Let’s face it: Nobody wants to alight from the car in the middle of a cold winter night to simply open a gate to their compound to drive in. This becomes more dreaded if you have any kind of mobility issue, or are just plain tired after a long day.
At home, securing all doors when you leave home is a task that spends time and energy, hence not amusing. However, you can address this by eliminating some manual processes at home. And with the technological advancements, some manual processes should not bother you any longer. As such, using an automatic gate opener, you can conveniently open and close your gate from the comfort of your car’s seat, or even a couch in the house without you having to move muscles to do it.
However, this comes with a cost, and hence the need to look for the best, in terms of cost and user-friendliness. This is where the solar gate opener comes in. The solar automatic gate opener makes the concern about the gates the last thing in your mind, even in places where there is no electricity, or during outages, with the only cost being the initial installation cost.
By harnessing the sun’s energy, solar gate openers provide convenient access to your property as well as unparalleled security.
Types of Solar Gate Openers
Solar gate openers work like the typical, electrical gate openers and most of them typically function in the same way. The only difference lies in their source of energy, power, and capacity. There are typically three types of solar gate openers depending on how the gate opens as follows;
- Sliding kit gate openers; these are usually installed on the gate’s wall or hinge and slide in and out in unison with the same gate.
- Swing gate kits; these are used for single swing gates and open gates outwards. They have an underground sensor that is responsible for the opening and closing gate depending on presence of motion. Some swing gate kits come with a master unit and a lever arm which allows you to control the gate using a remote control or keypad.
- Dual swing gate kit. This is used for gates that have two entryways. They have an underground sensor that will automatically open the gate as soon as the vehicle is near, and closes once the vehicle is out of the detector’s range. This kind of openers has emergency release kits to enable you to open the gate in case of power failure.
While there are lots of different types of solar gate openers available on the market, choosing the right for your needs can help make your life simpler. In this article, we’re going to review some of the best solar gate openers out there and what to look for when you’re out shopping for the best one for you. So, let’s jump right in:
Best Solar Gate Openers
- Ghost Controls TSS1XP Heavy-Duty Solar Single Automatic Gate Opener
- Mighty Mule MM371W Automatic Gate Opener
- TOPENS AD8S Automatic Gate Opener
- USAutomatic 020320 Sentry 300 Commercial Grade Automatic Gate Opener
- ECO-WORTHY Dual Swing Gate Opener
- TOPENS A5S Automatic Gate Opener
- Mighty Mule MM571W Heavy Duty Smart Gate Opener
- E8 400MM Stainless Automatic Gate Opener
- ALEKO AC1400NOR Chain Driven Sliding Gate Opener
- Ghost Controls DS1U Automatic Gate Opener
|Product Name||Modes/Type||Solar Wattage||Max Capacity||Max Gate Length||Remote Controller||Warranty||Weight|
|Ghost Controls TSS1XP|
|Single Swing||10W||900 lbs||20 ft||Yes||1-year||26 lbs|
|Mighty Mule MM371W||Single Swing||10W||550 lbs||16 ft||Yes||1-year||18.2 lbs|
|TOPENS AD8S||Dual Swing||20W||850 lbs||18 ft||Yes||1-year||47.9 lbs|
|USAutomatic 020320 Sentry 300||Dual Swing||6W||400 lbs||20 ft||No||3-year||34 lbs|
|ECO-WORTHY Dual Swing Gate Opener||Dual Swing||20W||1320 lbs||16 ft||Yes||1-year||N/A|
|TOPENS A5S||Single Swing||20W||550 lbs||16 ft||Yes||1-year||26.8 lbs|
|Mighty Mule MM571W||Single Swing||10W||850 lbs||18 ft||Yes||18-month||28.6 lbs|
|E8 400MM Stainless||Dual Swing||20W||1200 lbs||26 ft||Yes||1-year||41.5 lbs|
|ALEKO AC1400NOR Chain Driven||Single Slide||1400 lbs||40 ft||Yes||2-year||27 lbs|
|Ghost Controls DS1U Automatic Gate Opener||Dual Swing||900 lbs||20 ft||Yes||Limited Lifetime||24.3 lbs|
Top on our list of the best solar gate openers is the Ghost Controls TSS1XP, which is an easy to install option specially designed for Vehicular swing gates.
The TSS1XP is designed powerful enough to handle heavy-duty swing gates of up to 900 pounds and those that are up to 20 feet wide.
This automatic gate opener is powered by a 12 Volt lead acid battery. You can recharge the battery either using the included 10W Monocrystalline Solar panel or AC transformer. This makes it a convenient and reliable solar gate opener, especially since it doesn’t rely on your home’s electricity to operate.
