The APeX control board was developed by Linear (now Nice/Nortek) in 2008, at the time it was one of the most advanced gate operator control boards available. Now, 14 years later, the APeX board still stands out in its capabilities for automatic gate controls. Over the years many dealers have found persistent issues with this board that dealers understand and know how to manage. We will go over one of the most common and what solutions can be had in the field or what Rotary Gate Systems has done to mitigate it before shipping.
EN codes are the APeX controllers primary way of signaling an entrapment condition with the system. These codes range from EN00, to EN 14. We will discuss each of these codes, their meanings, and possible solutions in periodic blog posts. Comments and questions are welcomed and encouraged to help you understand the system you are working on as thoroughly as possible.
The EN 00 code is an alert for multiple obstruction inputs within a certain amount of time. This code has become more prevalent with the introduction and installation of monitored obstruction device requirements in 2016 with additions to the UL325 automated gate standards. "Two reversals on single gate, or on either dual gate" is the standard trigger for an EN 00, what this means is that any controller, whether in a single or dual gate setup, that gets 2 reversals before reaching a limit switch or being reset will lockout and display the EN00 code. At this point the only way to clear the error is to reset the controller.
Common causes for this error are:
Physical obstruction in the path of the gate in either or both directions.
Open/Close current set too low for the length, height, and weight of the gate.
Loss of communication with wireless obstruction transmitter/receiver setup.
Monitored device not installed on newer systems (2016 and newer).
Monitored device using the wrong monitoring method. (Several methods are used for monitoring obstruction devices, this will be covered in another post)
Check the full path of the gate in both directions, ensure that tree branches, bushes, stems, or other landscaping are clear both in front and behind the gate for the full length of travel; this includes sand, rocks, sticks, or other debris in the "V" track of the gate if installed. If you have a "floating" cantilever gate, ensure the rollers (either 7" covered rollers, or enclosed truck assemblies) are in proper working condition. Many times bearings on either type can become worn out with little or no warning or signs of damage but can put the gate in a bind.
Open and close current settings are programmed limitations for amperage draw on the motor. If the system has an issue that makes the gate harder to move, the board will allow the DC motor to draw more amperage, which translates to more force being applied to the gate to move it. Setting the open/close current prevents damage to the gate, operator, and anything that may be in the path of the gate in the event of a malfunction. This can also have the unintended effect of giving an error when everything looks clear, but isn't. This is an indication that rollers, bearings, or the track are either worn out or have something that is causing drag and need to be replaced or cleaned.
Wireless transmitters/receivers for obstruction devices are a contact sensor designed to prevent damage or injury from gate travel, these devices also use batteries (usually on the transmitter side) to send data to the receiver for proper operation. If nothing is in the path of the gate, and the safety edge is in good/working condition, it may be an indication that the batteries need to be replaced; especially if it happens at the end of travel on the side furthest away from the receiver is a good indication of a low battery.
All gate operators installed after 2016 must have monitored obstruction devices installed on the system. Without these devices installed, or with the incorrect devices installed, the system will see an error and lock out. The APeX board uses the 10k monitoring method, anything other than a 10k monitored device will not work and will cause the system to not operate.
As always, if you're not familiar with the system, or if you've exhausted all troubleshooting steps without a resolution to the problem, contact tech support at 877-331-4747 for Rotary Gate Systems gate operators.