The Best Automatic Gate Openers Reviews

As a homeowner, you already lose a lot of time closing the doors and securing the garage. The last thing you need is to waste even more time opening and closing the gates. Fortunately, automatic openers for gates are here to save the day, eliminating the tedious opening and closing of the gates by allowing you to do this action without getting out of the car. If you’re interested in installing such a system and you want to make sure that you have bought the best model on the market, check out the rest of the article.

Top 5 Automatic Gate Openers Comparison

Photo Automatic Gate Openers Price
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1. US Automatic 020320 Sentry 300

  • Operates gates that measure up to 20 feet in length
  • It’s powered by a 12V DC battery
  • Comes with 2 remote transmitters
  • Covered by a 3-year warranty
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2. Mighty Mule MM562

  • It’s designed for dual swing gates that measure up to 18 feet in length
  • Powered by a 12V 7 amp-hour battery
  • Solar capable if you buy a Mighty Mule solar panel separately
  • Backed up by a 18 month warranty
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3. E8 400MM

  • Can open gates that measure up to 26 feet in length
  • Designed to work with dual gates
  • Solar compatible
  • Backed up by a 1-yar warranty
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4. Ghost Controls TSS1XP

  • Optimized for tube gates
  • Can work with swing gates that measure up to 20 feet
  • Solar power capable
  • Lifetime warranty for the motor and gear assembly
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5. Mighty Mule FM500

  • Designed for single swing gates that measure up to 18 feet in length
  • Perfect for all types of gates
  • Easy DIY installation
  • Covered by an 18-month warranty
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2017 Automatic Gate Openers Reviews

US Automatic 020320 Sentry 300 Review

US Automatic has hit the jackpot with the release of the 020320 Sentry 300, defying all expectations and delivering a high-quality product to customers. It’s a model that has received only great reviews from those who have already bought it due to its magnificent operation, this being the reason why we had to rank it as being the best product of this kind on the market. It might come at a spicy price, costing approximately $950, but it’s definitely worth investing in it because it’s highly dependable. This model can operate farm gates that measure up to 20 feet in length, chain link gates that measure up to 14 feet in length, and ornamental iron gates that measure up to 14 feet in length. Also, it has a compression rating of 1000 pounds. The open and close time that it offers is typically 16 seconds, which means that you won’t waste time at all waiting for the opener to do its job.
It’s powered by a 12V DC battery that has two charging options, more precisely with the help of the included AC transformer or the US Automatic solar kit. If you opt for the solar panel, you will qualify for a 30 percent federal tax credit. You can do the installation procedure on your own due to the fact that it’s incredibly easy and it only takes approximately 1 hour. Best of all, this product is covered by a generous 3-year warranty.

PROS CONS
  • Compression rating of 1000 pounds
 
  • Open or close time of only 16 seconds
 
  • With the solar panel option you qualify for a 30% federal tax credit
 
  • Energy efficient design when solar panel option is used
 
  • Easy DIY installation
 

Mighty Mule MM562 Review

Mighty Mule is a company that has made a name for itself in this market, offering customers a wide variety of top of the line gate openers in order to make their lives easier. The best model that they have produced up to this point is definitely the MM562, a product that you can purchase for the price of approximately $730. This amazing model can handle heavy duty dual swing gates that measure up to 18 feet in length or that have a maximum of 850 pounds per leaf. The types of dual gates that it can handle include tube, panel, ornamental, vinyl, wood, or chain link. It’s powered by a 12V 7 amp-hour battery. Also, due to the fact that it’s solar compatible, you can purchase the Mighty Mule 5W solar panel or the Mighty Mule 10W solar panel separately in order to enjoy a more energy efficient operation.
It comes with a single-button remote, an AC transformer, a control box, a 12V 7 amp-hour battery, the required hardware for the installation process, and a user manual with an interactive DVD. When it comes to warranty, this model is backed up by the manufacturer for 18 months.

