Restore Gate Operator Functions After Flooding
Hurricanes and flooding are always emergencies, and affect all aspects of life for residents and business in in states that are subject to such disasters, like Florida, Texas and Louisiana. Where automatic gate operator equipment is used to control swinging, sliding or barrier gates, hurricane debris and flooding typically cause failures in those systems. As soon as the winds and flooding subside, fast action can minimize the damage in many cases. When flooding is from fresh water, gate operators can sometimes be returned to operation without replacement, but salt water intrusion almost always causes electrical problems that mean a replacement will be needed. Here’s what you can do to minimize damage, restore access to property and assess your gate opener equipment, following a flood or hurricane. The following steps, taken after a hurricane or flooding incident are recommended for safety and the protection of your equipment:
- Step 1 – Shut Down Electrical Power – Shut off the circuit breaker that controls power to the gate operator, either remotely or where the equipment is installed. For safety reasons, clearly secure and label the breaker to prevent accidental power restoration or have a qualified electrician remove the breaker and disconnect the circuit. This step prevents potential electrocution risks for workers and others.
- Step 2 – Manually Disconnect the Gate Operator – This step will allow manual operation of your swinging, sliding or barrier gate. In many cases, leaving the gate open or manning it with security personnel, if necessary, restores access to the property. Vehicle entry for emergency, repair crews and regular traffic can return to normal until normal gate operation is restored.
- Step 3 – Inspect the Area and Clear Debris – Remove all debris from gates and roadways, as well as from the area around the gate operator. Inspect all hardware and check gate alignment to make sure full manual operation is possible. Test manual gate operation to determine whether regular opening and closing is possible. If necessary, open gates and leave them open.
- Step 4 – Assess Extent of Flooding – If the gate operator enclosure was submerged in flood waters, it’s important to determine whether that water was salt water, brackish water or fresh water. If the operator was submerged in salt or brackish water, it will almost certainly need replacement. If only fresh water was involved, the following steps may allow it to return to operation, but replacement may still be required:
- Step 5 – Open Operator Cabinet and Flush Thoroughly – After fresh water submersion, flush the enclosure with clean fresh water, removing all silt and debris from the cabinet and drain completely. This will remove all contamination that might cause damage later.
- Step 6 – Dry Equipment Thoroughly – Allow the gate operator equipment to dry completely, including circuit boards and motors, using fans and even hot-air blowers to speed the process, if possible. After drying, have a qualified electrician carefully inspect the unit for any damage and assess it for potential faults that may require repairs or replacement of the unit.
- Step 7 – Lubricate all Moving Parts – Follow manufacturer’s recommendations and lubricate moving components, chains and other parts, as required. For chain operated sliding gates, cleaning and lubrication of the operating chain is essential.
- Step 8 – Restore Power and Test Operation – Once power is restored to the gate operator, test it thoroughly for proper, smooth operation, including all safety features. Follow manufacturer’s recommendations for these tests and operate the gate through multiple cycles before returning it to operation. If these tests fail, further repair or replacement of the operator may be required.
For all swinging, sliding and barrier gates, it is important to select replacement equipment that has the capacity to safely and reliably operate the gate. Gate length, weight, and how often it must be opened daily all play a role in choosing the right replacement operator. We can help you find information on specific gate operator types that meet your installation requirements. By matching gate operator model to capacity and design requirements, you’ll ensure long life and maximum value over time. Our specialists at our national fencing and security products company will be happy to assist you in choosing the right products and with additional information. Our fast, direct-shipping from Linear and other manufacturers ensures prompt delivery and our volume-purchasing power gives you the lowest possible prices for your equipment.
Highest Quality Gate Opener Equipment – Direct-Shipped to You
When a hurricane, flood or other disaster strikes and you need to replace your access control and security fencing hardware, there’s no time to waste. Restoring controlled access to your residential, commercial or industrial property, once the emergency has ended, is an immediate priority. That’s where our centrally-located security products company shines. One call to us gives you access to unmatched expertise from our specialized experts, along with immediate ordering and customized information to help you make the right equipment choices. We ship directly from Linear and other manufacturers and can expedite delivery of your order by bypassing intermediate shipping points. That ensures the fastest delivery, along with cost savings, by eliminating warehousing and unnecessary shipping costs. We’re a volume purchaser of these products, and pass along substantial savings on the cost of this equipment to you. Call us immediately after any weather emergency for the fastest possible response.