Best chip door

Meowmee

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I am looking for a microchip door for my studio door to stop Quinn from getting in there and using Merlin’s litter box. It has to be sturdy because Quinn has already broken every cat door we have except an aluminum one with a flap and metal closure😹. The studio pet door is currently covered with cardboard. M has been in isolation again due to runs but will be out of it soon, he needs to be integrated to the house but still be able to get in to the studio to use his litter box. The original door is a petsafe I think, a smallish one, I hope I can get one the same size so I don’t have to do a major installation.

I need one that lets only one cat in and out and stops the other from going in, and I need a collar with activator until I can get Merlin chipped. I have looked at a few but they all seem to have some bad reviews and they are all made of plastic as well which I think my kitties may break.

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I use the sureflap petdoor The SureFlap Microchip Pet Door for large cats & small dogs. I've never had any issues and am on my second one. The first one lasted three years of daily use by three cats before the mechanism stopped working properly but it is also on an exterior door so it is exposed to weather. The batteries have last 6-9 months before replacing (don't use rechargeable batteries, they last days). Ypu can get collar tags to use if your cat isn't chipped.We've never had a raccoon figure it out and it's never budged with my 14 pound male trying to push through.

I did originally try their cat door version but it was a smidgen too small for my boy. There also is a connect version with an app. When I replaced the door I opted against it because of battery life and weak signal in that part of my house.
 
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Meowmee

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I use the sureflap petdoor The SureFlap Microchip Pet Door for large cats & small dogs. I've never had any issues and am on my second one. The first one lasted three years of daily use by three cats before the mechanism stopped working properly but it is also on an exterior door so it is exposed to weather. The batteries have last 6-9 months before replacing (don't use rechargeable batteries, they last days). Ypu can get collar tags to use if your cat isn't chipped.We've never had a raccoon figure it out and it's never budged with my 14 pound male trying to push through.

I did originally try their cat door version but it was a smidgen too small for my boy. There also is a connect version with an app. When I replaced the door I opted against it because of battery life and weak signal in that part of my house.
I really want something that will last for 10 years or really forever, I don’t want to have to keep dong expensive replacements. I wonder if there is one though🧐 I looked at that one and it had both good but also some pretty bad reviews on Amazon. I forgot what the problems were now. And I think that one is plastic, I am worried my Siamese will break it for sure😂 also I can’t figure out if any of them will let one pet in out but stop another.
 
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Kieka

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The one I mention you have the sensor side mounted to be the direction you want to limit access. It will only allow the cat you program it for through (either by implanted chip or collar tag). For my home, it allows my cats to go through but keeps out neighborhood strays, raccoons, possums and any other critter that wants in. I have mine programmed with a curfew to allow my cats through during daylight but it doesnt let them go outside at night (I have it set to allow in whenever in case someone escapes or I am not home but you can set it to just be locked both directions, one direction or always allow access for permitted animals).

As I said, my boy is 14 pounds. He is a massive strong cat and he's never been able to break through the lock. Here are my two for scale....

20191125_193713.jpg


I have had many cat doors over the last 30 some odd years and there are two truths.

1) All pet doors are plastic. The animal wants to see through before going through, simple safety instinct. A solid door of anything other than plastic doesn't allow that so they are less likely to use it. Sticking their head into unknown potential danger is asking for trouble. Glass is impractical and dangerous which leaves plastic. If you were able to find a metal or wooden door your cat would be unlikely to use it. Not to mention the plastic is easy to clean for sanitary purposes.

2) If there is any mechanical functionality to the door you will not find one that will last 10 years. Simple mechanics. Moving parts break down over time and electronics exposed to weather will break eventually. To meet the criteria of the door being smart enough to only allow one cat through you have to have electronics and mechanical parts. They will break within the next 10 years. They just will, no way around it. The SureFlap does have a warranty, mine broke exactly one month outside warranty and I wasn't paying attention before it expired. If you got one and it broke within warranty you could ask for a replacement or service and theoretically extend the life of your purchase. Like a tire warranty where the dealership tells you to run over a nail so you can claim the warranty before it expires and get a new tire under warranty..... (seriously, my tire place has told me to do that). Even if you were to get a regular flap pet door without any mechanics or electronics; they will only last maybe 10 years before the hinge breaks or the door itself cracks etc.

Basically, to meet your requirements you should reconsider you expectations.

I have had the SureFlap CAT door and that one did not perform to expectations. All sorts of problems from minor annoyances to total breakdown. I am on my second PET door version and no complaints about either of them. One thing to remember with reviews is most people complain when annoyed but fewer people speak up when happy. Also, Amazon has problems with counterfeit items so it is possible that some people got counterfeit. It's one of the reasons I always make sure the shipper is the correct company when I order through Amazon
 
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Meowmee

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The one I mention you have the sensor side mounted to be the direction you want to limit access. It will only allow the cat you program it for through (either by implanted chip or collar tag). For my home, it allows my cats to go through but keeps out neighborhood strays, raccoons, possums and any other critter that wants in. I have mine programmed with a curfew to allow my cats through during daylight but it doesnt let them go outside at night (I have it set to allow in whenever in case someone escapes or I am not home but you can set it to just be locked both directions, one direction or always allow access for permitted animals).

