Automated gates, like all things mechanical, need regular maintenance for it to last longer, work reliably and consistently and to ensure it operates safely. Depending on the type of automated gate you have acquired for your residential or commercial property, maintaining it should be fairly easy as long as you follow instructions for its maintenance that should be included in the product. There are certain procedures that may need the help of a professional but the average property owner can carry out the tips listed below.
Do visual inspection regularly.
- Check your sliding gate regularly. Individually check the gate opener, metal racks, chain-belt or drive belt, dents in panels, electrical connections, rollers and bearings etc.
- Check that all bolts are tightly screwed or held in place. If there are loose bolts holding springs or cables, do not touch them as they might break when you try to tighten them. Call a maintenance service technician.
- Look for visible signs of wear or damage in pivot points, bearings and bushes.
- If your sliding gate is made of wood, check if wooden components need to repainted or stained/oiled. Weathered wood have higher chances of having irreparable damage so make sure to use the recommended or the best quality paint or stain available.
Be proactive when it comes to rust prevention.
Dirt and dust accumulation coupled with exposure to extremes in weather conditions can lead to rusting. Be vigilant in looking for signs of rusting on your automated gate’s metal parts.
Rust, in its early stages, can be removed by simply washing your sliding gate with a mild household detergent. If rust is already extreme, scrubbing affected parts or areas with sandpaper usually does the trick.
Keep your automated gate clean.
Washing and waxing your gate once a year (or in wooden gates, painted or oiled) will go a long way towards keeping it looking new and beautiful for a long time. It is also a less expensive option than to have it refurbished – sandblasted, powder coated after having it removed then re-hung – once its finish has faded, rusted or tarnished.
Just make sure to avoid getting water into the door opener. This will get damaged if allowed to get wet.
Lubricate important parts.
It is recommended that you lubricate parts every six months with the correct or recommended lubricant. Usually the parts that need lubrication are those that are responsible for moving the gates automatically – these are the chain, roller, pulley, hinge and various screws. Your automated gate needs a friction-free surface to ensure safe operation and prevent wear and tear of its parts.
Usually, swing gates and slide gates have internal chains that should be lubricated.
Check the auto reverse function of automated gates once a month.
The International Door Association recommends that the auto reverse function of automated gates be tested monthly. If you are a homeowner, you can do this yourself by placing a length of 100mm x 50mm timber flat on the floor (50mm high) in the centre of the doorway, where the door closes, and allowing the door to close on top of the timber. If it is working correctly, when the door strikes the timber on the floor, the door opener will recognize the timber as an obstruction and stop and reverse the door back to the open position.
If it hasn’t stopped and reversed, the door and/or opener need urgent professional attention. Turn the power point to the opener off, and do not use the door until it has been repaired. Advise other members of your household that the door is unsafe and must not be used.
The longevity and performance of your automated gate system partially depends on how much you care for it. Conversely, your ability and willingness to maintain it should be factored in when you are deciding between a lower-end or higher-end automated gate system. It is also ideal to go with a system provider that has competent, reliable and qualified service technicians that you can call whenever there are problems with their product.
We here at Gate Automation Systems offer maintenance programs that are designed to provide scheduled service for all your automated access control equipment. Learn more about our Maintenance Programs. We also provide Breakdown Service for the most complex problems that can arise with your gated entry and access control system.