Installing a Fence Gate: What You Should Know Before You Begin

Whether you are installing a wood privacy fence, the traditional picket fence, an ornamental fence, or a chain link fence, fence gates help you access your space quickly and easily. But before you begin installing a gate, here are a few things you should consider.

1. Where will your gates be located?

Most homeowners feel that placing a fence gate on either side of their home is adequate, but forget to look at other entry and exit points that may warrant a gate. If your fence borders your neighbors, who happen to be your best friends, do you want a gate accessing their yard? If your fence is intended to go around your pool, do you want a single point of entry or two for ease of access? If your fence goes all the way around your property, is a driveway gate adequate for front access or do you want an additional gate that leads up to your front door? Taking some time to consider how you want to live in your space can prevent having to add additional gates in the future.

2. What size gates do you need?

Even if you currently access your yard on foot, do you anticipate a need to drive a lawnmower, trailer, cement mixer or other vehicle into your yard space? Do you want to be able to park an RV, trailer or project car behind your fence? The demands you will place on your space will determine the size and features of your fence. If you plan on parking a car that you regularly use behind your fence, having a gate with an automatic opening system is a wise investment.

3. Hinges Matter.

The hinges on your fence will determine how many times your gate can be open and shut. Inevitably, most people who install their own fence gates undersize their hinges and experience problems with their gate not opening within a few, short months. This is especially important if your gate is made from pressure treated wood that can hold water and become heavy during spring rain storms. The heavier the gate when it is wet, the larger the hinge required to move it.
If your fence is surrounding a pool, your gate is required by law to have self-closing hinges. This safety feature keeps the gate closed at all times, protecting your family and pets.

4. Sink Gate Posts Below the Frost Line.

Sinking fence posts is an exhausting process involving digging holes, setting poles and pouring in concrete. Do not be tempted to set a pole what you think is deep enough without checking your local area’s frost lines. Setting the pole deeper than this line will guarantee your fence will stay put even after the ground begins to contract in the cold.

The strength and durability of your fence gate will ultimately depend on the preparation you put in before the fence is installed. Taking the time to do a little planning and answer questions about how you will use your fence will take the guess work out of installing your fence gate when the time comes. Once you’ve decided on which fence gate give us a call at HoCo Fence for installation!