gated community installs best gate intercom system at entrance


Key takeaways

  • Automatic gate openers are a great fit for any property and can be used on gates of every size.
  • Tenants use credentials, like a fob or smartphone app, which trigger motors that physically open your gate.
  • The three best automatic gate opener systems are vehicle recognition tag readers, keypads, and smart intercoms.
  • The best gate opener systems have more than one way for a tenant to open the gate.
  • In terms of buying a gate opener, you might look at brands like ButterflyMX, VEVOR, Topens, or HySecurity


Managing a gated property comes with many security considerations, such as choosing the best gate opener access control solution that’s both secure and convenient. Gated community tenants often rate safety as one of their highest priorities. So, how can you provide it without sacrificing convenience? One of the tools that can help you out is an automatic gate opener.

In this post, we list the six best automatic gate openers on the market. Then, we explain what an automatic gate opener is and how it works. Finally, we go over some credential options for your tenants to open gates automatically.

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6 best automatic gate openers

If you’re looking for an automatic gate opener for your property, you know there are various options on the market available for purchase.

But how do you guarantee that you’re choosing the right one for your building?

Here are our picks of the six best automatic gate openers.

The 6 best automatic gate openers are:

  1. ButterflyMX
  2. Mighty Mule EZGO-Solar
  3. HySecurity SlideSmart Slide Gate
  4. TDS2 Heavy Duty Dual Gate Opener
  5. VEVOR Single Swing Gate Opener
  6. Topens PW502 Dual Swing Gate Opener


1. ButterflyMX

ButterflyMX isn’t just an automatic gate opener; it’s a transformative experience for gate access control solutions.

What’s more, ButterflyMX empowers tenants to open gates, doors, and other entry points with their smartphones.

Key features of the ButterflyMX gate access control system include:

  • Video intercom. The ButterflyMX video intercom offers two-way video calling between visitors and tenants. Additionally, it provides high-definition video from a 156° wide-angle camera and clear audio for optimal communication. Further, the intercom is weatherproof and vandal-resistant.
  • 5 GHz WiFi. Reduce installation costs and complexity by connecting the ButterflyMX video intercom directly to the WiFi. After all, many gates aren’t near an internet access point. So, built-in WiFi cuts down on the number of wires required to connect.
  • RFID technology. Give users the chance to use key cards or fobs for the ButterflyMX video intercom. Built-in RFID grants the ability for residents to swipe a card or fob for quick access when their phones are lost or dead.
  • Vehicle access control. Vehicle readers and windshield tags offer hands-free access to every vehicle on your property. Moreover, ButterflyMX vehicle access control is the premier solution for parking decks and garages.
  • Visitor management. Streamline visitor management and automatically verify guests without a tenant even needing to be home.
  • Virtual keys. Create and send temporary virtual keys to guests and service providers with the top-rated ButterflyMX mobile app.
  • Delivery passes. Send convenient delivery passes to couriers like postal workers and UberEats drivers to complete secure deliveries safely and easily.


Best for: Medium to large-scale properties, like multifamily properties, condos, commercial offices, industrial facilities, salon suites, student housing, and more!

Overall, the ButterflyMX access control system is the best choice and a holistic alternative to a simple automatic gate opener.


ButterflyMX CTA


2. Mighty Mule EZGO-Solar

The Mighty Mule EZGO-Solar kit is designed with a maximum weight of 550 pounds and a maximum length of 16 feet.

Other features include:

  • 10W solar
  • Easy, do-it-yourself installation
  • Functionality with many common gate materials, like wood, tube, and chain-link
  • Remote push-button transmitters


Best for: Property managers interested in the energy efficiency that comes with a solar gate opener.

Read the full Mighty Mule review »


3. HySecurity SlideSmart Slide Gate

With a maximum weight of 1,000 pounds and a maximum gate length of 40 feet, the HySecurity SlideSmart gate kits are ready to service properties with all sorts of needs and sizes.

Other HySecurity SlideSmart features include:

  • Solar panel compatibility
  • In-unit log of every gate-opening event
  • Ability to configure settings easily using the in-built display or by hooking the system up to your PC


Best for: Tech-forward property managers who want to start using proptech to manage their gates.


4. TDS2 Heavy Duty Dual Gate Opener

Ghost’s TDS2 gates support gates that are up to 300 pounds and up to 20 feet long.

Other Ghost gate opener features include:

  • Tube brackets for easy installation on tubular gates
  • Remote, wireless gate opener transmitters with a range of up to 1,000 feet
  • Lifetime warranty on gearbox and motor


Best for: Residential or commercial properties that appreciate the functionality and the aesthetics of a swinging gate.


5. VEVOR Automatic Sliding Gate Opener

The VEVOR automatic sliding gate supports gates that are 3,300 pounds and up to 20 feet long.

Other VEVOR features include:

  • IP44 ratings for durability and outdoor use
  • Infrared sensors that stop the gate from closing if an obstruction is detected
  • Quiet gate opening designed with convenience and comfort in mind


Best for: Properties in remote or hilly areas where sliding gates are the most efficient.


