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How Much Space Between Gate And Post?

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A gate and a post are crucial elements of any structure. However, the space between the two has long been overlooked and oftentimes not specified in building codes. We have researched this matter extensively so we can provide you with a clear and detailed explanation of the proper spacing for these critical structural components.

It's best to leave about 0.5 inches to 0.75 inches between a gate and the post that it sits next to. That leaves enough space for the gate to swing open and close freely without hitting each other.

If you have a gate and a post, you want to keep them spaced correctly for maximum security and convenience. Read the rest of this article to learn why the spacing is important between your gate and post. We'll also include some valuable tips on how to maintain your gate correctly. ho

w to maintain Opened black wrought iron gate between stone pillars. Behind the fence is a driveway covered with light colored gravel, How Much Space Between Gate And Post?your gate and post correctly.

Why You Should Have Space Between a Gate and a Post

Space between a gate and a post is required to prevent the gate from swinging into contact with the post. However, there are other reasons why you should have space between the post and the gate. These reasons include safety, appearance, and convenience.

While there is no universal recommendation for the amount of space between a gate and a post, common practice is to have at least 0.5 inches to 0.75 of clearance between a gate and its adjacent post.

This should be sufficient enough for the hinges and latches to function properly. 

An incorrect spacing could result in the gate rubbing against the post or hitting it when the gate is being swung open and close, which could damage the post.

This is why it’s important to have the right amount of clearance between the post and the gate so that you can avoid this issue.

open black metal gate and part of a brick wall of a fence on the street on a gray sidewalk

Safety

Your gate can be very important to the overall security of your home or business. This structure is often the first line of defense against people trying to gain unauthorized access to your property.

Gates are also designed to help prevent animals from entering your property. The gate design you choose should depend on the needs and preferences of your property.

It is important to consider a variety of factors when deciding on a design.

If you have too much of a space between a gate and post, you could end up with an unsightly gap that will eventually cause security issues.

When the gates are closed, the space between the gate and post will make your property look like a concert venue for people with general admission tickets to come and enjoy the view of what's going on inside your property. 

If you want to avoid this issue, you will want to leave the smallest gap just enough for the latch and hinges to engage properly. If you do this, your property will not be visible from the outside when the gates are closed.

In addition, too wide a gap can be enough room for rodents and other small animals to squeeze into your property. These creatures usually sneak in through small cracks and crevices, or wherever they are given enough space to maneuver.

They might find a way to enter your home if they feel that the space between your gate and post is your way of inviting them to come over.

An animal’s ability to get inside a property is a concern that is best addressed by making sure that there is a proper distance between a gate and a post.

Automatic swing gates made of wood in a private house

Appearance

A wide gap between your gate and its nearest post is a sure sign that your gate is not well-designed. A badly designed gate is a security issue and is a red flag to prospects if you're selling your home. This single flaw alone can depreciate your home's value substantially.

In addition, proper spacing gives the gate a more graceful appearance. If the gate is flush against the post, it is more likely to look like an ugly, heavy piece of metal than a beautifully carved gate.

Keep in mind that gates are not only used as a physical barrier to keep people out of your yard. They also add a nice decorative touch to your fence. To maximize the appearance of the gate, you should leave the right amount of space between the post and the gate.

Convenience

A gate with a wide gap between its next post just doesn't make sense. It's like your contractor has intentionally done this because he was forced to accept your proposed downpayment.

A wide gap between the gate and the post will give you a hard time closing the gate since the latch is mostly likely to be large just so it will fully engage both structures. This will take up valuable time and annoy you every time you do it.

If you want to know how to calculate post spacing between a gate, you can watch this video:

How to Maintain Your Gate and Post 

House Driveway and the Gate Pressure Washing by Caucasian Men

The gate and the post are two parts of the front door system that are vital to security. As such, they are usually left out of the average homeowner's mind and attention. But they are the first line of defense against intruders.

They must be well-maintained to function properly. We have compiled 5 maintenance tips to keep your gate and post in top shape for a long time.

1. Clean your gate regularly

Washing and waxing your gate is an essential part of caring for it properly. It helps to keep the surface of your gate looking new and polished.

Your gate’s finish is composed of a powder coating. While the powder coating will not wear off completely, it can easily be dulled or chipped away by harsh conditions like strong winds, rain, and snow. 

Wash your gates with warm water and mild soap. Then rinse with clean water to remove all soap residue. It’s best to do this at least twice a week or after every heavy soiling.

2. Watch out for pests

Slime trails and spider webs can interfere with the circuit boards of your automated gate. Pest control is critical for a safe and reliable gate.

3. Keep it dry at all times

A gate that has both fresh and saltwater is not good for the gate's motor or other electrical components. If you live in a coastal area or near the ocean, the salty environment can corrode the metal over time.

It doesn't matter if you have fresh or saltwater in your gate. What's important is you keep your gate dry and don't allow moisture to stay for long periods of time.

4. Inspect your gate periodically

As you can imagine, gates get a lot of wear and tear. You don't want to leave your gate in an unkempt state for long periods of time. It’s also important to keep an eye out for issues such as rust, decay, and damaged circuitry caused by rodents.

As soon as you notice any issues with your gate, you can take action if it's a minor issue or consult a professional for major problems.

5. Grease moving parts

If the gate is making a screeching noise, it’s likely that the moving parts have been worn down and need to be lubricated. A gate that lacks lubrication will stress the moving parts more easily, leading to premature failure.

Check the grease for proper consistency and level. If the grease is too thin, it will not be effective at lubricating the moving parts. If the grease is too thick, it will not do anything to your hardware. You'll just be pouring money down the drain for wasting grease.

Check out this Lubriplate gate lubricant on Amazon

How Wide Should the Gate Opening Be?

Big black gated house driveway

The recommended width for a single gate is 4 feet. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule, which include narrow driveways and those with tight turning radii.

Should a Gate be the Same Height as the Fence?

When you are planning the height of your fence, you should remember that you can use the length of your gate as a guide to how long your gate needs to be.

However, you should also remember that the height of your gate doesn't always dictate the height of the fence (or vice versa, whichever you prioritize first).

A gate that is too tall will look out of place, especially if you live in a small space with a narrow opening.

In Closing

Opened black wrought iron gate between stone pillars. Behind the fence is a driveway covered with light colored gravel

After reading this article, we hope you learned some helpful information about how much space you need between the gate and the post. Knowing this will help you plan your gate design and installation. If you want to learn more, please check out the following articles:

Should A Driveway Gate Open In Or Out?

How Much Space Between Fence Posts

13 Types Of Fences For Your Backyard