As I said, my boy is 14 pounds. He is a massive strong cat and he's never been able to break through the lock. Here are my two for scale....

View attachment 317415

I have had many cat doors over the last 30 some odd years and there are two truths.

1) All pet doors are plastic. The animal wants to see through before going through, simple safety instinct. A solid door of anything other than plastic doesn't allow that so they are less likely to use it. Sticking their head into unknown potential danger is asking for trouble. Glass is impractical and dangerous which leaves plastic. If you were able to find a metal or wooden door your cat would be unlikely to use it. Not to mention the plastic is easy to clean for sanitary purposes.

2) If there is any mechanical functionality to the door you will not find one that will last 10 years. Simple mechanics. Moving parts break down over time and electronics exposed to weather will break eventually. To meet the criteria of the door being smart enough to only allow one cat through you have to have electronics and mechanical parts. They will break within the next 10 years. They just will, no way around it. The SureFlap does have a warranty, mine broke exactly one month outside warranty and I wasn't paying attention before it expired. If you got one and it broke within warranty you could ask for a replacement or service and theoretically extend the life of your purchase. Like a tire warranty where the dealership tells you to run over a nail so you can claim the warranty before it expires and get a new tire under warranty..... (seriously, my tire place has told me to do that). Even if you were to get a regular flap pet door without any mechanics or electronics; they will only last maybe 10 years before the hinge breaks or the door itself cracks etc.

Basically, to meet your requirements you should reconsider you expectations.

I have had the SureFlap CAT door and that one did not perform to expectations. All sorts of problems from minor annoyances to total breakdown. I am on my second PET door version and no complaints about either of them. One thing to remember with reviews is most people complain when annoyed but fewer people speak up when happy. Also, Amazon has problems with counterfeit items so it is possible that some people got counterfeit. It's one of the reasons I always make sure the shipper is the correct company when I order through Amazon
Your cats are gorgeous, two beautiful snowshoes❤ He is huge! Maybe bigger than Merlin who is 15lbs too, but obese.
I think I was looking at the cat door version on that one, will go back to check. When I said it is plastic I meant the frame etc. not the flap, and the ones I have at least are pretty flimsy frames and badly constructed. Those are two inside ones, but I have one aluminum frame inside one door on the door from house to garage where Quinn’s cat genie is which has a soft clear flap which has been there over 15 years maybe and still going strong. It has only one locking mechanism which is a metal flap inserted but it is absolutely foolproof.

And I have an exterior door which went into a huge catio shelter I built which is also aluminum and very heavy duty, still in near perfect condition and very sturdy. It did not get much use and eventually the shelter was destroyed in a storm and removed, but still it is very good quality. It also has the insert locking system with a heavy hard plastic insert and it is very wide with two flaps I think. I should look up the company if I can find the name now and see if they have any chip doors now. That one is also over 15 years old.

The ones Quinn destroyed are petsafe doors, the studio one is better because the locking system is pretty good , but he pushed on it to try to get to Merlin and broke it. That is 15 years or so old as well. The other one is on my room, only put up a year ago and he pushes the door flap right out😹 it is also very hard to lock etc in the different modes. I bought another though and figured out I had left a part out of it, so I think if I replace that one it will function better there, but I would still prefer a metal frame.

I am going to read about the pet sureflap. It will probably mean cutting a bigger hole though since the petssafe one is pretty small.

Here is my little Quinn, a sealpoint, he weighs 11-12 now but he was tiny as a baby and Merlin, the big guy...
4482F480-D92C-40D5-90CA-F7A767E0B37F.jpeg

9502C627-4F75-43BE-98EE-A1CDD3A0E1D8.jpeg
 
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Kieka

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Ahhhh..... I get it.

I don't know of any doors with selective locking that have a metal frame. I also know which one you are talking about with the metal door slider, I have a similar one in my catio access door. I did do some looking around this morning and just not finding anything that really fits your requirements. A chicken coops door is the closest but that doesnt have the selective unlocking option.

With the SureFlap door, it was the mechanism to lock the door that broke. They use two tabs that lift from the bottom and the gear stopped moving. I took it apart and maybe if I had cleaned the interior with compressed air periodically it wouldn't have built up to the point that it broke. Plus since mine is an exterior door it gets a lot more grime and dust then an interior door would. I'd imagine it would last longer in your situation.
 
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Ahhhh..... I get it.

I don't know of any doors with selective locking that have a metal frame. I also know which one you are talking about with the metal door slider, I have a similar one in my catio access door. I did do some looking around this morning and just not finding anything that really fits your requirements. A chicken coops door is the closest but that doesnt have the selective unlocking option.

With the SureFlap door, it was the mechanism to lock the door that broke. They use two tabs that lift from the bottom and the gear stopped moving. I took it apart and maybe if I had cleaned the interior with compressed air periodically it wouldn't have built up to the point that it broke. Plus since mine is an exterior door it gets a lot more grime and dust then an interior door would. I'd imagine it would last longer in your situation.
I read more reviews on sf pet door but there are still many bad reviews that raccoons got in, even a video that show two getting in, lol. Someone said that has been fixed now but a newer complaint said that said racoons broke the plastic locking mechanism. If a raccoon can do it I know Quinn can too.

