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Best microchip cat flaps 2024: Tried and tested models to keep your moggies safe

A grey cat sat in a garden

Our test cats have trialled a variety of microchip cat flaps to find the perfect fit for your home

If you want to keep your cat safe, the best microchip cat flaps are a particularly clever invention. They give your cat free access to the outdoors, while preventing any neighbourhood moggies from sneaking in to help themselves to free food. These cat flaps have a built-in sensor that recognises your cat’s microchip, meaning that only they can go in and out of the flap. This puts these cat flaps at a huge advantage over a normal, non-chipped flap – particularly if your cat is being bullied or you have a greedy “six dinner Sid” living nearby.

I’m a cat fosterer for a local cat rescue and while we don’t let our foster cats outside, I’ve spent my whole life dealing with demands of my own cats and their desire to be in, out, in and out again. Cat flaps in general are a godsend for those of us who are servants to moggies, meaning that we don’t have to get up and down every five minutes to let a cat in or out through a window or door. Allowing cats access to the outside world in a safe environment gives them the best natural life possible, so it’s worth investing in a good cat flap to let them come and go as they please.

I’ve put together short reviews of the microchip cat flaps I recommend but if you have any queries, you can jump to our buying guide at the end of the article.

Best microchip cat flaps: At a glance

Best for those on a budgetCat Mate 360W Microchip Cat Flap (~£71)Check price at Amazon
Best for multi-cat householdsSureFlap DualScan Microchip Cat Flap (~£110)Check price at Argos
Best for keeping out draughtsPetSafe Microchip Activated Cat Flap (~£67)Check price at Amazon

How we test microchip cat flaps

As a cat owner, I have used several of these cat flaps over the years, and I’ve also spoken to friends and other cat rescue volunteers to gather together a comprehensive list of the best microchip cat flaps around right now. I tested these cat flaps on how easy they are to set up, how well they work and on whether the cats were happy to use them.

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The best microchip cat flaps you can buy in 2024

1. Cat Mate 360W Microchip Cat Flap: Best for those on a budget

Price when reviewed: £71 | Check price at Amazon

  • Great for… those on a tighter budget, multi-cat households
  • Not so great for… the rotary four-way lock is a little flimsy compared to some other models

The Cat Mate 360W is a simply designed microchip cat flap that doesn’t cost the earth – in microchip cat flap terms that is. Made by PetMate, who are known for reasonably priced cat flaps, the Cat Mate works with either your cat’s implanted microchip or a unique ID disk that you can fit to a collar.

I found the Cat Mate a really simple cat flap to program, with just the push of a button an LED indicator will flash to let you know the microchip has been registered. You’ll need four AA batteries to power the cat flap but my testers say the batteries last for around a year, making the Cat Mate fairly good value for money.

I like the fact that you can programme up to 30 different microchips into the cat flap, making this a good choice for a multi-cat household. The flap itself is transparent and made from extremely tough polymer, plus there’s also a weatherproof brush seal to help keep out drafts. A rotary four-way lock allows you to control how, or if, cats can come in and out of the house. The Cat Mate 360W can be installed in most doors, as well as walls and glass panels with the relevant adapter. This is a well-made simple design that should give you many years of use.

Key details – Size: 11 x 20 x 25cm; Weight: 930g; Power: 4x AA batteries; Colours: White, brown

2. SureFlap DualScan Microchip Cat Flap: Best for multi-cat households

Price when reviewed: £110 | Check price at Argos

  • Great for… multi-cat households, individual settings for different cats, safety mode
  • Not so great for… clunky and chunky design

If you’ve got more than one cat, the DualScan could be just the cat flap you’re looking for. It works with both microchips and the SureFlap RFID collar tag; it can also be programmed for individual cats. This means you can keep specific cats inside, for instance, if they have a dreaded vet appointment and you don’t want them sneaking off, while the rest of your feline clowder can keep going in and out at will.

The cat flap can be programmed for up to 32 cats and is powered by 4x AA batteries that should last up to a year. Like the Cat Mate, there is one-button programming, which I found very easy to get to grips with. There’s also a manual four-way lock for security and I particularly liked the safety mode, which allows any cats who managed to escape through a window or door to come back in, even if the flap is locked for the night. It can also be installed in doors, windows and walls, though you may need some extra accessories such as tunnel extenders.

It’s not the prettiest cat flap as it’s quite solid and chunky but for those living in a multi-cat household it’s a brilliant invention. And as someone with many of my own cats, this is one of my favourite options.

Key details – Size: 14.8 x 21 x 21cm; Weight: 1kg; Power: 4x AA batteries; Colours: White, brown

3. PetSafe Microchip Activated Cat Flap: Best for keeping out draughts

Price when reviewed: £67 | Check price at Amazon

  • Great for… keeping out draughts, easy programming and long battery life
  • Not great for… slightly slow to open, you might need to spend more money on accessories to fit certain locations

If you’re of a reptilian nature as I am, you’ll want to avoid the draughts that can come with some cat flaps. The PetSafe cat flap is ideal for us chilly billies, with two magnetic closing points that increase insulation and act as a draught excluder, making it extremely energy efficient. There’s also weather stripping to help protect the flap from wind and rain.

I found setup easy, with one-button programming, however this flap is marginally slower to open than some others on the market. This might take your cat a little while to get used to, so be patient. The cat flap has a green light that appears when a chip is read successfully and the LED light will also indicate when your battery is running low. Powered by 4x AA batteries, battery life is again impressive at around 12 months.

The PetSafe cat flap comes with a cutting template to help with fitting but you should note that for doors made of metal, glass or PVC, or to put the cat flap in a brick wall, you’ll need to purchase the PetSafe installation adapter and tunnel extension. This is another well-made cat flap and reasonably priced compared to other models.

