6 advantages of chain drives (chain actuators)

SCS Group’s Faye Young has been working on the Heathside and Lethbridge development’s smoke control and ventilation systems. The transformation of the Heathside and Lethbridge Estate will create a high-density, mixed-tenure development. The project will deliver 512sqm of retail floor space, 768sqm of community floor space, an energy centre and 1192 residential units in contemporary apartment buildings ranging from 3 to 17 storeys in height.

heathside.jpgArtist's impression of the Heathside and Lethbridge development

Faye recently worked with Easivent when specifying the best actuator for opening the multiple floor to ceiling height window AOVs within the development. There was a specific requirement for the AOVs to deliver natural smoke and daily ventilation to the core of the building. Richard, Product Engineer recommended synchronised pairs of chain drives because they matched Faye’s initial requirements. Speaking to Richard, he gave many reasons for his selection in this instance:

Ease of installation

Chain actuators are fairly straight forward to install providing there is sufficient room on the frame to install it. However, care should be taken to ensure that motors can be accessed for maintenance. 

Ease of control

This powerful actuator has a low noise output, it has one motor and low power use. It also operates using reverse polarity.

Low cost

Chain drives are a relatively low cost, reliable solution with the flexibility to most suit smoke and natural ventilation projects.


When installed, the chain drive sits neatly on the frame.

Synchronised versions available 

When more than one chain drive is required on the window, synchronised versions are available.

Wide variety of programmable options 

Chain drives are pre-programmable to specific force and stroke lengths to suit a large proportion of projects. These can be discussed with the Easivent team prior to order, alternatively you can access this equipment yourself as part of our approved installer scheme

We’ve created a review snapshot comparing the performance of chain drives to folding arm and slit actuators against set criteria including ease of installation and ease of control.  


To view all actuators, visit the Easivent website.


Download the Window Technology Brochure


Under the Construction Products Regulations (CPR) it is a legal requirement to use only certified products for smoke ventilation. For more information see SCS Group's Technical Bulletin here.

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