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Electric Gates Re-opening

Fault finding.

A new customer in Derby contacted us about his misbehaving electric gates. On occasion, at least once a day, the double swing electric gates re-open and stay ajar after they had been instructed to close. This is a common issue with gates which have been installed with certain BFT control boards.

As a safety feature, if the control board detects an increase in resistance when closing the gates, it interprets this resistance as an obstruction. Obstructions can be caused by a person or vehicle and instructs the gate to reverse slightly then pause.

This ‘obstacle detection’ feature is designed by the manufacturers to meet the Machinery Directive 2006/42/CE and a Force Test at the time of installation is usually carried out to make the gate as safe as possible.

As the mechanical stops on our customers gate have worn and moved slightly, the gates were travelling a little further when closing and when one leaf pushed up against the other it resulted in an increased resistance. As a result the gates re-opened slightly then paused.


We then carried out an Annual Service for the customer and advised on remedial works to be carried out to ensure a longer operating life. Whilst on site we also observed some exposed PVC Twin & Earth electrical cables (not attached to the entry system) and advised our customer that these cables should not be used in external applications and do not meet the requirements set out by BS7671.