6 Reasons your Electric Gate is Slow
A slow running electric gate is a serious reason for concern since it puts you at a much greater risk of being attacked and/or robbed in your driveway. This is because perpetrators now have a longer window of opportunity to attack you since you’re waiting for a longer period of time in front of your gate for it to open and they have a decent amount of time to follow you in if your gate closes as slowly as it opens.
Your electric gate should open and close at a speed that does not compromise your security by leaving you waiting for longer than is necessary to get into your property and too long to close and lock securely behind your vehicle. That being said, your gate should not open and close so fast as to pose a safety risk to children, people, pets and property.
A variable speed electric gate opener is a good idea since it allows the gate to open slowly, speed up until it is almost fully open and then slow down just before it closes. This reduces a lot of stress on the working parts of an electric gate and increases safety. Remember to always have infrared safety beams installed to prevent anyone or anything getting caught in the gate and being injured or damaged.
Possible Causes for a Slow Running Electric Gate
When your gate motor is installed the gate company technician will have to set the speed at which the electric gate opens and closes. If the technician does set the speed up correctly your gate will be running at an appropriate speed. Gate motors such as the Centurion D5 Evo have very simple digital display controls which allow you to set the speed of the gate yourself; however, older gate motors may be a little more difficult to set up.
If you do not have the correct power settings applied for the weight of your gate, your gate may also be running too slowly. Uneven, up sloping and down sloping terrain must also be accounted for when the power setting is calculated and applied since an up sloping gate path will require more power. You may also have the wrong gate motor and may have to consider replacing it with one that packs enough punch to get the job done quickly, reliably and safely.
Many gate motors are battery driven – meaning that the battery back-up system does more than just keeps your gate running during load shedding – they actually drive the gate. It therefore goes without say that if your battery isn’t charging correctly and is low on power – you may have found the reason for your slow running gate.
If, as above, your electric gate is driven by the battery and you have noticed a decrease in the opening and closing speed of your gate, it may be time to replace your gate motor battery. The unfortunate reality is that most people simply will not notice if their gates are beginning to run slower as this happens gradually. The end result is that they are left with a gate that isn’t working at all and will then have to act quickly to initiate repairs.
If your sliding gate wheels are running incorrectly aligned, damaged or are rusted and not functioning correctly your gate motor may be encountering significant resistance when opening or closing. This not only slows your gate down but will cause a lot of serious wear and tear on your gate motor.
The bottom of your gate may possibly be making contact with the gate track – perhaps because of the roots of a large tree which has grown below. This is surprisingly more common than you’d think and causes the homeowner’s electric gate to slow down and even stop after the gate receives an impact or obstruction signal.
10 Home Security Tips you Need to Know when living in Johannesburg
Home security is big business in South Africa and no one knows that more than the thousands of private security companies, scattered in almost every corner of the country.
From burglar bars for windows, security gates and locks (including maglocks), to alarm systems, motion detectors and electric fencing - homeowners spend thousands of Rands to secure the lives of their families and protect their properties. Although almost every residential property in the country has, at least, a medium-level of security, these measures do not always prove to be effective - particularly in the face of carelessness and a "it won't happen to me" attitude, which is quite common amongst the very few citizens who are lucky enough not to have become victims of crime.
Hyper-vigilance is of the utmost importance and the need to stay informed cannot be overemphasized, as criminals always change their tactics and will likely attack a particular area several times.
There is no better way to secure your home than to have an alarm system installed. This will ensure that if anyone breaks down a door or enters through a window, the alarm will go off and alert your security company or, if not connected to a security company, at least scare them off or alert your neighbors and passersby. Alarms systems can also alert you to the presence of an intruder when you are inside the home and possibly help you prevent a home invasion. Ideally you should be connected to an alarm company and have multiple panic-buttons in your home or mobile panic-buttons for every family member and any workers.
This is one of those tips that you've certainly heard countless of times, yet it's importance leave us no choice but to restate the obvious. Dense bushes and thick foliage surrounding your driveway or entranceway provides hijackers and robbers with the perfect hiding spot to ambush you on your way in or out of your property and must be removed. Optimally, you should have a clear 180 degree view of the area in front of your entrance.
If you have to get out of your car to open and close your entrance gate, then you are certainly providing criminals with a long window of opportunity to attack you in your driveway. Although it may be costly to have your gate automated, it is one of the most basic and critical security features that you can add to your home to reduce the likelihood of an attack. Once installed, a gate motor should give you many years of uninterrupted service and will ensure you get in and out of your home quickly and safely.
Load-shedding is a nuisance and an inconvenience to us, however, to criminals it's an opportunity. If your electric gate does not have a battery back-up system and you need to manually override it from the inside you could be left stuck outside of your gate for a long period of time - a period of time that any opportunistic criminal will take advantage of. Getting out of your car to open the gate will also pose a serious risk. Remember, scheduled load-shedding is known to homeowners and to criminals alike - if you like a battery backup system installed, Gate Repair Services will gladly assist; complete our contact form to have a call centre agent contact you to make arrangements.
