Choosing the right electric gate kit can seem like a minefield of options so we have made it easier for you to make your decision. There are a lot of factors to consider when choosing the right gate kit. To make it easier to decide which will be best for your electric gate openers installation, please select the type of gate you have below.
What is your gate made from?
This is an important factor to consider. Is your gate closed boarded i.e. a timber or composite infilled gate which you cannot see through?
If it is then this kind of gate will require strong forces to operate due to wind resistance. The only type of motor that can be used on a closed boarded gate is a 230V hydraulic kit. You can get either hydraulic arms or underground motors so there is still a good range of choice.
The reason you cannot use a 24V kit on this type of gate is because they feature a stop and reverse on obstacle detection function. Wind resistance against a closed boarded gate will trigger this safety feature and mean that the gate will not open or close, even in a light breeze.
If your gates are open patterned iron gates, i.e. gates you can see through, then your options are greater as these can be operated using hydraulic or electromechanical motors that are either 230V or 24V.
What weight and width are your gate leaves?
Every electric gate mechanism has a maximum weight and width of gate leaf that they are able to operate safely and reliably on. These limits are specified by the manufacturer and are calculated by the single gate leaf size.
For example, if your double gates are a total of 4m between the posts and weigh a total of 700kgs then you will need a kit with operating limits of at the very least 350kgs @ 2m per leaf.
In NO circumstances must you ever put a kit on a gate that exceeds the operating limits specified by the manufacturer.
How much will you use your gates each day?
We break down the categories of use to make it straight forward to find a gate kit that will best suit your needs. It is important that your gates are able to function as much as required throughout the day reliably. Each time the gate opens and closes is called a duty cycle. The number of duty cycles per day or hour varies with each operator so there is one to suit any scenario.
Residential electric gate kits – Any kit which is rated for residential use will comfortably be able to open and close (cycle) enough times in a day to allow for normal family usage.
Multi resident properties & offices – Perhaps your home shares a driveway with other houses or you live in a small apartment building. The demands on your gate operator will be greater than on a single dwelling property as more duty cycles are needed per day.
Light commercial – If your gates are going to be used fairly intensively throughout the day and are on the wider side to accommodate larger vehicles then you may well need a gate kit which is rated for light commercial use.
Commercial – Gates on commercial premises often need to cycle continuously throughout the day and also have much wider and larger gates for heavy goods vehicle access. Gate openers which are rated for intensive usage are suitable for commercial / industrial use. Hydraulic operators are usually best as they require less maintenance and are more durable.
Do they need to open quickly?
Sometimes speed matters so each electric gate motor has a different duty cycle speed.
If you live on a main road where there is nowhere safe to pull over when your gates are opening then you need a fast operator. Also, commercial premises need rapid and constant access.
Each operator has a different cycle speed so check in the specification for this information. Some of the motors cycle very quickly especially to overcome these kind of obstacles.