Key details – Size: 12.2 x 22 x 23.9cm; Weight: 744g; Power: 4x AA batteries; Colours: White, brown

4. SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect and Hub: Best for keeping an eye on your cats

Price when reviewed: £215 | Check price at Pets at Home

  • Great for… lots of clever features via the app, remote ability to lock and unlock cat flap
  • Not so great for… those on a budget

Gadget-lovers will adore the SureFlap Microchip Connect, which comes with a hub that connects the cat flap to the accompanying Sure Petcare app. You get all the usual features of a microchip cat flap: it works with one-button programming and has a manual locking system, but there’s also lots of extras accessed through the app.

You can lock or unlock the cat flap remotely when you’re not at home and I also like that there’s also a curfew mode, which allows you to lock or unlock the cat flap at specific times of day. The app also lets you check if your cat is at home and will even “meow” when a cat goes in or out. If you’re going to be out, you can share permissions with your friends so that they can keep an eye on your cats and control their comings and goings.

However, you won’t get all these features without the hub and this needs to be plugged into your router via Ethernet, as well as into the mains. You’ll also need 4x C cell batteries, which you should expect to last a maximum of six months. I did feel that this cat flap does require a basic level of understanding when it comes to apps and technology.

Read our full SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect review

Key details – Size: 12.5 x 26.2 x 28cm; Weight: 1.3kg; Power: 4x C cell batteries; Colours: White

5. SureFlap Microchip Pet Door: Best for larger cats

Price when reviewed: £116 | Check price at Pets at Home

  • Great for… larger cats (and small dogs) and curfew mode
  • Not great for… needs a larger space to install it

If you own a larger cat, such as a Norwegian Forest, Maine Coon or just have a cat that’s more generously proportioned, you’ll want a slightly larger-than-normal cat flap. At 26.2 x 28cm, the SureFlap Microchip Pet Door will accommodate even the largest moggy, as well as small dogs. You can store up to 32 pet microchips in the memory and, as well as microchips, the flap is compatible with the SureFlap RFID collar tag – there’s even one included in the box. I can personally attest to this cat flap fitting larger moggies, as it was used with a cat weighing 7.5kg who is 2.5ft from nose to tail.

As well as the usual one-touch programming button, the pet door has a curfew mode that allows you to set the door to lock and unlock at various times. There’s also a four-way manual lock to secure the flap and override the microchip lock if necessary. The pet door runs on 4x C cell batteries, and can be fitted into doors, as well as glass and walls with the relevant accessories. A larger cat doesn’t have to mean no outside access.

Key details – Size: 12.5 x 26.2 x 28cm; Weight: 1.49kg; Power: 4x C cell batteries; Colours: White, Brown

Check price at Pets at Home

How to choose the best microchip cat flap for you

Although there aren’t masses of microchip cat flaps on the market, you’ll still want to choose one that works for your needs. Our buying guide should help you make the right decision.

How does a microchip cat flap work?

Microchipping your cat is one of the easiest ways to keep it safe. A tiny chip is inserted into the cat, which can then be read by a portable scanner should your cat ever get lost and end up at a vet practice.

Microchip cat flaps use a similar scanner, inserted into the cat flap itself in the form of a sensor. Setting up is extremely easy – you simply introduce your cat’s microchip to the sensor and the cat flap will store its information. Most flaps will also let you register multiple cats.

Do make sure that your cat’s microchip is one that’s recognised by the cat flap you choose. Some older microchips and foreign chips may not be compatible.

Where should I install my cat flap?

Cat flaps can be installed into doors, windows and walls. Not all cat flaps are suitable for all materials so make sure you check the requirements for your chosen cat flap before buying. And don’t forget that the size of the hole required for installation will be larger than the size of the opening in your cat flap. Expect to need between 2-6cm more than the stated dimensions and around 5cm extra in depth.

If you’re installing a cat flap into glass, you will most likely need a mounting adapter. When installing a cat flap into glass a circular hole is required, so these adapters are circular with the cat flap placed in their open centre. Expect to pay around £12 for these.

If you’re installing the cat flap into a wall, you may need a tunnel extender (sometimes called a door liner). Each tunnel extender adds 5cm to the overall length of the tunnel and you can stack them together to create a tunnel of any length. These retail for around £6 a tunnel.

Finally, remember that your cat won’t want to reach up too far to get in and out of the cat flap. Make sure you install it at a suitable height for their legs.

How to train a cat to use a cat flap

Those of you who are already servants to our feline overlords may be laughing at the idea that you can train a cat to do anything. However, there are some simple tips you can try to make your cat use a new cat flap with ease.

When your new cat flap arrives, take it out of its packaging and let your cat have a good sniff. Encourage them to scent mark the flap or take a cloth, wipe it round their face and then wipe over the cat flap. If you’re installing a microchip cat flap, programme your cat’s chip into the flap before you install it.

Try to install your cat flap into a wall, door or window that opens out onto an enclosed or sheltered space. Cats feel more vulnerable in open spaces, so may hesitate to use a cat flap that doesn’t provide them with security. If you have no choice but to install into an open space, try to position objects around the cat flap such as plant pots. This will give your cat places to hide.

Prop the cat flap open with a peg or strong tape. Give your cat time to get used to going in and out through the hole and lower it slightly over time so that they have to start pushing it a little. If your cat is reluctant to use the flap, try enticing them through with their favourite treats.

Be patient and remember that it may take your cat days or weeks to get used to using a new cat flap. Don’t give in and open the door for them or you’ll be back to square one.

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