Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

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DTalos
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Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

Post by DTalos »

Regarding a gated vehicle entry for a residential community, there are often two mechanical gate operators (one for the entrance gate and one for the exit gate) and they are either slide or swing. Warranty is usually about 5 years on them, but these particular units have been in place for 20 years. If it costs $10,000 to replace both swing gate operators, is this an item that is worth pre-emptively replacing vs spending $125 for each service call plus parts each time they malfunction? At what $$ amount do you stop making repairs ($2000, $3000, etc.) that each time are a sunk cost if a new unit is purchased. These operators are like a car and have a lot of parts in them. And like a car, one can go years without a problem or have 3 problems in 3 months.
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snackdog
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Re: Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

Post by snackdog »

They should not have a lot of parts in them like a car. They should have a simple electrical motor which drives a gear which swings the gate arms.

How often is yours breaking and what does the technician say is the cause? Has the operator or gate ever been struck by a car and possibly damaged or misaligned?

20 years is old. If they broken a lot I would replace those with Liftmaster commercial gate operators for around $3500/each (part only). Very reliable and low/ to no maintenance aside from occasional lube.
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DTalos
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Re: Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

Post by DTalos »

snackdog wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 8:50 am They should not have a lot of parts in them like a car. They should have a simple electrical motor which drives a gear which swings the gate arms.

How often is yours breaking and what does the technician say is the cause? Has the operator or gate ever been struck by a car and possibly damaged or misaligned?

20 years is old. If they broken a lot I would replace those with Liftmaster commercial gate operators for around $3500/each (part only). Very reliable and low/ to no maintenance aside from occasional lube.
From my non mechanical bias and perspective, most mechanical things look complicated LOL.

Have the old version of the Liftmaster, which is the Elite brand from 20 years ago. In the last three years, have replaced drive belts, battery backups, limit switches and wiring harnesses. Occasionally, drivers run into the gate and flee, causing the swing arm to become dislodged. Most service calls are due to the gate remaining stuck open.
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snackdog
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Re: Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

Post by snackdog »

DTalos wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 9:26 am
...

Have the old version of the Liftmaster, which is the Elite brand from 20 years ago. In the last three years, have replaced drive belts, battery backups, limit switches and wiring harnesses. Occasionally, drivers run into the gate and flee, causing the swing arm to become dislodged. Most service calls are due to the gate remaining stuck open.
Belts and battery are wear items which will need periodic replacement. Switches and wiring are not but perhaps corroded.

Most service calls are a stuck open gate - due to what? People running into it?
chemocean
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Re: Vehicle Swing Gate Operators Repair or Replace?

Post by chemocean »

DTalos wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 3:17 am Regarding a gated vehicle entry for a residential community, there are often two mechanical gate operators (one for the entrance gate and one for the exit gate) and they are either slide or swing. Warranty is usually about 5 years on them, but these particular units have been in place for 20 years. If it costs $10,000 to replace both swing gate operators, is this an item that is worth pre-emptively replacing vs spending $125 for each service call plus parts each time they malfunction? At what $$ amount do you stop making repairs ($2000, $3000, etc.) that each time are a sunk cost if a new unit is purchased. These operators are like a car and have a lot of parts in them. And like a car, one can go years without a problem or have 3 problems in 3 months.
Misuse of the gate can cause wear on the motors. We have been told that the proper technique to open the gate in a power outage is to take the lid off the motor (operator) and use the clamp to disconnect the swing gate from the motor. Then swing the gates open. Then connect the clamp when power comes off.
The control of gate openings by a "gatemaster" who controls the scheduling of the gate openings by computer is essential. Turning the power to the system for unofficial gate openings can cause motor wear.
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