PROS CONS
  • Can handle dual gate types such as ornamental, panel, vinyl, wood, tube, or chain link
  • It can only work with dual gates
  • 30% residential energy efficient property tax credit if you go with the solar power option
  • Comes with a single remote transmitter
  • Easy DIY installation that doesn’t require welding
 
  • Fast opening or closing of the gate
 

E8 400MM Review

Another renowned brand on this market is E8, being responsible for the release of the amazing 400MM model. Coming at the reasonable price of approximately $440, this top of the line gate opener doesn’t sacrifice quality at all, despite the fact that it’s cheaper than other high-end models. It is compatible with dual gates that measure up to 26 feet in length, or that have a maximum weight of 1200 pounds. This stat solely should be more than enough to understand the amazing capacity and performance of the product. It features a useful battery backup that ensures the opener will function even when there’s a power outage. Therefore, there are no circumstances under which you will need to get out of the car to open and close the gate. What makes it even more interesting is the fact that this model is solar compatible. This means that you can go for a more energy efficient option as well. Also, if you opt for the solar power operation, you will even qualify for a 30 percent residential energy efficient property tax credit.
In the package that comes when you purchase this product, you will find a dual stainless steel arm operator, two release keys, a receiver with three remote transmitter units, a control box, a backup 7AH lead acid battery, a transformer, two primary wall brackets, two secondary brackets, bolts and nuts for the brackets, a safety decal, two door holding brackets, and an installation manual. To conclude our review, we mention that this product is backed up by a 1-year warranty.

PROS CONS
  • Screw driven type system for enhanced reliability
  • Can only handle dual swing gates
  • Comes with manual release keys
 
  • Is solar power compatible for an energy efficient operation
 
  • Easy installation
 

Ghost Controls TSS1XP Review

Security and convenience are extremely important for homeowners, both of these needs being covered with the installation of the Ghost Controls TSS1XP. To purchase this product, you have to spend approximately $500, but you can get a better deal depending on the place where you buy it from. It’s solar power compatible, this option being viable due to the fact that the product comes with a 10W solar panel. This option increases the energy efficiency and the Eco-friendliness of the product. It’s designed to work best for tube gates, but it can handle working with any type of swing gate that measures up to 20 feet as well. The push-to-open installation ensures that you won’t require the help of a professional for this task. Best of all, it has a fast open or close time.
When you purchase this product, you receive a gate opener arm with a 6-foot cable, a 10W solar panel, a system control box, a 3-button remote transmitter, an AC transformer, a battery harness, mounting brackets, fasteners, and an installation manual. When it comes to warranty, this product is covered by a lifetime warranty for the gear and motor, and an 18-month warranty for the rest of the parts.

PROS CONS
  • Optimized for tube gates, but it works with all types of swing gates as well
  • Comes with a single 3-button remote
  • Comes with necessary installation hardware
 
  • Comes with 10W solar panel that offers an energy efficient operation
 
  • Easy installation that doesn’t require professional help
 

Mighty Mule FM500 Review

The last top quality gate opening system that we are going to talk about is the Mighty Mule FM500 model that comes at the price of approximately $600. This heavy duty gate operator can handle single swing gates that measure up to 18 feet in length or that have a maximum weight of 850 pounds. This is less than what other better-ranked models offer, this being the reason why it has received this ranking. The types of gates that it can handle include ornamental, tube, panel, wood, vinyl, or chain link. With the separate purchase of a 10W solar panel produced by Mighty Mule, you can opt for a more energy efficient operation. In case you go with this option, you might even qualify for a 30 percent residential energy efficient property tax credit. Therefore, you might even have a lot to gain if you go with this model.
The easy DIY installation of this product ensures that you won’t need to call in a professional for this procedure. It comes with a 12V battery, a single remote transmitter, and a control box that is spacious enough for a second 12V battery. Also, it’s backed up by an 18-month warranty.

