How To Choose A Gate Opener

When choosing a gate operator, it's a good idea to keep the following questions in mind.

1. What type of gate do you need to operate? Automatic operators are not recommended for pedestrian traffic.
Slide Gate - Is it cantilever? Overhead? V-groove track? Roller? Enclosed track gate?
Swing Gate - What type of gate material? Is wind a factor?
Barrier Gate - What type of arm? Wood? Aluminum?

2. Is the gate new or existing?
If the installation is on an existing gate, open and close it manually to assure a smooth operation. Remember, gate operators do not correct gate problems. Existing gates that are to be automated must meet the ASTM F-2200 standard for gate construction. Roller covers? Pinch points protected? Slide gates screened to 2.25”?

3. What is the length of the gate? Height? Weight? Does it move freely?

4. Will the operator be subjected to prolong below freezing temperatures? Consider adding a heater or cold weather package.

5. Single or dual gate operation?
Up to two Linear Gate operators can be networked together to work as a pair in a dual gate installation and an LRA controller can run two arms (second sold separately).

6. How many cycles will the gate open and close per day?
High duty cycle requires a heavy duty gate operator. Consider variable speed operators for high cycle locations.

7. What voltage and phase are required for the gate to operate?
This is generally dependant on what voltage is available at the site. Linear recommends the highest voltage available at the site and 3 phase power if available.
a. 120V 1ph b. 208V 1ph c. 230V 1ph d. 208V 3ph e. 230V 3ph f. 460V 3ph

8. How will the gate operator be physically installed?
Some operators are designed to be pad mounted, while others are post mounted. Kits are available to post mount a pad mount operator and pad mount a post mount operator.

9. How will the gate operate in the event of a power failure?
All Linear operators have a manual release device standard, some models offer built in battery backup, and some models can operate from an optional external battery backup unit. Some local codes require the use of battery backup.

10. How will the gate be opened for vehicle entry? More often than not, the answer is access control accessories. Consider the requirements for residents and guests, as well as emergency vehicles.
a. Key switch
b. Keypad
c. Radio control
d. Telephone Entry System
e. Intercom
f. SOS – Emergency Vehicle Sensor
g. Don’t forget a gooseneck stand to mount access control devices

11. How will the gate close after entry into the property?
Use of the built-in auto close timer is the most common method. This requires the use of vehicle detectors (loop detectors) to prevent the gate from automatically closing on a vehicle.

12. How will the gate be opened for exiting vehicles?
Use of an automatic exit vehicle detector (free exit loop) is the most common method. Most vehicle detectors are plug-in style; others need to be wired in. Loop wire kits or pre-formed loops are part of these systems and can be sold with the operator.