Automatic Driveway Gates: Frequently Asked Questions
Installing Automatic Driveway Gates is an investment in your property. So understandably our customers have a range of questions before making a purchase. In our world where security is gaining priority, more and more of us realise that having an automated electric gate is more affordable and beneficial than ever.
With over 25 years experience in offering comprehensive automated gate solutions, North East Automation have put together a quick guide to electric gates. If your question is not listed below or if you'd like more information, please don't hesitate to give us a call or use the contact form to forward your enquiry.
Why should I have automatic gates?
You might be surprised to learn that 90% of manual gates are never shut- which might as well be not having a gate at all. This is mainly due to the inconvenience of getting out of the vehicle to operate the gate, especially in weather conditions which are less than ideal. An automatic gate is an extremely effective way to secure your property and family. All with the added convenience of being able to operate it remotely from the comfort of your vehicle.
Automated electric gates are no longer a luxury item which you only see on stately country manors. They are more affordable than ever, and more of us are realising the benefits. Not only are they fantastic in protecting your house and deterring unwanted visitors, but they are also ideal for making a lasting impression on your guests.
How much does an electric gate cost?
This question is one we are asked the most often. Without context, it is, in essence, the same question as "how long is a piece of string?". There are several deciding factors which can alter the cost of the entire project, all with varying degrees of influence.
One of the most influential factors is the layout and size of the site. This will likely determine the scale of the project and any potential restrictions. If possible, we will aim to conduct a site visit before we provide any estimated costings. During this initial meeting we will recommend the best gate style and automation mechanism based on your requirements. This is all to help improve the accuracy of our quotes and give a clear indication on what is involved in the project ahead.
If required, we can assess your access requirements and highlight any key areas you'd like to change. For commercial clients with existing access control systems, our gates can be integrated to operate with your existing system.
Do you install access control systems?
The short and simple answer is, yes we do. North East Automation have over 25 years experience in providing security access control solutions to domestic and commercial clients across the North East. We have worked on sites of all sizes and nature, including installing security bollards and barriers for commercial and industrial sites for vehicular access control.
Because of our experience, you can count on us to provide professional advice and guidance on which access control systems are best suited for your requirements. We will identify your specifications during the initial consultations, including the number of entrances and how many personnel will require access on a regular basis etc.
Thanks to the advances in technology, there is now a vast range of access control options available. You can have audio/video intercommunication with your visitor, which allows you to confirm their identity before granting access to your property. Handheld remotes are often the choice for domestic clients which enables them to operate the gate without leaving the comfort of the vehicle. For commercial clients, keyfobs/keycards, pin pads or even fingerprint recognition is the more preferred option.
Do you have a showroom?
We do have a showroom in South Shields where potential clients can view demonstrations of our different gate styles and operation methods. You can additionally test out different access control systems to make sure you are 100% happy with your choice. Because it's conveniently close to our in-house manufacturing facility, you can also see the variety and quality of the gates available.
The viewing of the showroom is by appointment only so we can dedicate maximum personal attention during your visit.
Is your installation team outsourced?
North East Automation are proud to say that all of our services, from the design, manufacture, installation and maintenance are carried out by our experienced in-house engineers. Our team are continuously trained to the highest industry standard with all necessary qualifications to ensure we are compliant with current law and legislation.
By proving a one-stop solution, we can offer our customers a competitive quote. Having an in-house solution to handle the entire projects means we can minimise any potential delays in the project caused by communication and relying on other contractors to be on schedule. It also means we can manage the overall process of the project and provide a comprehensive service.
What automation options do you offer?
At North East Automation we offer 2 styles of automation- swing or sliding gates. They each have their advantages and disadvantages and suitability requirements. As you might expect, swing gates require a substantial amount of room behind the gate to ensure smooth operation, which may not be feasible depending on the layout and size of the property. Unless you are extremely determined about what style gate you would like, we would always make recommendations based on your property and budget.
