Amazon Alexa is a great way to control your smart home products with voice commands. But there is one glaring exception: garage doors. Likely due to security concerns, Alexa simply does not offer native Smart Home Skills for this category of smart products (yet).
Does MyQ work with Alexa?
Yes, MyQ works with Alexa. While Alexa does not currently recognize garage doors natively, you can still use MyQ with Alexa by implementing a work-around using SimpleCommands. Download the SimpleCommands app and sync it with your MyQ and Alexa accounts to open and close your MyQ smart garage with Alexa!
MyQ with Alexa using SimpleCommands
While there are admittedly quite a few steps involved, I promise they are painless and simply require clicking buttons. Set aside 10-15 minutes to concentrate and you’ll be in business.
But before we get started, in order to get MyQ working with Alexa you’ll need the following:
- Smartphone or tablet
- MyQ Chamberlain garage door opener
- Amazon Alexa
- Alexa app
- SimpleCommands app
- Internet connection
- About 10-15 minutes
OK, let’s dive in.
1) Download the SimpleCommands app from the Apple app store or Google Play
2) Create an account. Once done app will say “Registration Complete”. You’ll get a verification email, so use a real email address. (HINT: check your spam folder! My email went into spam. With the new version of the app you may not actually NEED to register your account.)
3) Open the verification email and click “Confirm Email” (again, you might be able to skip this step)
4) Open the SimpleCommands app and login with your new account!
5) You will be brought to the home screen of the app. At the bottom select Add/Remove Items and find “myQ – openers” and click “Add“. You will be prompted to enter your MyQ email and password in order to sync it with SimpleCommands.
6) Now jump over to the Alexa app, click MORE and go to SKILLS and GAMES
7) Search for the skill “kloee for SC” and then “Enable to Use“. You’ll be prompted to grant Alexa access to your SimpleCommands account by providing your SimpleCommands email and password.
8) Back in the SimpleCommands app go the Menu at the top left (three bars) and then select Routines.
9) Give your Routine a name and then select Create Routine.
10) Next you’ll be promoted to add an item from a drop down list of all connected devices. Find your MyQ garage door and select it by clicking Add.
11) Select the garage door command you want to control and then tap Add Command (Don’t mess with any other settings!)
12) After you’ve added your command, you will be brought to the Routines page where you should see the Routine you just created! Click on your newly created Routine to edit it.
13) At the bottom of the Routine edit screen, select “Enable Voice Companion Alexa and/or Google Assistant“.
14) Toggle Voice Trigger to “Enabled” and then add a phrase for your voice command!
15) Go back to the Alexa app. Go to “Devices” at the bottom of the screen. Tap the plus (+) symbol at the top right.
16) Select “Add Device“
17) Scroll down and select “Other“
18) Tap “Discover Devices“.
19) You should see at least “1 scene discovered“. Tap “Done“.
20) Back at Home Screen of Alexa App, go to your menu and select “Routines“.
21) Add a routine by selecting the plus (+) sign at the top right.
22) In Add action tap the plus (+) sign.
23) Select “Smart Home“.
24) Select “Control Scene“
25) Select the scene you just created
26) Tap “Add“.
27) Enter a Routine name. Select “When this happens“. Select voice. Enter your voice command. Save the routine.
28) That’s it! You made it. Now try it out!
Alternative to SimpleCommands
If you’re looking for an alternative to SimpleCommands to use MyQ with Alexa, you should consider trying If-This-Then-That (IFTTT).
IFTTT is “the free way to get all your apps and devices talking to each other.” In short, it’s a great way for the makers of smart home products to connect their devices with other devices.
When setting this up for MyQ with Alexa, you’ll be asked to link IFTTT with your MyQ account. From there, enabling the functionality is as easy as clicking “Connect”.
A possible downside to this approach is that currently IFTTT only allows you to close your MyQ garage door with Alexa. But, as you’ll read in a minute, that might actually be a good limitation.
There are also additional capabilities with IFTTT that don’t involve Alexa at all, like setting up your MyQ garage door to close when you leave home.
The app sets up a geofence around your house and uses your cell phone location to know when you’re home, and when you’re not.
TIP: Search IFTTT and look at all the automation setups for ideas of how to control your own smart home! I found a bunch of useful automations this way.
MyQ with Alexa security considerations
Now that you have this power, I feel it’s important to cover a few security risks and how you can mitigate them.
For starters, don’t use an easy Alexa command like, “Alexa, open garage door“. Anybody could guess this and open your MyQ garage door by screaming this command from behind a closed window, gaining access to your home. This seems obvious but you’d be surprised how many people overlook this.
Instead, try something like, “Alexa, open garage door for Michael, please and thank you”. Still not the most secure command, but definitely better.
And while we’re on the topic, don’t set this up to open your garage door at all. Just use it to close the garage door.
There are really not that many instances in which being able to open the garage door with your voice while inside your home is necessary. Most times you’ll be walking out to the garage anyway, just use the garage door button.
But this is America, so you do you.
While MyQ doesn’t work natively with Alexa, there is a great SimpleCommands workaround that allows you full access to open and close your MyQ garage door with Alexa voice commands.
There are quite a few steps involved but it shouldn’t take more than 10-15 minutes tops to establish a connection.
If you’re only interested in closing your MyQ garage door with Alexa, try IFTTT. The integration is pretty seamless and easy to setup.
As always, make sure to consider security! By making sure your voice command is not too easy to guess and only using the command to close your garage door, you will greatly reduce the risk of a break in.
Were you successful in using MyQ with Alexa?