How To Troubleshoot An Automatic Gate That Doesn’t Fully Close

Automatic gates are a great way to secure your property; however, it can be extremely frustrating when they don’t function as intended. If your automatic sliding or cantilever gate won’t close all the way, here are a few things you can do before calling a professional.

Sliding Vs Cantilever Gates

Traditional sliding gates slide along a bottom track. However, cantilever gates are trackless. They’re held above the ground and move back and forth via rollers running along the top and inside the gate with wheels attached to post-mounted rollers.

Sliding and cantilever gates are great for driveways with limited space. They stow neatly away alongside the gate and don’t require clearance to swing open. This feature also makes them suitable for large openings.

sliding gate is stuck open

Troubleshooting: Physical Issues

Like swinging gates, sliding or cantilever gates require regular maintenance to ensure they continue to work properly. If yours is acting up, here are a few troubleshooting steps you can take to see if you can get it working again:

  • Check if there’s any debris like twigs, leaves or overgrown plants and bushes preventing the gate from closing. Debris and small items in your gate’s path can prevent it from working properly.

  • If you have a cantilever gate, verify that the rollers and wheel bearings are well lubricated and aligned. If these components become dried out or damaged, your gate may malfunction.

  • If you have a sliding gate, make sure the chain is lubricated. You should do this maintenance every year to prevent the chain links from rubbing against each other and causing premature wear. Check to see if the chain has started to sag. The chain can stretch over time, causing the links to become loose and fail. You should also inspect the bottom tracks to ensure they aren’t rusted or damaged.

If you notice any extensive physical damage to your gate, it’s best to reach out to a technician from Creative Door ServicesTM for professional repair. Automatic gates are heavy pieces of equipment with many moving parts that can be dangerous to work with.

close up of driveway gate motor and electrical components

Troubleshooting: Electrical Issues

Many automatic gates have photo eye sensors that can become misaligned. If there isn’t a clear path between the sensors, the gate may not function properly. If this happens, realign the sensors and make sure they face each other. If the photo eye lenses seem to be aligned, they could be dirty, smudged, or covered in cobwebs. Wipe them down with a dry, lint-free cloth to get them working again.

If you’ve determined that the photo eyes aren’t the issue, try cutting the power supply and manually opening or closing your gate. If you can’t move your gate at all, there’s probably a structural issue like broken tracks or rollers that must be investigated by a professional.

However, if your automatic gate swings freely when disconnected from the power source, you may have an electrical problem on your hands. It may be caused by pests nesting inside the gate operator or rodents chewing through the wires and weakening the connection. Before taking apart your gate operator, verify that the “hold open” command hasn’t accidentally been left on. If the command is engaged, simply turn it off to get your gate working again.

If you can’t figure out what’s wrong with your gate, call an expert to make sure you don’t cause more damage to your gate operator or injure yourself trying to make the necessary repairs.

using remote to open driveway gate from car

Planned Maintenance

At Creative Door ServicesTM, we want your automatic sliding or cantilever gate system to last for as long as possible. That’s why we offer a planned maintenance program. One of our expert technicians will periodically come to your home and inspect your gate system to ensure it’s working properly. They’ll catch any minor problems before they become major issues, saving you valuable time and money.

Residential Driveway Gates in Western Canada

If you need help determining why your sliding or cantilever gate isn’t closing all the way, turn to the knowledgeable team at Creative Door Services™. We install, repair, and maintain all types of residential gates. We also have an impressive inventory of related parts and accessories from industry-leading brands at our disposal.

If you need a quote or have any questions about our products and services, contact one of our eight branches in Western Canada today. We have locations in Kelowna, British Columbia; Vancouver, British Columbia; Calgary, Alberta; Edmonton, Alberta; Fort McMurray, Alberta; Regina, Saskatchewan; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; and Winnipeg, Manitoba.

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