Families and businesses throughout the Midwest enjoy the ritual of putting up holiday decorations – including at their gated entrances. Wreaths, ribbons, garland and string lights are beautiful ways to brighten outdoor spaces and welcome guests in celebration of the holiday season.
With more automatic driveway gates being installed, there has been an uptick in folks decorating those areas, as well. It can be a great way to create beauty and cheer in the wintertime. But wreaths and other materials need to be hung properly, and with consideration for the type of structure and technology it interacts with, so that they don’t end up obstructing the entrance and causing unanticipated problems.
What Problems Are Caused by Large Wreaths on Gates?
Wreaths, in particular, are among the oldest and most beloved of holiday decorations this time of year. The larger, heavier ones may seem appropriate for your expansive entrance, but know that they can introduce particular hazards. Businesses and residential communities alike must be aware of how they affect automatic gates and what should be done to protect those spaces.
1. Obstruction of Sensors at Entrances
Some of the same gate reversing devices that help make gates safe, by reversing them when they detect people, can also detect anything that moves into their field of view. If any parts of decorations move in front of any sensors, the gates are designed to reverse and open back up, a process that might continue until the obstruction is cleared away.
2. Nuisance Tripping of Gate Sensors
Nuisance tripping can be especially hazardous. This refers to a break in the power supply to the gated system. In some cases, a misplaced wreath can cause a reversal of the sensors that enable the gate to open and shut. This can lead to various problems, potentially causing other types of damage.
3. Timing Issues with Dual Gates and Swing Gates
If you have dual gates, also referred to as swing gates, then hanging a wreath can be problematic if hung in the center where the two sides part without any adjustment to the system. In this case, the timing may need to be adjusted to coordinate the activation of each side of the gate.
4. Security Breaches Caused by Failure to Close Properly
The last thing you want is your decoration to lead to a security breach. As a result of a malfunctioning system, a gate that is no longer secured or closing properly leaves the property vulnerable to unauthorized entries. The more time that goes by without being addressed, the bigger the opportunity for breaches.
Solutions to Hanging Wreaths Properly on Automated Gates & Entrances
Be aware of the risks when considering where and how your holiday decorations will be attached, especially when it involves a complex automation process. It’s important both to avoid issues and to catch any problems as soon as they occur.
1. Adjust Timing to Avoid Interruptions in Opening and Closing of Gates
Steps to take will depend on the type of gate you have. For swing gates, one possible solution is to have the side with the wreath delay slightly in opening as well as in closing. This enables the side without the wreath to open first to avoid interruptions, as well as to avoid a collision as they close.
2. Keep in Mind Midwestern Weather and Secure Decorations Well
Keep in mind that windy conditions may move the decorations into a different position that could block or trip the sensors as described above. Be sure anything you hang is secured tightly in place, with no parts that could loosen or fall over time.
3. Avoid Blocking Sensors with Decorations
You also want to be sure no sensors will be obstructed as gates open and shut. The more decorations you have, the bigger the chance that something could get in the way of an important component of your system. If you’re unsure you’re hanging things properly, reach out to a gated entry professional who can help out.
Speak with an Automated Security Gate Specialist at EES
Not every gate works the same way. Some open in the center; some don’t. Sensors and other components aren’t always in the same place. That’s why it’s important to reach out to an automated gate specialist with any questions about the proper way to hang your seasonal decorations. The team at Electronic Entry Systems (EES) will help keep your gates in good working order. We can tell you how to avoid potential problems and get you set up with the most secure system available.