Whether you have an automatic or a manual driveway gate, eventually it will need some kind of repair, service or maintenance. A professionally installed driveway gate is made to be durable, and should last a long time, sometimes problems, like mechanical failures, vehicle or weather damage, and normal wear and tear will occur.
To avoid compromising the safety and security of your home and family, and reduce the cost of repairs, follow this guide to identify common causes of gate failure and when you need to call a professional gate repair technician.
The difference in driveway gate repairs
Driveway gates can be as unique as the properties on which they are installed. While you can find stock designs and prefabricated gates at the big box retailers, sometimes a custom driveway gate is needed due to landscaping, the shape and size of a driveway, or even your preference in style and design.
The complexity of types of repairs you may need depends on the type of gate you have installed.
A manual gates does uses simple mechanics to open and close it, like rolling along a track or opening on hinges like any other gate or door.
Automatic (electronic) driveway gates are a little more complex, depending on the nature of the repair and the other accessories built-in as part of the operation, like vehicle detection systems, keyless entry, computer controlled systems, wiring, hydraulics, and more.
Repair and maintenance is inevitable for any driveway gate
Regardless of the materials, design, type, or size of the driveway gate you have installed, at some point you will need some kind of repair service. While quality, professionally installed driveway gates require little to no maintenance there are still problems that may arise.
Normal wear and tear that comes from standard operation eventually results in repairs needed to the tracks, hinges, latches or other elements, but there are other causes for driveway gate service and repair.
Common causes of driveway gate failure
Harsh weather or weather damage – Although most driveway gates are very durable, extreme weather can cause weakened or damaged parts. This can come from downed trees and branches, lightning strikes, high winds, debris, etc.
Improper use – Any use of a gate outside of its intended purpose can lead to stress of the mechanical and electronic systems causing premature failure and damage.
Uncommon conditions or events – Repairs may be necessary when accidents or damage occur from things like vehicle collision or natural disasters like earthquakes or fires.
Electrical failure – With automatic gates a number of electronic systems can fail, like the wiring, electrical connections, maglocks, and other accessories such as keypads and sensor bars. To make sure these safety systems do not fail, it is important that you monitor them.
How to tell when your driveway gate needs repair service
With all the possibilities that can cause gate failure it is important for you to know the signs that could indicate a need for maintenance and repair. If you spot any of the following issues you should reach out to a professional gate installation and repair company to inspect your driveway gate as quickly as possible.
Grinding or grating sounds when the gate is opening or closing
Latch failure, for example the gate does not close completely
Misalignment of gates to one another
Cracks, breaks, or visible structural issues
Lack of response in automatic gate operation when opening or closing
Resistance when opening or closing a gate
Sensors failing to detect vehicles, or safety sensors not halting operation when motion is detected while closing
Driveway gate latches but does not lock (such as maglock failure)
Gate won’t stay closed (swings or rolls open on its own)
Obvious electrical or operational issues with automatic gates such as the gate opening and closing on its own
Dings, dents, and weathered appearance
Why choose a professional for gate repair services?
A properly installed driveway gate should give a homeowner or business very few problems. Sadly, not all contractors are the same and some may cut corners during installation or when ordering parts.
Even manual driveway gates can be complicated to install correctly and require experience and skill for installation. The same applies to repairs.
Both manual and electric driveway gates use heavy materials, with many gates weighing several hundred pounds. Trying to repair it yourself, or hiring an unskilled contractor, could result in additional damage including injury to yourself or others. You could also see abnormal wear and tear result from improper installation.
More risks could be involved if you try to repair an automatic gate yourself due to the electrical components involved. These types of gates should only be repaired by a certified, professional technician.
When you work with a professional, skilled driveway gate installation and repair contractor you can be assured that the service and parts are guaranteed, the proper parts will be used, and the contractor won’t take shortcuts to get the job done quickly.
A professional repair service is a smart investment that will save you time and money because your gate will be fixed right the first time, and your driveway gate will last you for years to come.
Tips for choosing the right gate repair specialist
- Ask your friends, family and neighbors for recommendations
- Check references from past customers to see if they were happy with their repairs or installation.
- Find out how long the company has been in business.
- Is the technician asking questions and actually inspecting all of the gate’s components?
- Do they offer a service guarantee that includes replacement parts?
- Are the options they offer you realistic, or are they suggesting more work than what is needed?
- If the technician’s recommendations don’t seem realistic, be sure to get a second opinion.
- Can they do the work in a reasonable amount of time?
- Will the work be subcontracted?
Finding the Right Gate Repair Company
It is worth the time to do a little research when looking for a driveway gate repair company. A little time now can save you hundreds of dollars later. By choosing the right company for the job you can feel comfortable knowing the best parts are being used and that the work is guaranteed so if something goes wrong the contractor will take care of the problem for you.