I assume you are using angle iron bracket to hold it up. You may need a piece up to 3' or more to span 24" on center ceiling joists. Alternative is to angle your brackets from each side of the open over to a joist whereever that may be. The opener probably won't be centered between 2 joists. Or crawl up into the attic and bridge between 2 joists with another 2by and nail/screw it in. Unless your garage ceiling is painted, you should be able to eyeball the screws and seams into the joists. Or else use a studfinder to find them. Or if you found one, instead of cutting a line, measure over 16" or 24" (assuming you know which direction the joists are running which you can tell by looking at the roof) and run a screw/nail/drill bit until you hit a stud. A few little holes won't be noticable above the opener.