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5 Things to Know Before Buying a Gate

Last Updated Jun 26, 2014 · Written by Rob Schneider

Good fences may make good neighbours, but in order for you or your invited guests to enter your property, you need a gate. In spite of their importance as the only moving part of a fence, gates are often a secondary consideration when homeowners install fences. Here are 5 things you need to know to ensure that the gate you choose will be the right one for your needs.

©Gate Power

1. When you visit gate suppliers, keep an open mind and look at all the styles and materials that are available. The perfect gate should be one that defines and flatters your property, makes those who are welcome feel welcome and keeps those who are unwelcome out. An arched gate, for example, looks attractive, lets visitors know at a glance where the gate is located and tells everyone else that the gate is there for a reason.

2. One of the most frequent jobs carried out by a handyman is the replacement of gate hinges. This is almost always because the wrong hinges were used in the first place. Even lightweight, low picket gates put a lot of stress on hinges, so make sure that your fence supplier includes quality hinges and if you are a do-it-yourselfer, ask the staff at your local hardware store to help you choose the right hinges and screws for your gate.

It's important to match your gate with your needs. If you are only concerned with keeping your pets enclosed in the yard, just be sure the gate is high enough that your dog can't jump over it and that it is low enough that your companion animal can't crawl under it. It's also a good idea to choose self-closing hinges if pet containment is an issue. If you want to be sure your small children don't wander outside the confines of your yard, be sure to have childproof gate latches installed. If home security is your concern, then call a security fence specialist and have a security fence and gate installed.

4. If you have a fence installed across the front of your house, it will only be a matter of time before you wish you had considered having an automatic gate installed across your driveway. Both swinging and sliding models are available and you'll appreciate the ability to open your gate at the touch of a button from inside your car when you return home on cold and rainy evenings.

5. A good child-proof gate is an absolute must for your pool enclosure. If you have a swimming pool, get a pool fencing specialist to install an integrated system for you. Brilliant designs are available that not only keep your pool area safe, but enhance its appearance as well.

Whether you choose steel, timber, PVC, aluminium or any other type of material for your gate, one or more of these 5 recommendations will apply. For best results, always get a professional to supply and fit your fences and gates. Their expertise will ensure that the job is "done once, done right" and your gate will give you many years of trouble-free service.
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