Another standout feature of the Ghost Controls TSS1XP is the long range remote control, which allows up to 1000-feet reception range. This allows you to conveniently open or close your gate even when you’re comfortably seated in your car just by the press of a button. The remote control features three buttons, allowing you to operate three different gates.
When it comes to safety controls, this solar gate opener features GhostCode and SafeCode technologies. For instance, GhostCode helps protect your system against hackers by allowing only authorized remote sensors and transmitters to activate your gate system.
The SafeCode technology, on the other hand, helps limit the force with which the gate opens to prevent it from getting damaged. This helps ensure smooth opening and closing of the gate and prevent injuries to passers-by.
Another cool thing about the Ghost Controls TSS1XP is its DIY installation, meaning you don’t have to seek professional assistance to install it on your gate. It comes with tube gate brackets, which enables you to easily install it securely within minutes and enjoy the convenience of an automatic gate opener right away.
Besides that, this heavy-duty gate opener comes with a lifetime assurance for the motor and gearbox, ensuring unmatched reliability for years to come.
- Supports gates of up to 900 pounds and 20 feet swing gates
- The remote offers a long reception range of up to 1000 feet
- Comes with solar panel battery
- Easy DIY installation
- Lifetime warranty
- Prevents unauthorized remote control and system hacks and breaches
- Remote can be used for up to 3 gates
- Not waterproof or dust resistant
Coming second on our list is the MM371W Automatic Gate Opener by Mighty Mule, that offers unrivaled convenience when it comes to controlling and monitoring your gate remotely with its smart features.
From its list of amazing features, one that stands out is its smart capability, which allows you to connect it to your smartphone wirelessly and control your gate from anywhere using the Mighty Mule App. This comes handy especially, if you don’t want the hassles of using a remote controller. However, you may have to purchase the Mighty Mule Wireless Connectivity kit separately.
This solar gate opener comes equipped with a powerful motor that can handle single swing gates of up to 550 pounds or 16 feet long. It works great with all types of swing gates including vinyl, wooden, steel, and even iron gates.
The MM371W Automatic Gate Opener can be operated using both solar and AC power. It comes with a Mighty Mule 10W solar panel but you may have to purchase a 12-Volt automotive battery separately. This helps ensure you have power backup.
What’s more? This automatic gate opener operates 40 percent faster and more efficiently compared to its competitors. As such, you can expect it to deliver solid performance whether you’re opening or closing your gate.
When it comes to ease of installation, this gate opener features a complete kit with all the necessary mounting hardware. It also includes an installation manual and DVD, which helps you mount it on your own hassle-free. You also get unlimited access to 24-hour technical support to ensure you install it successfully.
- Comes with a one-year manufacturer warranty
- Easy DIY Installation
- Waterproof and Durable construction
- Easy to follow installation guide
- 24-hour technical support
- Available for dual swing gates
- Convenient control from smartphone
- Backup battery not included
- Reception range could be improve
Next up is the TOPENS AD8S Automatic Gate Opener that features two energy-efficient yet powerful motors, making it perfect for heavy-duty dual swing gates.
This solar gate opener features strong and durable swing arms that provide enough power to move heavy gates of up to 850 pounds or up to 18 feet long. It is designed perfect for all types of dual swing gates including vinyl, wood and steel driveway gates. It’s also ideal for chain-link, tube, and panel-shaped gates. The solid aluminum build also ensures longer operating life with minimal maintenance needed.
The AD8S is powered by a 24-V battery, which is sold separately. It comes with a 20W solar panel that allows you to use the gate opener without relying on AC electricity. It is also loaded with smart technology features including remote control, electric gate lock, and wireless keypad for added convenience and improved performance.
Form improved safety and protection, this solar gate opener features a stop and reverse mode in case it encounters any obstruction in the path. There is also an auto-close feature, which you can set the gate to automatically close in 3 seconds or all the way to 130 seconds after it opens. For easy adjustments, this opener comes with a reliable electromagnetism limit switch. You shouldn’t have to worry in case you lose your remote or when there is a power outage, thanks to the 90-degree manual release key.
The AD8S solar gate opener boasts an easy DIY installation, since it requires no additional welding or high-voltage electrical wiring. Moreover, it comes with all the essential mounting hardware plus an easy to follow guide for hassle-free installation. You can install the opener either in a Push-to-Open or Pull-to-Open style, enabling your gate to open outwards or inwards.
