motion sensor socket to it but I believe 2x4 cross piece will block line of sight of sensor. If I was to cut a section of 2x4 cross piece, would it reduce the strength of 2x4 cross piece as far as it being able to hold up garage door opener? Any ideas on motion sensor light socket line of sight issue other than moving socket?enter image description here

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1: Yes it will reduce the strength and depending on how you cut it will determine how much and to what catastrophic point it will fail. A Drilled hole for line of sight is one thing a cut out is another.

The following two comments do not directly answer your question but need to be stated. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings by posting them just trying to provide some constructive feedback and I am saying ti because someone needs to say something to help you.

2: That protrusion of 2 x 4's from the ceiling down - that is a terrible (atrocious) mounting for a garage door opener installation! The 2 x 4 should be mounted between above the ceiling between the rafters then your metal mounting for the opener should be on the ceiling side mounted to that 2 x 4 - taking up minimal space and would not be such an eye sore. Of course if this part was done right you would not be asking your question here about your motion sensor.

3: I see that free romex wire running down and I am assuming it is rigged to an electrical outlet for the opener or maybe hooked to it directly - I will state this if you are in the USA ..it is a code violation. You should have that fixed and done right too - install an outlet box in the ceiling and plug your opener power cord into it.

I am not trying to be snobby or anything like that .. normally I don't answer this way but in this case I feel compelled to so that perhaps you will make it right and will not have any issues in the future, especially with your wiring .. like perhaps a fire!

EDIT 3-29-2018 Wiring fix:

Garage Ceiling Wiring Fix

  • 1. I was leery of cutting it even before I asked. 2. I understand criticism and am not mad or anything. 3. It is wired to junction box not between rafters but at another location in the attic not far from rafter location. Even at that, I suspect it is still in violation of code because there isn’t a ceiling mounted junction box. Am I correct? – georgia-guy Mar 28 '18 at 14:08
  • @dwhorne Your romex wired in the attic to a junction box is not the issue. What is on the outside is. 1: Your romex wire is exposed like an extension cord it is not concealed (within a 15 minute fire rated wall ceiling, floor etc..) nor is in conduit. NEC 334.10. The easy fix is to put your electrical box in the attic and plug your openers power cord into it. 2: What is your romex connected to I know in the attic you said a junction box (where that is, is not an issue). But what does it connect to on the outside of the attic - the garage opener ?? a Junction Box, a receptacle? – Ken Mar 29 '18 at 8:57
  • The romex you see comes down and is wired into garage door unit hanging from hanger ties. I don’t believe it had a power cord option, just the hard wired version. Would the easiest solution be to use conduit? – georgia-guy Mar 29 '18 at 15:08
  • I think it is easier and cheaper to add the ceiling fixture (an outlet box $4 with a receptacle $2) and then add a power cord $5 to the opener than it is to run conduit. Running conduit is much more complex and costly in your situation ($$) as you would most likely need two junction boxes and the conduit. Another advantage to just the receptacle box is you have an additional receptacle as well. What model opener; I can't imagine one with out a power cord connection. See my added picture on how to fix that. – Ken Mar 29 '18 at 19:49

would it reduce the strength of 2x4 cross piece as far as it being able to hold up garage door opener?

Yes it would reduce strength. To the point of failure, who knows? You only say that you would "cut a section" but you do not describe exactly how much.

ideas on motion sensor light socket line of sight issue other than moving socket?

Yes, extend the bulb down using a "bulb extender" available at your local hardware store:

enter image description here

  • Regarding the bulb extender, could you install motion sensor socket in it and then install led bulb or would I be better off installing bulb with sensor built in. The only thing about that type is they don’t stay on long when out of range of sensor-around 10 seconds. – georgia-guy Mar 28 '18 at 6:43
  • I don't see why you couldn't "piggy back" the sensor onto the extender, then screw the bulb into that. Hopefully it would hang down low enough to clear the 2x4. – Jimmy Fix-it Mar 28 '18 at 6:49
  • I am sure it would clear after that. You don’t think weight of all that would be an issue? Heat? Connectivity through that many connections? – georgia-guy Mar 28 '18 at 6:54
  • I don't think those things will be an issue, and suggested the extender as the simplest fix. A better way would be to use a metal 4/O box extension (cdn2.rexelusa.com/medias/sys_Rexelusa/images/images/hb6/h9c/…) to lower the actual electrical box, then reattach/rewire that lamp socket cover to it. – Jimmy Fix-it Mar 28 '18 at 15:25

Move the 2x4 to the other side of the protruding 2x4's.

  • The cross piece 2x4 is what the garage door is hanging from. – georgia-guy Mar 28 '18 at 5:47
  • I understood that. reattach the opener to the new 2x4. – GuestGuru Mar 28 '18 at 5:57
  • Of course, I wouldn't go through that until knowing for sure that there is an issue. – GuestGuru Mar 28 '18 at 5:59
  • I don’t think that would be a possibility. I added a picture to main question showing side view. If I put 2x4 on back side of 2x4’s coming from ceiling they would go right across where the light bulb is. I think the motion detection won’t work where currently set up because sensor on sockets are near the base of motion sensor socket and the 2x4 would block it. They do make some bulbs with motion sensor built in but from what I read they don’t stay on very long once out of sensor’s range . (Around 10 seconds on most) – georgia-guy Mar 28 '18 at 6:24
  • 1
    In place of the 2x4, you could use a piece of angle iron (kind with predrilled holes for example) , or move the hanger straps to mount directly to the two protruding 2x4's, which will place them at an angle. – GuestGuru Mar 28 '18 at 6:30

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