Watch how ButterflyMX’s gate intercom works:


6. Topens PW502 Dual Swing Gate Opener

Topens’ dual-swing gate opener supports a maximum weight of 550 pounds and a maximum length of 16 feet.

The features of the PW502 include:

  • Installation options: Choose between pull-to-open and push-to-open
  • Compatibility with extra batteries and solar panels
  • Manual release key that allows the gate to work during power outages


Best for: Properties with a set of two gates that both swing inward.


What is an automatic gate opener?

An automatic gate opener is an electronic component in a gate access control system that unlocks and physically opens and closes a gate so that an entrant doesn’t have to do it manually.

Automatic gate openers operate via a credential, like a:

  • Fob
  • Remote control
  • Key card
  • PIN code entered into a keypad
  • Smartphone/mobile app
  • Identification sticker on a car


Automatic gate openers are useful for gated properties of all sizes. For instance, you might install a remote gate opener on a smaller gate meant exclusively for pedestrian use. Or, your property might host a lot of car traffic, necessitating an electric gate opener for driveways.

Whatever the case, an automatic gate opener will save your tenants time and energy.


How much is an automatic gate motor?

Depending on the type of motor you want and the type of gate on your property, an automatic gate motor can cost anywhere from $500 to $6,000.

We recommend you contact an installer and get your property surveyed to learn more.


An automatic gate system has three components:

  • Credential reader. Tenants present a credential to the access reader to verify their identity.
  • Control panel. The control panel is the central hub of the automatic gate. While the credential reader scans a tenant’s credential, the control panel verifies the data. Then, it instructs the gate’s motors to move.
  • Gate motor. Gates with automatic openers require motors that physically slide or swing the gate open. These auto-gate motors activate to open and close the gate after receiving signals from the control panel.


How do automatic gate openers work?

Automatic gate openers work by reading a resident’s access credential. Then, the control panel signals the gate motors to activate, which use gears to swing or slide open the gate. As a result, the gate opens without a tenant having to physically open it themselves.

There are two main types of gates:

  • Sliding gate. A sliding gate moves side to side along a track. If motorized, a small gear is added to the gate’s track to automate the process.
  • Swinging gate. A swinging gate swings outwards or inwards, much like how a door would. However, gates usually swing inwards so that they don’t hit vehicles or pedestrians when they enter.


You have a few options when it comes to motorizing an automatic swing gate opener. You can install a rotating arm that mechanically pushes and pulls your gate open.

Alternatively, you can install an underground motor that’s less visible. Underground motors are more expensive, but you might find them more aesthetically pleasing.


Can you make an existing gate automatic?

Yes, you can easily add motors to an existing gate and make it automatic.


How are electric gates powered?

You can choose between a variety of power sources for an automatic gate opener. Solar, battery, and electronic systems are all popular options. You might pick one power source over another based on your property’s needs, budget, and layout.

For example, if you want to save money, you might install a solar-powered gate opener. This way, you’ll reduce your property’s electricity bills — and you’ll be fighting climate change, while you’re at it. Just remember to install a battery backup for rainy days!


Types of automatic gate opener systems

The type of automatic gate opener system you should choose depends on your property’s needs and the gate access credential method you want. Automatic gate openers use all kinds of credential systems to verify tenants’ identities.

But above all, you know your property best. So, only you can choose the best option for your gated community.

So, which type of automatic gate opener system is best for your property?

The best automatic gate openers facilitate a convenient access experience for tenants while enhancing security for your property.

The three best kinds of electric gate openers for driveways are:


Vehicle recognition tag reader

A vehicle recognition tag is a small sticker that a tenant places on their dashboard. Your gate’s credential reader scans it when a car approaches the gate. The best part is that tenants can simply stay inside their cars, which is convenient for nighttime or bad weather situations — and a time-saver in any case.

Although these stickers are convenient for tenants, an automatic gate opener that depends entirely on them has no way to detect or let in visitors. So, your best bet is to use vehicle recognition tags in conjunction with another system.



Automatic gate openers with keypads are great because you don’t have to pass out physical credentials. As such, you don’t need to keep track of them whenever a tenant moves in or out, or distribute new ones when tenants lose them.

For example, installing a ButterflyMX keypad at your gate will allow tenants to open the gate from their smartphones. What’s more, it lets tenants issue PIN codes to their guests so they can let themselves in. Tenants can set these PINs to expire or only work at certain times or on certain days, maximizing convenience and flexibility.


Smart intercom

When it comes to managing gate access, the best option is installing a smart intercom that lets tenants open gates with their smartphones.

With a smart gate opener, tenants simply have to swipe on their phones to open the gate. Best of all, because the system is smartphone-based, tenants can open gates from wherever they have an internet connection, even when they’re not on the property.

Smart intercoms also support other ways of opening gates:

  • Scanning a key card or fob
  • Voice commands via Siri or Alexa
  • Haptic/3D touch on apps from the home screen
  • Tapping on smartwatches that are compatible with the intercom app


What’s more, smart intercoms connect to WiFi, so they can integrate with other internet-powered proptech devices that your property uses.


butterflymx best gate entry system

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Ferdison Cayetano

I’m a proptech enthusiast from New Jersey who’s looking forward to the innovations that will revolutionize real estate.

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