- Remarkable customer service
- One year warranty cover and free 30-day return
- Easy DIY installation with easy-to-follow instructions
- Comes with a solar panel
- Two installation styles for enhanced customization
- Great safety and security controls
- Supports heavy-duty gates
- Suitable for all gate materials
- Backup Battery sold separately
If you’re looking for an incredibly reliable solar gate opener for commercial use, you can’t go wrong with the USAutomatic 020320 Sentry 300.
This gate opener is designed ideal for gates up to 20 feet long or weighing up to 800 pounds. It works great with single and double leaf models.
It features a solid build quality that includes a sealed circuit board, which helps protect it against insects and moisture damage. This helps improve its durability as well as ensure solid performance.
One cool thing about the USAutomatic 020320 Sentry 300 is the fact that it can operate only using solar power, making it one of the most energy-efficient gate openers out there. It comes with a 12-V battery that you can charge using an AC adapter or the included solar panel. This helps eliminate the worry of running out of battery power during winter when the sun rarely comes out.
Also, it features a remote controller that’s powered by CR123 batteries. Using the remote, you can conveniently open and close your gate as fast as 16 seconds regardless of your gate material.
For enhanced safety, this solar gate opener boasts a stop and reverse feature that prevents it from closing if it detects an obstacle on the path. This helps prevent the risk of injury or even damage to your vehicle.
What’s more? It comes with a 3-year warranty and all the essential mounting hardware, which allows you to easily install it on your own.
- Incredibly energy efficient
- Offers unparalleled security and safety
- Solid build quality ensures it lasts for a long time
- Sealed circuit board helps prevent water damage
- Compatible with all types of dual swing gates materials
- Opens and closes in only 16 seconds
- It has a responsive control box
- Can be expensive for some
- Doesn’t come with batteries
- Could be made quieter
The Eco-worthy dual swing solar gate opener is specially designed perfect for those looking for a solar gate opener that’s easy to use out-of-the-box and delivers heavy-duty performance.
This solar gate opener boasts a strong construction made of a premium 202 stainless steel that helps ensure improved durability. It is corrosion resistant and IP66 rated, which ensures it is properly sealed and protected against dust and water damage. This makes it suitable for outdoor use even in harsh weather conditions.
This dual swing gate opener can handle heavy-duty gates that weigh up to 1320 pounds and are up to 16 feet wide. It is also suitable for driveway double gates. You may also love that this unit operates on a 12-volt battery and comes with a 20 watts polycrystalline solar panel, meaning you don’t have to use AC electricity.
The solar gate opener boasts a soft start and stop feature, which limits the speed or force it exerts on the gate when closing or opening, preventing your gate from getting damaged. There is also an adjustable auto-close feature, which you can set the timer to close the gate automatically from 0 to 99 seconds.
It features multiple control options, letting you control your gate using a code lock, remote controller, or even manually. Using the remote control, you can open and close your gate even when you’re 50 meter away.
On top of that, it is backed by a 12-month warranty and comes with a detailed installation manual, which can come handy to ensure you properly mount it on your gate.
- Can handle heavy-duty dual swing gates efficiently
- Made of premium material for durability
- Withstands harsh weather conditions
- IP66 rated protection against water, dust, and corrosion
- Provides improved convenience using an adjustable auto-close timer
- Ensures long-lasting performance with the soft start and soft stop feature
- Provides multiple control options
- May require professional assistance for successful installation
Topens A5S is designed for single swing gates that weigh about 550 lbs. and 16 feet long. It is suitable for all types of single swing gates, and perfect for driveway gates made of steel, wood, vinyl, and shaped as a panel, tube, and chain-link. Topens A5S is suitable for use at your home, business, courtyard, pasture, farm, and ranch.
This opener uses advanced technology with two optional installation styles including a pull-to-open and push-to-open. This enables the gate to open inwards or outwards. Additionally, A5S is a soft start and soft stop opener, a good design for the single swing gates. It does not require any extra welding when installing, which makes mounting it a breeze.
The opener is equipped with a long-lasting motor which contributes to its safety and minimizing breakdowns. It comes with an emergency release key in case of power outage or loss of remote control. Further, it comes packaged with a 20W solar panel and 24 DC low power consumption motor. This enables the opener to operate 24 hours, and even when there is a power outage.
Topens A5S features an electric lock system that automatically locks the gate once the door closes. Has a vehicle exit wand.
It comes with a remote control with an adjustable auto-close time for added convenience and improved security. To ensure enhanced safety, this gate opener features a built-in stop and reverse mode in case of obstruction. It also has a microchip rolling code for remote keys.
Another great thing about the Topens A5S is that it’s backed by a 12-month warranty and free 30-day product return.