PROS CONS
  • Can handle all single swing gate types, including ornamental, tube, wood, vinyl, chain link, or panel
  • It comes with a single remote transmitter
  • Solar power compatible
  • Solar panel has to be purchased separately
  • Fast opening or closing of the gate
 
  • Easy DIY installation
 

Buying Guide

No doubt about it, an automatic opener for your gate is useful and can save you a lot of time and effort but for it to be a great purchase, it must be exactly what you are looking for. Knowing what to look for in a product will guarantee the best performance so here is a quick buying guide to narrow down your options.

Measure your gate

What you first need to do is know the size of your gate so you will choose a model that will be powerful enough to handle it. Different models have different powers that are related to the height and length of the gate. If you want the opener to be energy efficient and not require too much energy to be able to pull the gates, you must pick one that can handle the size of the gate. The weight of the gate is equally important as the size because it can also overburden the opener.

Choose a type of opener

The market provides several types that can fit single or dual gates and this is an important aspect to consider. Depending on your gate design, you must look for units that can handle the gate and that can be installed on the gate, overhead, or underground. Also, it’s important if the gate swings or slides because this influences the type of the opener as well. If the door swings, take into consideration if it slides in one piece or in two pieces.

Consider the power source

It must be powered in a certain way, usually from an AC power source, meaning you will have to ensure a power supply near the gate. If this is not possible, you have the option of purchasing a solar powered unit that doesn’t require a power supply. Also, it’s useful to go for a unit with a battery backup to prevent unpleasant situations in case the power runs out. Luckily, the best products available include all three power sources for the highest convenience.

Will the column sustain the opener?

The majority of the gate openers are installed on the columns of the gate so you need to analyze how solid and large they are in order to provide enough room for the unit. Check the hinges of the gates as well to see how easy and smooth they slide or swing to ensure the device will not be overwhelmed while opening and closing the gates.

How often will you open the gates?

This detail counts when choosing the type of opener and the price. If you will install it on a secondary gate that you open once a day or only occasionally, you can go for a cheaper model of a lower power. If the gate is intensely used, you are better off with a more powerful and reliable model.

How Do they Work

Automatic openers are becoming more and more popular among homeowners who want to enjoy the comfort of having the gate opened and closed for them. As such, the demand is continuously increasing and clients are more curious to discover the types available and how each one works. If you are too, here is a short description of their operating mode.
There are two main types available, namely hydraulic and electromechanical. The first type uses a fluid to operate the mechanism that opens and closes the door while the second relies on electricity. They are usually controlled by a remote that allows you to operate them from a distance. The most common type used is the electromechanical one so manufacturers have developed solar panels that recharge them in order to ensure efficiency even if the electricity is shut down.
Depending on the way they operate, these devices are split into 3 categories, as follows:

  • Articulated gate openers

  • They use an arm to control the gate and can be installed on any gate, regardless the width. The arm opens the gate the same way you would open a door or a window, by retracting inwards. It’s installed on the pylon that sustains the gate and depending on how wide and heavy the gate is, you can place it at the base or in the middle of the pylon. In case you have double gates, you will have to purchase a model for sectional gates that includes two units on each side of the gate.

  • Underground gate openers

  • Also known as “Under-gate Jack openers”, these use a pivot point of the gate to maneuver it directly without the need of a stretching arm. They are more subtle and you can hardly notice they are installed but they are not very solid either, being easy to vandalize.

  • Sliding gate openers

  • As the name itself suggests, this type uses a sliding mechanism that pulls the door to the side to open it and slides it back to the middle to close it. It’s perfect for limited spaces where you can’t open the gate by rotating it around its own axis.

About Me

Hi, my name is John Bailey and, over time, I discovered how important it is to have a good door opener installed at home. I've been looking for a unit that will simplify getting my car in and out of the garage and that will last for many years.
After analyzing the most popular brands and products available on the market, I decided to share my conclusions with other people and help them find the product for their home.
This is why I designed the GarageDoorOpener.Best website where you can find helpful advice in choosing the most reliable and quality units.