Almost three years ago we posted an article about winter maintenance checks for automated gates. Every year around this time, it becomes one of our most clicked articles. We thought it would be a good time to revisit that article and make some updates to it based on developments over the past three years.
So, without any further ado, here is your 2018 Automatic Gate Winter Checklist.
The winter months can be depressing enough, with their extended hours of darkness. On top of fewer daylight hours, there are challenging road conditions thanks to dead leaves, rain, ice, and snow, which call for grit spreading to keep us safe on the roads.
All these factors can reduce the reliability of your automatic gate operation. But simple housekeeping checks in autumn and winter will help keep things running smoothly.
Automatic Gate Winter Checks
1. Visual & Operational Checks
- Check that the path of the gate movement is free and clear of leaves and debris. If there is snow, this should be cleared from the path to ensure reliable operation.
- Should you have underground operators, you should ensure these are draining efficiently. Operating the system a few times, especially if the temperature has been below freezing, will warm the motors and should also alert you to any frozen or binding mechanisms. If there aren’t any, it keeps the inner gears and linkages free and makes sure the mechanism stays moving freely.
- Check for any signs of wear or damage on the gate paying attention to hinges, rollers, any exposed wiring, etc. These should be adequately greased to avoid freezing and thus reduce friction. (If damaged contact your gate maintenance provider immediately).
- Check the operation of the photocells by blocking them during an initiation of the gate movement. The gate should not close if the photocell is blocked.
- Having confirmed operation, wipe the photocells and reflectors (if present) with a damp cloth, removing any dirt that may have built up over a period. Once cleaned, check again for correct operation.
3. Safety Devices
- If the gate is fitted with safety devices such as safety edges, mechanical hinge protectors or meshing, check these are still seated/fixed securely and that there are no signs of physical damage. To test these, you can activate them during operation to ensure the gate reacts as it should. If unsure in any way, we recommend contacting your gate maintenance provider.
- By following these simple steps, you should enjoy longer, trouble-free operation of your automatic gate.
4. Regular maintenance and servicing
One final word of caution: these checks are no substitution for regular servicing and maintenance of your gate system. Servicing should take place every six months, or at least once a year, depending on usage. A regular professional service of your gate system should prevent premature failure and costly repairs in the future.
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