- A5S has an efficient controller: It can keep the gate opener working for about one week giving it 10 to 15 cycles.
- The advanced microchip rolling code and the customs 4-button remote ensures additional security.
- Dual AC-DC power operated; can use the automotive or marine type battery with solar panel capable of running a work period in case of AC power failure
- Has an emergency release key in case of power outage or loss of remote control
- It is affordable
- Comes with an extra push-to-open unit
- Easy DIY installation with all the installation hardware provided
- It does not come with an instructional DVD which is necessary.
- Does not provide the appropriate 12AH battery in the package hence you will buy it separately.
The Mighty Mule MM571W is designed for heavy-duty single swing gates of up to 18 feet in length or a maximum weight of 850 pounds. It is compatible with all kinds of gate types, such as ornamental, chain link, vinyl, and wood. The opener has a DIY installation manual that helps you set up the device quickly.
You can easily control the Mighty Mule MM571W using a remote or Smartphone for added convenience. It is designed to use the MMS 100 Wireless Connectivity Kit, which allows you to control your gate from as far as half a mile from your home using your Smartphone.
It comes with a Mighty Mule 10-watt solar panel, allowing you to operate it on solar power alone. The Mighty Mule comes with an eighteen-month limited warranty and technical support.
- The smart gate opener feature provides the ability to control your gate from anywhere.
- It is available in 10, 20, and 30-watt solar packages.
- Easy DIY installation
- Comes equipped with detailed installation instructions and online how-to videos
- Unlimited access to 24-hour technical support
- The MMS100 Wireless Connectivity Kit is sold separately
The E8 400MM stainless Automatic gate Opener is a cheap high quality heavy-duty solar gate opener designed for dual swing gates that are 1200 lbs. heavy and 26 feet long. The opener has been designed for installations on pull-to-open or push-to-open gates and you can operate it using a remote control. You can use it on a variety of gates including chain link, farm tube, aluminum, and iron gates. The gate opener comes with a screw-driven type system that increases its reliability.
The E8 400MM features a 20-watt solar panel and manual release key that helps ensure continued operation in the case of power blackouts. It also has a dual AC/DC configuration for battery backup.
It comes as a complete package including all the essential components such as a 3 dual button remote transmitters along with a single 7Ah lead-acid battery model that makes it run completely independent of the power grid. It has an easy-to-use control box and comes with a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty.
- Easy installation; It has a detailed installation manual
- Affordable price
- Great capacity
- Solar compatible; It has a battery backup system that will provide the full opening service 24/7
- Enhanced reliability due to screw driven type system
- Remote control operated.
- It is smooth and quiet
• Only for dual swing gate models
The ALEKO AC1400NOR Sliding Gate Opener is a lightweight automatic gate opener made with an aluminum alloy chassis. This opener is designed specifically for long, heavy gates.
It can operate gates of up to 1400 pounds in weight and 40 feet in length. It is suitable for a variety of gates such as chain link, farm tube, aluminum, and iron gates at home, farm, or ranch.
For the safety of your baby and pets, and other intruding objects, this opener comes with an obstruction detection feature that makes it stop if the gate senses anything in its path preventing accident and possible damage.
The ALEKO AC1400NOR supports up to 100 remotes which are programmable as well as erasable, making it an excellent gate opener if you have a high number of people accessing your property. The remotes are able to send signals to the control box at high efficiency. The opener comes with a 2-year warranty.
- Comes with an obstruction sensor that stops or reverses the gate
- Quality customer support
- Efficient sliding gate opener
- Is made up of aluminum alloy chassis that is corrosion resistant while still being light enough.
- Ideal for multi-users (up to 100 remote controllers)
- Challenging to install especially for first-timers
- There are reported cases of rust
- Magnet switches may not attach to the gate properly
The Ghost Controls DS1U is designed and optimized for decorative or tubular gates that weigh up to 900 lbs. and 20 feet long. It is perfect for installation on any swing-type gate including custom iron, tubular, chain link, or plantation style gates.
This opener is ideal for heavier gates that exceed the maximum gate weight rating of Ghost Controls TSS1 Operator due to longer length of operator arm.
The Ghost Controls DS1U is an easy to install opener. It comes with a DIY installation manual and all the necessary installation hardware and fasteners to ensure easy installation.
This solar gate opener can run on a 12V battery, making it a 24-hour use opener. It has a separate lockable battery box, which helps eliminate potential acid leaks damaging the system control board. The Ghost Controls DS1U comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty on motor and gear assembly.
