23 things to consider when choosing a gate entry system

Electric gate openers provide the perfect convenience for your home, communal car parks, gated communities, offices and commercial premises; but whilst you can use your zapper to command your electric gate motors to open, how do you deal with visitor access?

Often when installing electric gate kits on to properties, the access control is overlooked at the planning stage so it’s sometimes only after the installation that decisions are made as to more convenient alternatives when certain scenarios crop up or become a source of irritation. However, it isn’t an issue to add devices at a later date as all access control can be retrofitted to any type of electric gate opener control panels – see it like a TV set that can be connected to any type of games console or Freeview box for example.

When you are looking to add an access or intercom system it can seem like a minefield of options as the specification ranges wildly and there are seemingly hundreds of options available! The important thing to do first of all is decide what you actually want to gain. Look at this from both a security and practicality point of view. Writing down a list of possible scenarios and potential issues that you are experiencing or can envisage happening can help to narrow down what features are going to be required. With this list in hand, you already have a fantastic blueprint of what features you are going to need to create the perfect access system for your property.


To help get you under way with your list, here are the top 23 questions to ask yourself:

  1. How far away from the property are your electric gates?
  2. Is it an unobstructed view from the property to the gate? i.e. no trees or pylons in the way
  3. Is it feasible to run cabling between the property and the electric gate openers control panel if needed?
  4. Do you have cleaners, pet sitters, employees, gardeners or window cleaners who require frequent access, even when you are not at the property?
  5. Are you worried about security if one of the above workers in no longer under your employ?
  6. Do you have family and friends who frequently make themselves at home and can be allowed to let themselves in?
  7. For security purposes, would it be an advantage to be able to check the ID of visitors before granting access?
  8. If you are unsure about the validity of the person calling at your gate, would you find it reassuring to be able to record a video clip of the call?
  9. Would you like an easy way to identify and get rid of inconvenient cold callers?
  10. Is it an advantage to be able to see your visitors clearly, even in low light at night time?
  11. How many properties or business premises share the entrance gates? Do you require numerous call buttons or just a single one?
  12. Do you have notably busy periods where it may be beneficial to latch the gates open for a period at your discretion?
  13. Would it be useful to have the gates automatically open for certain periods of the day and closed overnight?
  14. Do you have the kind of property where you need to give short term / time restricted access such as an AirBnB or holiday let for example?
  15. Are there hours where you would like to not be disturbed by callers at the gate? Perhaps at night time when people are sleeping?
  16. Do you struggle with your hearing? Would a flashing light on the intercom help you to notice the call coming through when in the property?
  17. Are you happy with having your intercom handset in one fixed place in your property?
  18. Would multiple fixed handsets in the property be beneficial – one upstairs and one or two downstairs?
  19. Would it be of benefit to be able to take your handset around your home or even in to the garden?
  20. Maybe you would find it more convenient to have gate callers come directly through to your mobile phone instead of a handset?
  21. Do you want to be able to answer gate calls when you are on holiday, home or at work?
  22. Could it be useful to be able to allow delivery drivers to enter if you are not in to leave parcels in a safe place?
  23. Would you like to be able to trigger your electric gate motors when exiting the property by vehicle without having to press a single button or remote?

Access control systems are not just limited to intercoms and sometimes a mix of gadgetry such as ground loops, GSM modules, timers or simple buttons or keypads are combined to achieve the desired results. The best thing to do once you have your requirements listed is to give us a call on 01282 677300 and talk it through with us. We’ve been fitting electric gate intercoms for decades and have never failed to suss out the best logistics!