Yes another phone call yesterday from a frustrated installer.
He purchased a cheap sliding gate kit online, he installed it and all good for 1 hour then smoke from the motor. No luck from the seller accept them saying bad installation.. No questions asked, just passed the buck. The customer had no where to go, and no one to talk to..So he rang me..thanks Mr google.
I get this all the time. People want cheap or a bargain, and I fully understand, but within reason. Cheap does not always mean bad quality, it could be ok and selling cheap for any number of reasons, but lets be clear here. If you buy cheap from a supplier who also sells expensive, you need to think about that. Why would he sell a cheap model and an expensive model... Well that is because that is what customers want. 50% of my customers want the best of everything and will pay for it. The other 50% want the cheapest and they want it to perform just as good as the expensive model.. Good thinking but no...
I find that the customers that want the best, always buy bigger than they need so it will be running easy and will last. The customers that buy cheap, tend to say things like, they have a gate around 4.5m when it is really 6.8m and twice the weight. They buy the cheapest motor which has a low rating so it is at max push/pull every time it is turned on.
Another issue as happened yesterday when I started to ask questions, Is the gate level, so is the ground track perfectly level. No he says, it goes up hill about 150mm from one end to the other. I think what he means is probably 200-250mm rise over 7-8m which is a lot, and requires a larger motor to handle it.
This is common, and as in this situation yesterday, the kg rating of the motor he bought was around 500kgs, but when you add a mid to heavy gate, and maybe 7-8m long, not 5m long, and going up hill by 150-200mm, the cheap motor was ok for quite a few open/closes, then it over heated and died. You would not use a mini car to pull a trailer..same thing.
So what should you do?
- Always buy from a good supplier that you can call and have a conversation with. Yes that might cost more but you will get the advise and help you need from the get go..
- Always be sure about the size and weight.
- Is it a easy flat track installation nice and level or not.
- Can a small child push open the sliding gate without a problem or it is hard and heavy?
- Is the track like a bent railway track, up and down.
- Is the gate solid filled or open pattern, and which way would a wind blow into the gate if in a high wind area.
THEN DOUBLE IT good rule of thumb.
If you buy a quality motor that is rated around 800kg, It has a good 3-4 year warranty, and the gate is all good by the things I have just said, then go for it.
But if you buy a cheap system say 500kg, 12months warranty, that could be over rated, and some of my rules could be an issue for you then expect trouble.
I hope this helps and if you have a need to call me Perth time on 08 95711936