And others said the chips did not read properly until the animal is close maybe or at all with a long nosed dog, and one said it let her unchipped cat out. I will try to link them here.

I don’t want to spend $90 or so and it is not on prime shipping so it will be hard to return etc.
I am not sure what to do, because they all have problems. Someone said the petmate chip cat flap was problematic, very noisy and amputated her cat’s tail😳 I don't understand why someone doesn’t make a better product using this technology.

I also checked again because there are a few different prices listed at Amazon, all under the sureflap link there, ranging from $80 or so to $220 or so, very confusing. They can’t all be the same, so maybe some are counterfeit. And not all of the more expensive ones have extras such as the controlling hub etc. - why would surflap allow doors they don’t make maybe to be listed under their name?
 
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Kieka

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I haven't had a raccoon break through my door in the last six years (since I got the first one) but maybe my local raccoons are less tenacious. I do have them on camera trying to get in, so it's not lack of raccoons in the area. Nothing is fail safe, there is always going to be someone who reports problems. It could be user error, a bad unit or a legit problem. It's up to us as consumers to try to figure out the differences and decide where to take the risk. The pet door has been in production for several years and there are older versions so some might be design flaws that were fixed. But it's up to you if it is worth taking the risk that you will have a bad experience. I know my first SureFlap cat door was replaced under warranty because the sensor didnt seen to work well. My boy has a long neck, his chip if further back and he does have to get his head right up to the door. There is a way to extend the range or let it stay unlocked longer (ask customer service for details if it isn't in the manual). But all three of my cats have adapted to the unlocking timing of the door and with the pet door the range seems longer than the cat door was.

As to price, I don't know why the Amazon price is so much lower than the manufacturer price. Maybe they are getting rid of the older model because of the Connect model being released. As long as the seller name is right, it is safe. Amazon controls their website so it isn't SureFlap allowing counterfit sellers. Amazon let's people list under existing listings the same item so completely an Amazon issue in how they allow sellers to list. Which is why you should always click on the little link saying who the seller is and verify it's the right company. I did buy mine through Amazon with the lower price and it was shipped from SureFlap directly.
 
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I haven't had a raccoon break through my door in the last six years (since I got the first one) but maybe my local raccoons are less tenacious. I do have them on camera trying to get in, so it's not lack of raccoons in the area. Nothing is fail safe, there is always going to be someone who reports problems. It could be user error, a bad unit or a legit problem. It's up to us as consumers to try to figure out the differences and decide where to take the risk. The pet door has been in production for several years and there are older versions so some might be design flaws that were fixed. But it's up to you if it is worth taking the risk that you will have a bad experience. I know my first SureFlap cat door was replaced under warranty because the sensor didnt seen to work well. My boy has a long neck, his chip if further back and he does have to get his head right up to the door. There is a way to extend the range or let it stay unlocked longer (ask customer service for details if it isn't in the manual). But all three of my cats have adapted to the unlocking timing of the door and with the pet door the range seems longer than the cat door was.

As to price, I don't know why the Amazon price is so much lower than the manufacturer price. Maybe they are getting rid of the older model because of the Connect model being released. As long as the seller name is right, it is safe. Amazon controls their website so it isn't SureFlap allowing counterfit sellers. Amazon let's people list under existing listings the same item so completely an Amazon issue in how they allow sellers to list. Which is why you should always click on the little link saying who the seller is and verify it's the right company. I did buy mine through Amazon with the lower price and it was shipped from SureFlap directly.
Thanks. I am still not sure I want to spend even $80 on something that may not work or may fail too early on down the road. I think most of those bad reviews are valid, not just for sureflap but for all of the doors, and if you get a door that fails after warranty you are stuck and lose money. You are lucky yours failed before. I still don’t understand why someone doesn't design something better. I can’t figure out any other way to stop Quinn using Merlin’s litter box though. I hate having to make these decisions with not a great choice to start. I don’t know if Merlin will use it and what if it fails to let him in to poop etc? Lol. More problems. If it were definitely easy to return via amazon prime I would feel safer. I know a lot of companies may use that as a way to make returns more difficult, not using prime, I think anyway. Plus returning is not easy anyway, you have to take the door out and put another one in.

They are all listed under sureflap, is there another way to tell if the seller is actually not really sureflap? I don’t see any way to do that.
Anyway, thanks for your help!
 

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If they are all listed under SureFlap then they are all valid. SureFlap isn't prime because it is UK based and they ship from there so they can't meet requirements to be prime. When my door wasn't working I had no problem with customer service trouble shooting or sending a replacement unit.
 
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If they are all listed under SureFlap then they are all valid. SureFlap isn't prime because it is UK based and they ship from there so they can't meet requirements to be prime. When my door wasn't working I had no problem with customer service trouble shooting or sending a replacement unit.
Ok. Not sure I want to deal with UK for a door etc. and I am sure I don’t want to ship back to to UK lol. I will prolly try one of the others.
 
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