An electric gate opener is a great convenience for homeowners who want to secure their property and control access to their driveway or yard. However, to ensure the best performance and safety, it requires the right sensors that can detect obstacles and prevent accidents. In this article, we will discuss the different types of sensors available for your electric gate opener, their features, and their benefits.
1. Photoelectric Sensors
Photoelectric sensors, also known as photocells, are the most common type of sensors used for electric gate openers. These sensors emit a beam of infrared light that is reflected by a reflector on the opposite side. When an object or person interrupts the beam, the sensor detects it and sends a signal to the opener to stop the gate from moving. Photoelectric sensors are reliable, easy to install, and can detect objects as small as 2 inches in diameter.
2. Safety Loops
Safety loops, also known as induction loops, are sensors that are installed under the driveway or in the ground near the gate. These sensors detect the presence of a vehicle or person by measuring changes in the magnetic field. When a vehicle or person passes over the loop, the sensor sends a signal to the opener to stop the gate from moving. Safety loops are effective at detecting large objects and are commonly used in commercial and industrial settings.
3. Edge Sensors
Edge sensors are sensors that are installed along the edges of the gate. These sensors detect obstacles by sensing pressure or changes in pressure when an object comes into contact with the gate. When an obstacle is detected, the sensor sends a signal to the opener to stop the gate from moving. Edge sensors are reliable and can detect both people and objects.
4. Infrared Sensors
Infrared sensors use a combination of photoelectric and temperature sensors to detect the presence of objects near the gate. These sensors emit infrared light and measure the temperature of objects within the sensor’s range. When an object is detected, the sensor sends a signal to the opener to stop the gate from moving. Infrared sensors are effective at detecting objects in low light conditions and can detect objects as small as 4 inches in diameter.
5. Microwave Sensors
Microwave sensors use microwave technology to detect the presence of objects near the gate. These sensors emit a low-power microwave signal and measure the reflection of the signal when it bounces off an object. When an object is detected, the sensor sends a signal to the opener to stop the gate from moving. Microwave sensors are effective at detecting larger objects and can detect objects up to 100 feet away.
Q: Do electric gate openers come with sensors?
A: Electric gate openers often come with photoelectric sensors included, but other sensors may need to be purchased separately.
Q: How many sensors do I need?
A: The number of sensors you need depends on the size and shape of your gate, the location of obstacles near the gate, and your desired level of safety. A professional installer can help you determine the best sensor configuration for your gate.
Q: How do I maintain my gate sensors?
A: Regular maintenance is important to ensure your sensors are working properly. Check the sensors for dirt or debris that may obstruct the sensors. Also, look for any physical damage to the sensors such as cracks or scratches. In addition, test the sensors regularly to ensure they are detecting obstacles properly.
Q: Can sensors be used with all types of gates?
A: Sensors can be used with most types of electric gates, including sliding, swinging and rolling gates.
Q: Do sensors increase the cost of an electric gate opener?
A: The cost of sensors varies depending on the type and number of sensors needed. However, the added safety and convenience provided by sensors makes them a worthwhile investment for any electric gate opener.
In conclusion, choosing the right sensors for your electric gate opener is essential for ensuring safety and convenience. By understanding the different types of sensors available and their benefits, you can make an informed decision and maintain your electric gate opener for years to come. If you need further assistance or guidance, consult with a professional installer or refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations.