When it comes to automatic gates, there’s a big difference between just automating a gate and creating a reliable, lasting, and safe automated system.
In this post, we’ll outline the costs to help you decide what kind of automatic gate is best for your situation.
Automatic Fence Gate Cost
A proper automatic fence gate system starts with the posts. Posts should be installed in a concrete footer that is “belled out” on the bottom at the proper depth. The concrete footers must be below the frost line or the posts will eventually work loose.
The cost for posts will range from $700 to $2,000. Hinges are also a very important consideration. The smoother that the gate swings manually then the less wear and tear on the operating equipment. Check out Shut It Gate Hardware for some of the best hinges on the market.
- A quality hinge will cost around $95 each. The actual gates can be custom made or ordered pre-fabricated and will range from $1,100 to up to $20,000.
Related: Iron Driveway Gates
Automatic Driveway Gate Cost
Automatic driveway gates are perfect for use on homes and businesses. Vehicle detection devices are used to detect vehicles near your gate system and trigger an action. They can either open the gate, reverse the gate if its moving, activate a keypad, send an alert, and much more.
A typical driveway gate costs between $1,400 and $3,200. The addition of a remote control operator can cost between $550-$4,500, bringing the overall cost to roughly $1,950-$7,700. These prices all depend on the size of the gate and the style you’re looking for.
Here are some options for installing an automatic driveway gate for your property:
Good Option: Probes are devices that are buried either next to or in the roadway. Probes are not ideally used to reverse the gate but work for triggering the gate to open, however, they are often more prone to lightning damage. A quality probe will cost around $400.
Better Option: An Optex vehicle sensor could also be used. These are mounted on a post near the side of the roadway. These sensors will cost around $600.
Best Option: For a longer lasting system, it is recommended to use a loop in most cases. A loop uses a combination of a detector and a precisely placed wire installed under the roadway surface.
For asphalt and concrete roadways, the surface can be saw-cut and wire placed. For gravel roadways, a properly rated pre-formed loop works great. Loops will cost between $700 and $1000.
Automatic Sliding Gate Cost
There are two ways that driveway gates operate, either by swinging or sliding. A majority of residential driveway gates swing open because it takes up significantly less space beside the driveway than a sliding door. Although it’s a bit more expensive, an automatic sliding gate might just be what you’re looking for, if you have room to spare.
The cost of an automatic sliding gate depends on the size of the gate and its style.
Here are different types of sliding gates and their approximate cost:
Slide V Track ($500 - $3,000)
- Pros: The most common and reliable slider, this gate comes with many different options.
- Cons: Not a good fit in areas with ice and snow, and requires additional space on each side.
Slide Rear Pipe ($500 - $3,000)
- Pros: This inexpensive option is easily converted from manual to automatic.
- Cons: Same as other sliding gates, it requires additional space on each side. It is not as attractive, and the installer needs to be familiar with the particulars of the gate.
Slide Cantilever ($1,000 - $4,000)
- Pros: This easy-to-use option is great for areas with snow and ice.
- Cons: It requires much more space than any other sliding gate option.
Automatic Gate Systems Cost
The most common types of residential swing gate operators come in two different form factors – linear actuators and harmonic arms. These automatic gate systems differ in functionality and installation price.
- Linear Actuators are rear-mounted to the post which the gate hangs from.
- Harmonic Arm operators are mounted on a solid surface behind the gate posts.
Many actuators come with brackets that can be bolted on. We always recommend welding the brackets, when possible, for increased reliability. The internal components of the operator will vary between manufacturers which is often reflected in the pricing.
Better operators are more expensive but are designed to last longer and usually have more features. A quality gate operator will cost between $2000 and $6500 for bi-parting systems.
- Pros: Less expensive to buy & install.
- Cons: Easily damaged from minor collisions & has a shorter lifespan than harmonic arms.
- Pros: Has a longer lifespan than linear actuators & is rated for more daily cycles. Incurs less damage from minor collisions.
- Cons: More expensive to install & requires a larger footprint.
Automatic Gate Keypad Entry
A keypad will allow operation of the gate from a specifically programmed access code. Hardwired keypads are ideal if you do not wish to replace any batteries, but wireless keypads do work great and batteries can last several years, depending on usage.
Hardwired keypads run about $250, whereas, a wireless keypad will run about $150.
For visitors that require access (friends, package deliveries, etc.) a telephone entry system or intercom system can be installed. A traditional telephone entry system requires a phone line (either shared or dedicated) to make the phone call. Cellular telephone entry systems are also available for locations with good cellular reception.
Cellular units are generally more expensive but may be a better option if installing a telephone line will be burdensome. Cellular units are also less susceptible to lightning surges than the traditional telephone entry systems.
- They require activation of a SIM card and voice and data plan from a cellular carrier (usually AT&T or T-Mobile). Telephone entry units range from $1,100 to $3,000.
Automatic Gate Installation Cost
When it comes to the installation of an automatic gate, the cost varies tremendously based on the type and style of the gate system, as well as the materials.
Aside from the posts, the actual mechanism needs to be set up, and in many cases, the sensor will need to be calibrated and the remote set up. Making sure your gate is safe and functional can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on its size and style.
The labor portion of automatic gate installation is often two-fold:
First, there is the installation of the gate itself, which can cost between $750 and $1,800.
Second, there is usually an additional cost for the automated system installation. This can often run anywhere between $1,500 and $3,000. As with any set up, the more involved it is, the higher the price.
For example, a vertical steel pivot gate will cost more than a vinyl, remote-controlled gate.
For example, a vertical steel pivot gate will cost more than a vinyl, remote-controlled gate.
Cost of Automatic Gate Safety Devices
Photo eyes are the most common safety device used on gate systems. They should be installed as close to the gate as possible to avoid a pedestrian from being trapped by the gate. They work in a similar fashion as garage door photo eyes.
A retro-reflective photo eye will have a powered device on one side of the road and a reflector on the opposite side. This makes for a simple installation, especially when getting wire to the opposite side of the road is difficult.
Retro-reflective photo eyes can be problematic with rain and fog, however, since the reflector may be unable to reflect back to the main unit.
- For this reason, we recommend using Through-Beam photo eyes whenever possible. When installed properly, Through-Beam photo eyes are a very reliable solution. Photo eyes will cost between $100 and $300.
Another form of safety device is a safety edge. These are electronic rubber bumpers that stop the gate if they encounter an obstacle. These are less commonly used on swing gates as they distract from the appearance.
Solar Powered Automatic Gates
When it comes to the installation of an automatic gate, a dedicated electrical circuit (115v/240v) is ideal for a reliable system. If power is not available at the gate location, then a certified electrician will be required for installing a new circuit.
Solar power is not as reliable as AC power but is feasible in some cases.
It is recommended to install solar panels in areas that have at least 6 hours of sunlight each day. The type and number of batteries are also an essential part for a properly designed solar setup. Solar powered systems will add about $1,000 to $2,000 depending on the size and number of solar panels and batteries.
Emergency Personnel Access (Fire, Police, Ambulance)
In cases when there is an emergency, it is best practice to install a means for emergency personnel to enter the property without waiting at the gate. In most cases, this can be accomplished by installing either a KNOX switch (a county-specific key switch) or a siren operated sensor (SOS).
Prices range from $300 to $500 depending on the device used.
Consult an Expert—Fortified Services, LLC
Fortified Services, LLC will ensure that your gate system is installed properly. We take into consideration the use of conduits, the proper depth for concrete footers, and proper welding and wiring procedures. These are vital when installing a long-lasting automated gate system.