How Do Solar Gate Openers Work?

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In a country of relentless sunshine, scorching temperatures, and tropical cyclones that blast us with wind, rain, and hail, automatic gates are a godsend. When nature is expressing her fiercest tendencies, the hasty click of a button is all we need to enter our well-secured homes, and find respite.

As with many of our most useful appliances, automatic gates need electricity to run. This can either be sourced from the local electricity grid, or generated from the sun with solar panels. In this article, we’ll explore the latter in more detail—how solar gate openers work, as well as their benefits, reliability, and more.

What is a solar gate opener?

A solar gate opener is an automatic gate that uses solar power to run. It works in the same way as other automatic gates, but generates its own sustainable solar electricity, rather than drawing power from the national electricity grid.

How do solar gate openers work?

Solar gate openers work by generating electricity from a small solar panel, usually attached to a connected pole or post. The solar panel is connected to the gate’s control box, where it sends the electricity needed to control the gate, as well as a solar battery, where it sends excess electricity that can be stored for later use, such as during the night when the solar panel isn’t able to generate electricity.

The solar panels of solar gate openers tend to be small (roughly 1 meter in height, and 0.5 meters in width), rectangular-shaped, and contain a gridwork of photovoltaic cells. These cells generate electricity by allowing light to knock electrons away from their atoms, which creates an electrical charge, and a subsequent electrical field when working with other materials such as silicon and boron.

When the solar panels generate electricity from the sun, it’s sent through an electrical wire to the system’s control box, which it’s divided between the power pack that the gate uses to function, and the 12v solar battery to keep as a reserve.

What are the pros and cons of solar gate openers?


    • Environmentally sustainable—with the planet warming at an unprecedented rate, solar gate openers are a sustainable way to power your gate, which helps to reduce your carbon emissions. The display of solar panels on your property can also encourage others to follow suit.
    • Power access—the gate has a source of power attached to it, rather than having to run wires up to your home. This can save a lot of money and disruption.
    • Lower electricity bills—with energy generated from the sun, your automatic gates will help to reduce your electricity bills a little.
    • Gates still work during power outages—with its own power source, your solar gate will continue working during outages, keeping your home safe.


  • Unreliable power source—solar panels work most effectively on sunny days, and won’t work at all in the dark (obviously!) This means that if you have a long rainy or overcast period, less electricity is produced for the gate, which reduces the number of times it can be used during the day.
  • Limited number of uses per day—on average, solar gate openers can open and close a gate around eight to ten times a day. To increase this number, a larger battery may be required.
  • Solar gate batteries

How long do solar gate batteries last?

Solar gate batteries tend to last between two to three years, but can last for longer if the battery is left undisturbed.

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