Best Driveway Gates
Best Driveway Gates:
A Complete Guide into Every Aspect of Your Driveway Gate
Driveway gates have always been popular for the wealthy and those with something to hide. But due to security and privacy concerns wooden and metal driveway gates are becoming increasingly popular for everybody else.
So to find out which are the best driveway gates, read on.
In this article we take a look at the most stunningly spectacular gate to the sturdiest fortress like gate – and of course everything in between.
If you would like inspiration – have a look at our Driveway Gate Ideas article as well.
Do you need Planning Permission to install a driveway gate?
First and foremost, do you need planning permission to install a driveway gate?
In short, most people will NOT – However, it will be worth knowing that you will need to apply for planning permission in the following circumstances:
Things to Consider when Looking for a New Driveway Gate:
- Do you have existing driveway posts? As this pre-decides the width of the gate
- What size gate are you looking for? What width do you want, do you want a double or single gate and possibly a side gate for pedestrian access?
- Do you want a swinging or sliding gate?
- Do you want a manual or electrical gate?
- Do you know what material you want? PVC, Wrought Iron, Steel, Aluminium, Wood?
- What kind of shape are you looking at? Straight? Biased? Curved?
You have exisiting gate posts, walls or structure to attach your gate to:
Should you have posts which are strong and durable, which are capable of holding your next gate for years to come, then you obviously need to measure the gap carefully to find your next gate.
You simply do this by measuring from the inside of one post to the inside or the opposite post. Same goes for a wall or other structure that the gate will be attached to.
Important not to measure from the existing hinge pins as this will keep you short.
Unless you are ordering the exact same copy of your last gate, it’s likely these pins will need to be removed, in order to hang your new driveway gate correctly.
Best Driveway Gates: WOODEN DRIVEWAY GATES
Sliding wooden driveway gates provide extra strength and durability
Wooden driveway gates are strong and durable. They range from farm style country gates for keeping cattle in, to close boarded gates which provide extra privacy.
Wooden driveway gates are usually made from hardwoods such as Teak, Oak and Iroko (also known as African teak). Sometimes softwoods are also used in wooden gate construction such as Scandinavian Redwood or Cedar. These offer a lower cost alternative to hardwood gates.
Closed Boarded Wooden Gates Provide Extra Privacy
A single hinge wooden farm style gate
As with many things hand construction is far superior to machine, and this is especially true for sliding wooden gates. These provide super strong strength and durability.
Charming but this farm style driveway gate could do with a lick of paint!
Regular maintenance will ensure that a wooden gate is kept in good condition and will help prevent cracking due to the effects of weathering. Wood being wood may warp and over time this may be unavoidable.
Best Driveway Gates: METAL DRIVEWAY GATES
Many people refer to wrought iron when they are actually talking about mild steel.
This isn’t the place to get technical about it, but wrought iron is the stuff swords are made of and other time weathered artifacts from bygone tymes.
Steel has a low carbon content compared to standard iron, which means it can be rolled into shapes. Does that sound as strong to you?
Mild steel (as well as other metals such as Aluminium) is used in the manufacture of most metal gates.
They are durable and strong but do not have the tensile strength of wrought iron.
Good enough? Put your sword away now Conan!
If a salesperson refers to mild steel as wrought iron they are just deliberately misleading or don’t know what they’re selling.
Design styles are limitless for metal driveway gates.
These range from the very secure (almost industrial complex looking) long sliding gates to intricately styled curved metal gates that look as though they have taken an age to roll and form.
Increasingly modern minimalist designs are becoming popular which can be both eye catching and futuristic looking. These stand out with their thin bars and sleek cuts.
This style of minimalist driveway gate is for those that can’t stand clutter
A long sliding electric gate
A low cost and surprisingly effective wrought iron driveway gate disguised as a bush
Metal Driveway Gates create the modern finish many aspire to
Driveway gates - Automation
Adding automation to a gate is convenient and is guaranteed to offer a stylish entry and exit every time. For added style play some music from Moonraker or Goldfinger.
Above ground or below ground?
Electrical control boxes are available for both wooden and metal driveway gates. These can either stand alone at the sides of gates, or if space is tight, or a flush look is preferred then opting for a below ground installation is best.
More on sliding gate automation
Sometimes space or gradients will not allow enough clearance for gates to open. A solution to this is sliding gate automation. This type of system uses a flat gear that attaches to the side of the gate and then a pinion gear on the motor winds the gate open and closed. The gate runs back and forth on grooved or circular wheels along a level horizontal beam fitted with a channel.
This type of driveway gate system can either be a single gate or twin gates and is accepted as the most secure type of automation.
Driveway gates - Cost
The cost of drive gates is going to be determined by the material chosen and the size of gates needed. A bespoke design metal gate order in Aluminium is going to cost a lot more than a simple minimalist steel design, for example. Likewise, a large solid oak gate is going to cost more than a softwood such as Cedar.
Expect to pay anywhere between £1,000 and £10,000
Driveway gate automation
Adding automation increases costs in the region of £500 to £2,500 depending on which system is chosen.
Some manufacturers have migrated from industrial size gate automation to cater for the growing demand from the residential sector.
These established automation manufacturers should be chosen over cheaper made products. The cost of an automated system malfunctioning can be embarrassment and that’s just not nice!
We’ve selected some of the best driveway gate companies (to save you the task!)
Find professional gate companies on our directory.