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Wooden Electric Gate With Metal Support Frame

Choosing the Right Electric Gate for Your Home

What's covered in this guide

There are several different types of electric gates you can choose from and there will usually be two key factors that will influence your decision; the specifications of your driveway and your budget. For many, the aesthetic look will be an important consideration too.

As well as choosing the right electric gate for you and your circumstances, we believe it is just as important to choose the right installer. Electric gates are a pretty big investment and you will want reassurance that the installation is top quality, in terms of safety and technical expertise.

Green Light Electrical, based in Ringwood and covering a wide area across Hampshire and Dorset, consider ourselves experts in this field. With over 10 years’ experience installing electric gates, every job gives us valuable learnings that benefit our future customers. Hindsight is a wonderful thing!

In this helpful guide, we give you an overview of the various types of electric gates available and their comparative ballpark costs, as well as sharing useful tips to help you pick the right installer.

Swing gates

As the name describes, this automatic gate swings open inward, so you need to make sure you have enough space on your driveway for this movement. Cost-wise, a single leaf five-bar gate is the cheapest option at around £5,000-£6,000. This will include the cost of the gates, posts, automation, standard accessories and installation.

Having a pair of gates and more sophisticated entry/exit accessories could increase the cost to roughly £10,000.

Whether you choose a gate made out of timber, steel, aluminium or composite will affect the cost, too. A top of the range pair of swing gates will be in the ballpark of £15,000. At this level, you’re talking about high quality hardwood and accessories like number plate recognition.

Sliding gates

The cost range for a sliding gate is higher than the swing gate because the ground works are more complex. You need to install a track on a foundation pad, which must be level and ideally away from trees with falling debris that could get lodged in the track. You also need enough space to the side of the entryway for the gate to slide across into.

However, if the gate is designed properly, the automation cost can be less than a swing gate’s. For a sliding gate, if it’s close boarded or infilled wood, you need to ensure there are no drawing in hazards. A mid-range solid infill sliding gate will cost roughly £7,000-£8,000.

Bi-fold gates

Some people look at getting a bi-fold gate because this type of gate needs less driveway space which is a plus, however they are a higher risk safety-wise, because more moving leaves equates to more crushing hazards. For this reason, the required additional safety devices make the overall cost of a bi-fold gate at least £12,000.

Telescopic gates

Similar to the sliding gate, the telescopic gate is useful where space is limited, as the gates overlap each other as they open, meaning that they take up less room when they are in an open position. There is more fabrication involved in the building element but the automation can be simpler if it’s a close boarded mechanism and there’s no chance of any drawing in hazards or shearing hazards. Because there are more mechanical processes involved in a telescopic gate, the costs can be around £12,000.


Installation considerations

The costs of any electrical gate installation will vary, based on the type of electric gate you go for, the safety measures required and the extras that you choose. What we highly recommend is that you go for a contractor who is going to be willing to take on the whole project, from start to finish.

There are various elements covered off at the design stage that can affect the cost of the automation so it’s going to be more cost effective to have everything taken care of by the same people. Also, having one contractor means that they’ll take full responsibility for any liability so you won’t have to worry about any disputes if there are any hitches in the process, for example if the gate hasn’t been installed as you expected it to be, or if the extras haven’t been taken care of.

Useful tips to help you choose the right installer

Whenever you are employing any tradesperson, you need the peace of mind that you are contracting someone who is qualified, trained, experienced and who has a good track record. With electric gates, safety is paramount so their credentials in this area are important, too.

If you have any doubt about how competent the installer is, ask to see photos of installations they have completed. It can be a really good indicator of the installer’s proficiency to ask them what the common problems are with electric gates. Anyone who has a lot of experience installing electric gates should be familiar with common problems they can explain to you, as well as how to overcome these issues.

Recommendations are very powerful. You can’t beat someone you know and trust telling you what a great job someone did for them. Reviews and testimonials are also reassuring. Take the time to look for online reviews, and ask the installer direct. They should be happy to provide you with feedback from their customers.

We mentioned safety. Electric gates are classed as machinery, and they can cause serious injury or even death if someone gets trapped in their moving parts. All contractors who are installing electric gates should have some sort of qualification, whether they have been trained by an electric gate manufacturer, approved by Came Safe or accredited by Gate Safe. The Door and Hardware Federation is a useful reference point, too.

How can Green Light Electrical help?

We have picked up a lot of additional on-the-job knowledge through installing and maintaining electric gates for over 10 years now and this experience has been invaluable in giving our customers the best possible service. For example, we have realised over time that one of the biggest issues with electric gates is slugs getting into the control panel and stopping it working.

So, for the last few years, we have been fitting an additional enclosure around the control panel to prevent this problem. We are here to talk you through the whole process and go through all your options step by step. We have a standard form for you to fill out, that asks you all the right questions to help us work out what will be best for your needs, your budget and your style and size of driveway. Photos of where we would be installing your electric gates can be very useful as well. From all this information, we will be able to come up with ideas for you and give you ballpark costs.

If you decide to take things further, we can visit you to do a thorough site survey and confirm final costs before you commit to anything.

How can you contact Green Light Electrical?

We are happy to give you free advice. Call our friendly and expert team on 01425 477943, email us or contact us through our website. Let’s talk about what you would like and make it happen for you!

You can trust us to install safe, reliable and high-quality electric gates at a reasonable cost.

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