We offer two operation mechanisms which are likewise situational. While hydraulic systems are more expensive, they are quieter in operation and provides more resistance to high wind forces. Concerning power output and working life, hydraulic systems are in a slight advantage thanks to the advance in technology. In spite of the above, electro-mechanical mechanisms are just as reliable for the long term. If you are lucky to be in the shelter of the prevailing wind and don't mind the gate making slightly more noise when it operates, then this is the option for you. It's more economical and compatible with all of our gates.
What is your service area?
Based centrally in South Shields, our comprehensive gate services are available to domestic and commercial clients across the North East. This includes Newcastle, Darlington, Durham, Northumberland and beyond. If you are interested in our services, please don't hesitate to give us a call on 01914 563399 to find out more.
If I choose a template design, will it fit my property?
Because all of our gates are manufactured in-house to order, you can always expect a secure and snug fit to your property. This applies to the gates from our template catalogue. During the initial site meeting, we will take measurements and photographs of your entrances and use this information to create a visual render of how you gate might look in-situ. This also helps you determine which style of gate you'd like to install and how they complement and synergise with existing features.
Our in-house manufacturing facility means that our customers can create a bespoke design if they wish to express their creativity. Alternatively, our specialist designer can work with you to add a personal touch based on an existing template. The style of your gate- whether its metal, wooden or a combination, can be explored at this stage.
What do I do if there is a power failure?
It's a common misconception that automated gates will entrap you in your own home in the case of a power failure. While it's true that the gate cannot be operated remotely or mechanically unless there is a backup power supply, all of our gates are installed with a manual override in case of emergencies. You will be able to operate the gate manually for access, although as expected it may be more cumbersome than your typical garden gate.
Our installation engineers will always demonstrate how to activate the emergency manual override in case of a power failure. We will also show you how to re-connect the electric operation once power has been restored.
If the gate has stopped working independently, we understand the frustration and inconvenience this can cause. Our emergency call-out technicians are available 24/7. We will aim to arrive on site within 24 hours and bring all necessary equipment to diagnose and resolve the fault in a single visit and minimise disruption.
How often do I need to service my gate?
Not only is regular servicing good practice to ensure optimal performance and prolong the working life of your gate, but it's also a legal requirement. As compliant providers and installers of automated electric gate systems, we have a responsibility to inform you that it's mandatory to have your gate serviced on a regular interval by a suitably qualified engineer and keeping a proper record.
There are a lot of moving parts in an electric gate system, and most are at the mercy of the weather. As expected this can lead to wear and tear over time, especially if the gate is frequently operated such as those on commercial properties. The legal requirement dictates that an electric gate is serviced at intervals no longer than 12 months. At North East Automation our installed gates are issued with one year warranty guarantee, but the gate must be maintained within 12 months for the second year to be valid.
We offer a range of maintenance and service packages, including bespoke packages to suit the varying needs of different customers. For heavy-use gates which operate up to 150 times a day, we would recommend making three maintenance trips a year to ensure the gate performs optimally. During our visits we will thoroughly inspect all the parts and access track, clearing any obstructions and repairing any faulty components as necessary. A detailed log will be issued for record-keeping, and any necessary paperwork will be provided.
Can you service my gate even if you didn't install it?
Our maintenance packages are available for domestic and commercial clients across Newcastle, Durham, Sunderland and the North East of England.
If your gate were not installed by our company, we would need to conduct a site survey to examine the specifications of the gate and any associated access control systems. Any paperwork such as previous service history should be provided. Based on the bespoke condition and requirements of the gate, we will then make recommendations on how often the gate should be serviced.
Can you repair my gate even if you didn't install it?
Our service and repair engineers are available to from Monday-Friday, 9-5 to offer our reliable repair services across the North East. In the case of an emergency, we offer a 24-hour call-out service to resolve any emergency situations.
If you need any further information about automatic driveway gates call 01914 563399 to discuss your requirements.
If you have taken out one of our maintenance packages, some of the cost such as labour will be subsidised by the contract. However, this doesn't include any cost of out-of-warranty replacement parts or accidental/malicious damage to the gate.