All about Automating Gates

Dec 28, 2020

All about Automating Gates

If you’re looking to make opening your gates at home more convenient, then you may want to consider automating your gates. Having an electric gate system at home is an added security layer for your front garden, as it deters would-be thieves from attempting a break-in.

Also, electric gates are aesthetically pleasing and add an element of style to your front garden. If you already have a gate system at home that you manually operate, automating it is an excellent option as it means you don’t have to get in and out of your car every time you pull into your drive. Having an automatic gates also reduces the worry of leaving your gates open, as a simple click of a button ensures the gates close.

In this post, we’re going to look at how you can automate your existing driveway gates to save you time and make your driveway gates more convenient.

Can I automate my current driveway gates?

Yes, you can. When people think about installing electric gates at their property, they often believe they need to replace their current gates with a new automated gate system. Although you can opt for this if you want a brand-new system, it’s unnecessary to automate your gates, as most existing gates can be modified and motorised with gate openers.

Having said that, don’t be tempted to DIY! Clients have shared stories with us in the past, where they have found an inexpensive motorised gate mechanism and hired an electrician to install it for them. While this can work in some cases, the majority of the time, the improvised system will last for a couple of weeks before needing repair. What’s more, you can actually cause significant damage to your gates if the job isn’t completed to the highest standard, and the gate may not even meet the required legal standards to be operational.

If you would like to automate your current garden gates, then it’s best to speak to an experienced industry expert to help you with this. At adfabs Automated Gates, we have sixty years of combined experience working with automated gates and are excellently placed to advise you on all of your electric gate needs.

What options are available to me for automating my gates?

If you’ve decided that you wish to go ahead with automating your home gates, then the good news is that the majority of gates can be automated using one of three techniques, depending on the gate’s design and the landscape of your garden. When deciding upon the best way to automate your gate, you need to consider several factors, but this is something that we can help you with.

With sliding gates, the main factor to consider is its weight, so you need to choose an appropriate motor capable of moving the gate. Moreover, it would help if you considered your driveway gradient, as electric gates work best when the driveway is level. Let’s take a look at three different methods of automating your garden gate.

Underground motors

Perhaps the most popular method of automating gates is the use of an underground motor. This is undoubtedly the most aesthetically pleasing way of creating an electric gate system, as the motors are encased in metal buried below the surface. Underground motors are a standard feature on many electric gate systems because they are a lot harder to tamper with or steal, making them a popular choice with those that are security conscious. Having said that, an underground system is more expensive to install and maintain due to the additional labour associated with the installation.

While a popular choice because the motors are underground, it’s not advisable to go with this approach if your driveway is often submerged in water or if your front garden is prone to flooding. For underground motors to work, adequate drainage needs to be in place as water will affect the motors’ operation and will even invalidate the warranty of the gate. As you can see from option number one, deciding upon which system to used to automate your gates is not a choice to be made lightly!

Above ground motors

Above ground motors work in the same way as underground motors; they’re just positioned above the surface. If you live in a property prone to flooding, then an above-ground motor is a much better choice for your electric gate. Having an above-ground motor also has the added benefit of easier access for engineers who come to service or repair your gate in the future.

The material from which your gate is hung plays an essential role in deciding whether you can install above-ground motors. For example, if brick piers are used to hang your current gate, it may not be possible to use an above-ground motor to automate your gate unless the gates are rear-mounted with brickwork. Again, this is something one of our experienced and friendly technicians can assist you with.

Articulated arms

Of the three options listed, installing articulated arms to your gate is perhaps the most cost-effective solution. Articulated arms are easy for a skilled electrician to fit, and they are an ideal option for gates that have been hung from brickwork as opposed to timber. Because of the gate motor’s scissor action, articulated arms tend to be a little more dangerous than the underground and above-ground motor. However, it’s still a proficient way in which to automate your current gates.

Conclusion: How can I automate my driveway gates? 

As explored in this post, automating your driveway gates is a relatively straightforward process for a skilled and experienced electrician to carry out. We have shared with you the three most common ways of turning your manually operated gates into an electrical gate system, and you should think carefully about which method works best for you, depending on the landscape and design of your garden and current gate system.

If you’re looking for a company to automate your gate that offers a personal service and is fully certified, contact us now for a free no-obligation quote, and one of our friendly team members will be in touch to discuss the options for your new home electric gate system.

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Reference video: The 5bestpro