In addition to the dangers of thick bushes and foliage, dark driveways and areas around your home are prime hiding spots for criminals. Installing lights in front of your entrance gate and in the front and back areas of your home will not only make it easier for you to spot any suspicious behavior but it will also deter criminals from targeting your particular house -as described by Professor Rudolph Zinn the author of "Home invasions: robbers disclose what you should know". Dark spots around your home will allow criminals the perfect spot to peer in through windows and monitor the activity inside the home. Demand lighting is preferable over standard lights as they can alert you to any movement outside and will help you save on your electric bill.
As mentioned, robbers will always try to establish where the homeowners are in the house and what kind of activity is going on around the property before attacking. A useful trick to deter criminals is to plant short cacti around your perimeter walls or fencing and under ground floor windows to deter criminals from looking over walls or peering into windows. This is particularly helpful for homes where the walls are solid and the house cannot be seen from the street. For added security, plant cacti around the inner perimeter of your house as well.
Most burglaries happen during the day when people are at work and children are at school - so ensure that you lock-up every door and window in the house and that you arm your alarm and all other security systems before leaving for work. If children are the last to leave the home in the mornings make sure that you repeatedly go through a lock-down routine with them so that the process becomes second nature. If the child is young, you should consider adjusting schedules or making alternative arrangements.
Most homes have very high security on their lower-level and little to no security on their second story windows and balconies because many people are of the false belief that the height will provide them with the security they need. Criminals can easily find a way to climb up onto your upstairs balcony or to climb through an unguarded window and this is one of their most common entry-points. You must install burglar bars on upstairs windows and have security gates or trellidors installed. You should also have magnet sensors installed on all balcony doors and windows.
Most burglars don't carry along house-breaking equipment as most owners have these tools readily available for them. They will usually enter a shed or garage and use the tools found there to break into your home. It is for this reason that it is absolutely crucial to secure your tools and garage and make it just as hard for criminals to access these areas as it is to access your home. Ladders and chairs should be packed away securely and, if possible, placed in a very hard to reach area of your garage.
Having a visible surveillance system installed above your gate and by the front and/or back of your house will surely deter criminals by making your home much less appealing than the next. Even if your video surveillance system isn't working or is fake, it's mere presence will certainly increase your home security. Just as with video surveillance systems, security signs can also improve your security level by making criminals aware that your home has certain security features in place. This includes signs which point out the danger of an electric fence, security company signs such as ADT and Chubb, community policing signs, beware of the dog and other such signs.
Maglock installation on paedestrian gates
Mag lock for a steel gate
The above video shows before and after clips of a mag lock that was installed by Gate Repair Services on a metal swing gate. The wires were run along the inside of the metal gate frame. Upon exiting the metal gate frame the wires run through stainless steel tubing which cannot be cut. This prevents anyone from being able to cut the wires and, due to the flexibility of the tubing, ensures the maglock remains secure whether in the fully open or fully closed position. The Centurion magnetic lock system was used. This particular product can withstand a force of about 600kgs.
How does a mag lock work?
A magnetic lock is made up of two main components – an electromagnet which is fitted to one side of the swing gate and an armature plate which is fitted to the other side. A mag lock requires an electric current in order to work – this is achieved through hardwiring that is usually run along the inside of the swing gate’s frame. Stainless steel tubing then secures the wires once they exit the frame.
When the electromagnet is energized it allows an attraction to be created between the two components. In order to open the gate a release button is pushed and the current is interrupted. This interruption typically lasts between 15 and 30 seconds.
How strong is an electromagnetic lock?
Mag-locks are very strong and can withstand a force of up to 600kg however, for residential purposes the 300kg and 400kg force systems are typically used. They can be fitted on a variety of door types and materials including metal, glass and wood and can be used for indoor applications as well.
Fail safe v fail secure
If the electromagnetic lock unlocks when there is a power failure it is usually referred to as fail safe. This option is not viable for outdoor applications unless a battery backup system is incorporated. If the mag lock locks securely during a power failure it is usually referred to as fail secure. For added security, we can install a unique key switch such as in the below image. This ensures that should you experience a prolonged power failure you can still open and close your gate securely using the key switch.
Unique key switch
Where can a mag lock be installed?
Typically magnetic locks are used for busy complexes, businesses, storerooms and other commercial applications however, they can also add significant additional security to swing gates in residential settings provided that the mag lock is fail secure or, in the case of fail safe locks, that a battery backup is installed.
Magnetic lock prices
The cost of a magnetic lock system will depend on the strength and quality of the particular product. Gate Repair Services recommend the Centurion maglock which is sealed with resin which ensures components are secured and protected from the elements. This device is solid and reliable.
If you’re looking to have a mag lock installed at your residence or business Gate Repair Services can offer you a quick and professional service. Simply fill in our contact form and one of our call centre agents will call you to access your needs, provide you with a quote and arrange for a technician to come out and install the magnetic lock.