DIY Remote Gate Opener

Introduction: DIY Remote Gate Opener

Engineering Undergrad, Marine Veteran, DIY Everything

After building a Fence we decided we need a gate but shortly after installing it I had to get out in the pouring rain to open it pull the car up get back out and close it. It may be easier to buy a pre made kit but you still have alot of work to do to get it to work. Why not put the parts together yourself and save 500 bucks. Here is how I did it.

First your gate has to be mounted on a sturdy post because the force of the opener is much more than a static gate. I opted to concrete all terminal posts and create corners at the gate area.

Parts

  • Linear Actuator ( amazon )
  • Small lead acid Battery
  • Solar Panel ( mine is Harbor Freight HF but now they are much cheaper online)
  • solar charge controller HF or online
  • Remote relay (amazon)
  • winch relay (cheaper online)

Step 1: Power

Power

A few options exist.

  1. Remote location with sun would be best for solar or wind power. 125 feet of direct bury wire will cost as much as the entire solar setup
  2. Near a powered structure an AC to DC converter like the one powering you router would be sufficient.

Step 2: Solar Power Source

My set up uses some old and new components. The cost with links is listed on the video.

The 15 watt panel feeds the controller charging the battery (easy part)

The remote relay is wired in to the winch relay to create a reversing circuit (test before you unplug anything and label the wires.)

The battery is the same cost as a gate battery but is really the cheapest lawn mower battery at tractor supply (with more amp hours than the little gate one)

Step 3: Angles

Getting the angles right is different every time. I used old bed frame angle iron to make a triangle to mount to the gate. The actuator came with the small mount but is not nearly enough leverage to move the gate, especially in a strong wind.

Mount the actuator to the hinge post and the to the gate paying attention to the stopping points

Step 4: Reinforce Your Gate

I used the same angle iron as before on an entire span of the gate and have since added U bolts along the span

Step 5: Test and Enjoy

Once you have everything mounted and wired up you should be able to move the mounts around to get your desired stopping angle. test the gate from full open to full close. ( starting with a charged battery helps )

Enjoy not having to get out in the rain to open an close the gate every time you come home

NOTES

If your using the same remote as I am do not forget to turn the power switch off.

There is no safety... children should not be near the gate when in operation

Running the White antenna wire up and or out of the box is required to reach full range.

12 volt is very safe, but if you are using 120 from the house then all electrical standards should be followed (most low volt systems are unregulated)

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    3 Discussions

    Hello Eric, I'm on the same boat;

    Get an 18 inch long 12v/or if better 24v long echo worthy actuator which is a lot more powerful and saves the wasting sun power! ( if 12v need to step down 8 volts whereas in 24 volts it only has to deal with 4 volts energy waste! a 15w solar panel ( i build two myself - sourced parts from a decommissioned old buss stop!) and a deep cycle/marine type battery ( I used my thrown away big 4x4 toyota landcruiser batteries/ best as they have long lasting features - up to 6 months! no calcium jokes though -- go for acid!! type ones- its a heavy gate mine. the winch relay need be 500 amp to have enough spare for future use....i can go on all day but that is in essence what is needed for this project...taking electricity outside is not easy task! there are no more than two options: either armoured cable (SWA) or galvanised metal conduit ( a lot more safer and secure)