- Quiet and Fast Post Mount
- Easy DIY installation
- It has a 5-Button Remote Transmitter
- It is a quiet and fast opener
- Has a Limited Lifetime Warranty on motor and gear assembly
- Has estate gate brackets for decorative gates
- The Solar Panel Kit and battery are purchased separately
- Not ideal for solid-panel gates
Buying Guide: Thing To Look For
There are lots of solar gate openers on the market to choose from. However, the different solar gate openers vary greatly in terms of build quality, functionality, performance and even prices, which can make finding the right one pretty challenging for you.
And just like any other product, there are several things you should take into consideration when you’re out shopping for the best solar gate opener. Below are some of the key features you should look for in a solar gate opener for increased durability and improved convenience.
- Type of your gate
As earlier mentioned, different solar gate openers are designed suitable for different types of gates. For instance, some solar gate openers are meant for dual swing or slide gates while others for single swing or slide gates. Also make sure the unit you choose can support the size and weight of your gate.
- Type of construction material
While different solar gate opener models are made of different materials, you should make sure the one you choose is made of durable materials such as premium 202 stainless steel. This helps ensure your solar gate opener can withstand harsh weather conditions like hailstorms, heavy rain, and hot sun. You may also want to choose one that has an IP66 rated protection for improved durability and resistance against corrosion.
- Solar panel efficiency
Different solar gate openers use different solar panels with some using 10W panels or 20W solar panels while others are designed to use multiple panels to increase efficiency. As such, you may need a model that runs on multiple panels with high wattage especially if you live in a place where there is less sunlight.
- Control options
Another equally important factor to consider when buying a solar gate opener is the kind of controls it provides as some provide only a single option while others give you multiple options. For enhanced convenience and reliability, consider a model that allows you to control and monitor your gate using a remote controller, a manual key, and even a code lock.
The remote control should have a long reception range, so you can conveniently control your gate from the comfort of your living room or without getting outside your car. If you have several gates in your home, you should be able to control all from the same remote controller. The remote key and code lock comes handy when you’ve misplaced your remote or when the unit doesn’t have power.
- Noise level
The best solar gate opener should operate smoothly and quietly. This helps avoid alerting those who are nearby when you’re getting out or returning back to your home. That said, be sure that you choose a solar gate opener with the lowest noise level.
- Safety and protection controls
It is important that you choose a model with all the necessary safety features in place to protect your gate from getting damaged and reduce the risk of injuries to passers-by and damages to your vehicle.
One of the safety features your unit should have is an auto-close timer that helps close the gate automatically in case you forget closing it. Another feature is the motion-arrest that helps your gate close and open smoothly and gently, preventing it from getting damaged. Your gate opener should also be able to detect obstacles on the path to reduce the risk of injuries to your pets, children, and even vehicle damage.
- Security features
The best solar gate opener should come equipped with the appropriate security features to protect it against hacking and breaches. This ensures only authorized remotes can control your gate.
- Ease of Installation
To ensure an easy DIY installation, you may want a model that comes with all the necessary mounting hardware as well as an easy-to-follow installation manual or how-to videos. It’s also necessary to ensure that the manufacturer provides 24-hour technical support in case you encounter a problem while installing the gate opener yourself.
1. Why should you buy a solar gate opener?
With a solar gate opener, you will not have to worry when there are power outages, or live in an area that has no electricity connection. Additionally they require minimal maintenance and installation is easy. Solar gate openers are very cost effective.
2. Are solar gate openers compatible with all types of gates?
Every solar opener is designed for gates with defined specifications in terms of weight and length. The higher the load capacity of the opener, the more compatible it is with different gate sizes. Additionally, some openers are designed for sliding gates and others for swing gates.
3. How is a solar gate opener installed?
Different brands have different installation processes depending on the installation kit provided. Every model comes with an installation manual, some on DVDs, printed copies and others online. Most of them have a simple DIY installation process and manufacturers provide technical support where necessary.
4. Why does my automatic gate open by itself?
An automatic gate will open by itself mainly because of a malfunctioning motherboard. Another reason would be because of debris or remote batteries. It is recommended that you contact the manufacturer, especially if on warranty or seek professional assistance. Avoid troubleshooting if you have no technical knowhow.
5. Is it possible to override an automatic gate?
Automatic solar gate openers can be overridden when there is power outage or a failed remote control. This involves the use of the manual key which will allow manual opening and closing of the gate, by-passing the automatic mode.
As you’ve seen from our review, there are lots of great solar gate openers out there that you can choose from. However, for the best performance, you should choose the right type of solar gate opener that’s suitable for the size and weight of your gate. For improved convenience, be sure to consider a model that’s durable, energy-efficient, has safety and security controls, and offers multiple control options.