Atlas Group
Car park access barriers
Sliding security gates
Automatic keypad entry gate
Automatic arm access gate
Underfloor motorised driveway gates
specialists in the installation and maintenance of automatic gate operating systems, access automation and parking control barriers for over 25 years

Hydraulic Versus Electromechanical

Atlas Group generally recommends electromechanical operating systems in preference to hydraulic. Our advice is based upon long experience and takes into account the following considerations.


  • 1. Quality:
    Hydraulic systems are prone to leakage of contaminating fluid and therefore are fundamentally environmentally unfriendly.
  • 2. Reliability:
    Electro-mechanical systems are simpler and involve fewer parts so are inherently more reliable.
  • 3. Maintenance:
    If not maintained properly, hydraulic systems will run low on fluid which will render them inoperable and may damage or destroy components. This is not an issue for electromechanical systems which require no routine servicing.
  • 4. Performance:
    The viscosity of hydraulic fluid may vary with temperature, contamination etc. giving rise to performance inconsistencies over time.
  • 5. Costs:
    The motors employed in electromechanical are necessarily more substantial than for hydraulic systems. Small, much cheaper high speed motors are often used in hydraulic systems because the fluid acts as a "gearing" medium. Mass production, driven by strong demand has rendered electromechanical systems less expensive.
  • 6. Ease Of Use:
    The operating principles of electromechanical systems are obvious and they are generally easier to install being integrated in design and function.
  • 7. Components:
    In high quality electromechanical systems, all moving parts are immersed in an oil bath, including the motor. Contrary to claims made by suppliers of hydraulic components, this is not the case with hydraulic systems.
  • 8. Noise Levels:
    High quality electromechanical systems are invariably quieter than their hydraulic equivalent. This difference in perceptible noise may be acceptable when new but will become more marked in hydraulic systems as components wear.
  • 9. Operational Reliability:
    Contrary to claims made by some hydraulic equipment suppliers, gear trains are highly reliable and we have never replaced a drive gear in more than 25 years of business. The vast majority of our electromechanical systems never require major attention, and many have been installed for more than 20 years.
  • 10. Operational Response:
    The current sensing circuits used in the latest electromechanical systems are more reliable and much faster acting than hydraulic relief valves that can only react as quickly as fluid flows through the pipe work.
  • 11. Avoid Cutting Corners:
    Our own experience is that good quality hydraulic and electromechanical automation systems are extremely reliable these days but cheaper equipment of both types, if incorrectly installed, can be unpredictable. Unfortunately our engineers are called out equally as frequently these days to repair each type where corners have been cut to reduce costs.