Inspiring Ideas for Modern Home

How Do Electric Sliding Gates Work?

Electric sliding gates are operated with the help of remote controls. When you press the button on the remote control, the access control system initiates the gate opener motor to open or close the gates. These gates usually operate over a track, but the design of the track may change based on the type.

how do electric sliding gates work

Homeowners these days prefer electric sliding gate openers over conventional driveway gates. And with the benefits they offer, it is clear to see why that is the case.

Despite their surging popularity, though, a large number of users do not know how sliding gates work. This makes it difficult to troubleshoot any problem (related to their working mechanism) that one might encounter.

That’s why I have made this guide for all those curious folks out there. If you are one of them, then dive in!

How Does An Electric Sliding Gate Work?

How Does An Electric Sliding Gate Work

As you can guess from the name, an electric sliding gate comes with an in-built electric motor that helps to operate the gate. It does not require any manual effort, which is why it is also known as an automatic gate. All you need to do is press the button on the remote control, and the sliding gate motor will open or close the gate accordingly.

That was, of course, the simplest explanation of how automatic gates work. Now, I’ll explain their operation in greater detail for those who want to know more. These gates come with an access control system that is programmed into the gate motors. This is the primary element that helps with gate automation. When you press the button on the remote, it signals the motor to open or close the gate.

Conventionally, the gates are placed on top of a sliding track. A set of roller guides or wheels are placed on the bottom of each gate, which helps to slide it along the track when the motor is activated.

That said, the mode of operation may change slightly with the gate’s design, but the fundamental principle remains the same.

On that note, modern automated gates come with a range of additional convenience and security features. For instance, they may come with motion sensors, Wi-Fi connectivity, or voice controls so that you can operate them with little effort. 

They can also be programmed to provide pedestrian access, which means that you can use them as the main gate instead of a driveway gate. Apart from that, they may come with cameras and alarms to enhance security.

What Are The Different Types Of Electric Sliding Gates?

Broadly speaking, there are three primary types of sliding gates available today. I have discussed each of them below:

1. Tracked Sliding Gates

Tracked sliding gates are the simplest and most common type of automatic gate system used on properties. It runs over a single metal track embedded in the ground. Now, the motor is generally placed beside the gate post. However, many homeowners today are opting for underground motors to save space and keep it protected from rain and storms. 


In case you plan to install an underground motor, make sure that it comes with a powerful remote control or good Wi-Fi connectivity. If it doesn’t, you will not be able to operate the motor under the ground.

2. Telescopic Sliding Gates

Telescoping gates consist of multiple segments that stack in front of each other when the gate opens. Such a design is well-suited for homes that do not have a lot of space for a conventional sliding gate. They can be operated by standard electric motors, similar to tracked sliding gates.

With that being said, the installation process is a bit complicated since you need to lay a separate track for each segment. Likewise, the drive cables from the motor need to be separately installed on every gate segment.

3. Cantilever Sliding Gates

Cantilever gates operate a bit differently compared to tracked or telescopic sliding gates. This type of gate comes with no embedded tracks on the ground, which means that Cantilever sliding gates remain suspended in the air. Instead, there is a tubular track fitted on the lower side of the gate, which slides over mounted roller wheels on the gate posts.

The cantilever system is worth considering if the ground below the gate is uneven for laying tracks. Additionally, these gates are relatively longer than the previous two types due to the added counterbalance mechanism. This makes them an ideal choice for industrial or commercial buildings. 

However, the caveat is that the posts need to be much stronger, or else the gates might fall. That’s because the posts hold the entire weight of the gate, as well as the post-mounted rollers.

Benefits Of Using Automated Sliding Gates

Compared to traditional gates, automated sliding gates are a lot more convenient to use. Besides that, there are several other benefits to these gates, as I have outlined below.

1. Relatively Durable

Automated sliding gates are designed to be highly durable. Therefore, they can withstand most weather conditions or impact damages without any issues. Also, the materials used for building the gate and the motors are resistant to rust and corrosion, which further enhances durability.

2. Added Security

Most automatic sliding gates these days come with advanced features, such as motion sensors, alarms, and other anti-tamper mechanisms. This will discourage trespassers and burglars from manipulating or tampering with the gate, which will improve the security of your home and make your life easier.

3. Increased Safety

As I have already mentioned, a typical automated sliding gate comes with motion sensors. These sensors can detect the proximity, speed, and distance of incoming objects. On top of that, there are strong brakes on the roller guides. So, if any person or vehicle comes too close or touches the gate, it will stop moving immediately to avoid any accidents.

4. Energy-Efficient

The motors that are used in these automated sliding gates are designed to be highly energy-efficient. That way, you won’t have to worry about increased energy bills from using your gate.

As a matter of fact, the gate opener system operates entirely on battery. This means that it won’t have any major impact on your electricity usage, except for when you will need to charge the battery. And if the gate has solar charging capabilities, it will charge on its own when the sun is out, which makes it even more convenient.

In that context, you might ask - “can I use a standard car battery for gate openers?” Well, you absolutely can! Of course, you need to ensure that the car battery has enough energy left in it to power the opener mechanism. After all, you wouldn’t want the battery to run out when the gate is only partially open.

How Do Electric Sliding Gates Work Final Words

How Do Electric Sliding Gates Work Final Words

Electric sliding gates are definitely worth it, especially if you want the added security and convenience they offer. That is why they have become so popular these days.

You can get an automatic swing gate for your driveway, too, as it operates using a similar system. The only difference is that the gates swing open instead of sliding to the sides.

Whichever you choose, you can get the new gates installed with the help of a professional. That will ensure you do not encounter any issues related to the gate after a few days of usage. 

Checkout our other article on how to increase the efficiency of electric sliding gates to know more on the topic before getting one for your home.