How To Maintain Your Automatic Gates
In today’s modern world, it’s becoming more and more common to see technology and machinery incorporated into our homes and businesses. Whether it’s an OLED television for your living room or a smart thermostat to keep your home or office temperate, tech is truly changing how we live. However, with all these innovations on the inside, it can be easy to forget about what can be added to the outside.
Automatic gates are becoming a mainstay for a lot of buildings throughout the country. Offering a range of benefits regarding security and ease of use whilst remaining as a stylish addition to your home, an automatic gate is a secure and reliable investment.
However, although you can expect to gain a host of benefits from installing one, it is important to stay on top of your automatic gate system’s maintenance to ensure that they work at optimum efficiency. If not, they could be prone to wear and tear and could, in turn, be exploited by would-be criminals trying to access your premises.
At South West Garage Doors, we know a thing or two about installing and maintaining automatic gates and garage doors, which is why we’ve put together this handy guide on how to properly maintain your investment so you’ll never have to worry about it again.
Inspect your automatic gate system
One of the first places to start when thinking about automatic gate maintenance is to simply spend time inspecting the gate both whilst stationary and in operation. The best way to do this is to have a set checklist of specific components to look at so that you cover all of the important bits during the inspection.
Start by checking the gate opener, metal racks, the drive belt, bolts and bearings etc. and simply look for any inconsistencies – it can also be a good idea to listen out for any peculiar noises such as grinding as this can be an underlying issue.
If you do find anything that seems faulty or broken, it is imperative to not make any in-depth fixes yourself. An automatic gate can be extremely dangerous if faulty and by attempting a fix without the specialist knowledge, you are putting yourself at risk.
After carrying out an inspection, it is likely that you’ve noticed it could do with a clean. As your gate is outside and at the mercy of the elements, it’s not uncommon for dirt and grime to build up. A comprehensive clean not only keeps your gate looking sleek and stylish but it can also clear away any dirt that could potentially damage the components of the gate. Before starting any kind of maintenance work, it is essential to ensure that the gate is completely switched off to stop any accidents from occurring.
If the gate is wooden, you’ll need to remember to paint or oil it in order to help it withstand the elements better. Other than that, spend time washing it down with a sponge and water whilst ensuring not to get any of the electronic components, such as the gate opener, wet.
Maintain the electronics
Although it’s unwise to carry out any in-depth repairs or maintenance on the electronic components of your automatic gate, it is still a good idea to carry out delicate cleaning methods to clear out any debris that could affect them.
Try not to use any abrasive cleaning methods and definitely keep moisture away from the electronics. Your best bet is to use a dry cloth to remove the dirt you can get to and use an air canister to get at the places you can’t.
Properly oiling the moving components
Your gate needs to be able to move properly which means that it relies on being properly lubricated. A gate that isn’t sufficiently lubricated will struggle to move smoothly and has the potential to damage the mechanisms needed in operation. The motor is a common victim of improperly oiled gates is the opener as it has the tendency to overheat due to the increased friction.
With this in mind, it’s important to oil the various moving components of your gate every six months to ensure proper movement. The main elements to focus on are the chain, roller, pulley, hinge and the various screws involved in operation. If your unit is a swing gate, it will also have an internal chain that you will also need to be oiled regularly.
It can also be useful to mention what type of lubricant works best for keeping your gate working properly. Rather than using conventional grease, which can gum up the gate’s parts, or oil, which has the tendency to leave unsightly stains if spilt, we would advise using white lithium grease. A durable substance that provides superior friction without running or staining, white lithium is by far the best product for the job.
Always check the auto-reverse
Automatic gates are really beneficial to any home or business they’re installed at. However, they can be extremely dangerous if malfunctioning, especially if the auto-reverse feature isn’t working as it should. Therefore, it is vital that you make comprehensive checks every month to minimise the risk of injury.
Luckily, checking to see that the auto-reverse feature is working properly is a relatively simple process only requiring something to block the gate when in operation. A common item is a piece of timber laid out flat.
Put the timber in the way of the gate and open it, as soon as the gate hits the timber, it should recognise it as an obstruction and reverse. If this doesn’t happen, the auto-reverse feature isn’t working properly and needs to be fixed as soon as possible.
Have a specialist technician on hand to help
When it comes to maintaining your automatic gate, nothing quite compares to having a qualified technician on call in case of a fault. Of course, carrying out the above checks and maintenance processes regularly will help to minimise the chance of a fault occurring, however, sometimes your gate can run into problems no matter how well you tend to them.
With this in mind, having an annual service by a trained professional can help to give you peace of mind that your gate is working efficiently and, more importantly, safely. It is likely that whoever you employed to install your gate will have the best knowledge on how to both maintain and repair your investment.
South West Garage Doors – Offering industry-leading automated access solutions
Adding an automatic gate to your premises can really change how your building operates for the better. Offering a high level of security and privacy whilst being a sleek and stylish addition to your home or business, automatic gates are a sound investment for any property.
However, it is equally important to work with a qualified specialist within the industry. Here at South West Garage Doors, we have been supplying countless happy customers with our range of automatic gates, garage doors and other access solutions both in Plymouth and throughout Cornwall.
Whether you’re looking for a stylish gate for your home or an industrial strength security door to protect your company’s most important assets on site, our team of qualified professionals are on hand to ensure the installation process is both efficient and comprehensive.
For more information on our wide range of services, get in touch with a member of our team today at one of our stores and we’ll be happy to discuss your requirements or visit our websiteto learn more.