How do you go about making a choice between gate operators?  What criteria are important and what does it really matter how the gates open and close?  Automatic gates and gate operators are examples of technological advances made to better improve the quality of live surrounding us.  Whether the gate is used for home, commercial or industrial use you can guarantee that the main function of the gate is to speed up entering and exiting, improve safety and provide a record of traffic.

The first question you need to answer is what type of gate are you looking for?  Are you looking for a gate that slides open, one that swings, a vertical opening gate or are you looking for a simple barrier gate.  The gate operator that you need will be different depending on the type of gate you choose.

It is also important when evaluating your need for a gate operator unit to determine if you are going to replace your gate or are you adding the automatic gate operator onto and existing unit?  If you are using an existing unit you will want to make sure the gate is operational.  A gate operator can do many things but it cannot fix a faulty gate.

A gate operator needs to be chosen in regards to the gates size also.  Make sure that you know the height and weight of the gate you are intending to operate.  It is not possible to buy a gate operator that is intended for a lightweight barrier gate and use it to operate a full wrought iron swing gate.  The weight will cause damage within the system because of the added stress the weight will put on the inner components.

What direction do you need the gate to open to?  You will need to determine that ahead of time to make sure that the gate operator is purchased to be installed on the intended side.  Obviously if you are looking to have the gate open on the right side you cannot order a gate operator with a right opening arm.

Also, determine the flow of traffic that will enter and exit through the gate.  Are you using the gate in a residential area, for commercial business or industrial commerce?  This will help you when looking at durability and the longevity of the operators you are looking at. The traffic amount will also help you narrow down the type of safety and the amount of security needed.

Another point to determine before you purchase a gate operator will open and close. Do you want to use a card reader or are you most interested in a remote control set up?  The same questions will need to be addressed with closing the gate.  Should it close automatically or do you want it to be closed in the same manner it was open?  For instance, I open my garage door with a remote control and close it with a unit that is wired in to the house.  I need to keep control over the closing of the door in this instance. It is also important to decide if you are going to have to have controlled access upon leaving also.  Some places require you to again access the exit like you did the entrance but others allow for automatic exit based on sensors “seeing” your car.

Knowing the answer to these questions will help you determine exactly what type of gate, gate operator and access control system will fit your need.  Once you determine this your selections will be narrowed down making the shopping and decision a lot less aggravating.