Whether you have a sliding or swing gate, you need to take good care of it or it will need repair more often than normal. While modern automatic systems make operation a breeze, they are also quite complex and this poses some maintenance challenges. Check out some of the most commonly made mistakes and how to avoid them.
Each component requires a quick check. For the inspection to be effective, you have to be familiar with the common signs of trouble. When looking at the metal components, watch out for dullness, bending, chipping and deep scratches. For example, it is quite easy to tell if a track or wheel is bent, in the case of a sliding system. With some hardware parts like sealed bearings, however, it’s challenging to determine if there is wearing just by looking at them. That is why you need to listen to how they work. If they continue to make noise after lubrication, then they are most certainly worn and will need replacement.
It is common for homeowners to miss lubricating some hardware parts just because it isn’t obvious that they need it. A simple rule of thumb it to watch out for grease joints during the inspection and apply grease into them during lubrication. Pay special attention to the motor unit as its grease joint is most likely to be out of plain sight. Use grease recommended by the manufacturer to lower the risk of damage and the need for gate opener repair to the minimum. If your opener has an emergency lock, you should lubricate it too. Use graphite powder lubricant which has been especially formulated for locks. Apply it straight into the keyway. This type of lubricant will help to protect all external locks from freezing.
Wooden gates, in particular, require repainting annually. With iron and steel ones, you can do this less often, but they will still need that kind of care. Otherwise, they will be at risk of great damage. If wood gets soaked with water and cannot dry quickly, rotting will begin. When running an inspection of your unit, you should watch out for darker sections which are soft to touch. Splinters may come out too. If you notice this issue, you must opt for repair right away. A leaning or sinking post is also a problem which requires immediate attention as it may prevent the gate from opening eventually.