Driveway Gates – The Essential Guide

The entrance gate, the driveway to your property and house – we often see them only as a necessary element of our driveway, as a modest continuation of the garden wall or fence and simply as an entry and exit. We forget that they can enhance the visual appeal of a property by adding style and charm. The gate is often the first thing visitors see when they visit or pass through your property, and its appearance can reflect what lies behind it by making a good or bad first impression.

Which entrance gate should I choose?

The choice of an entrance gate depends heavily on the style and intended purpose. A simple wooden gate that blends seamlessly into the fence or wall creates a traditional look. Alternatively, a solid wood clad or wrought iron gate can provide a higher level of privacy and security for your home.

Automated or manual

If you want to go a little further, you can consider an automatic gate. No more annoying getting in and out on a wet day and the advantage that the gate is always closed when the driveway is not used. Electric gates can be a great addition to your property by deterring unwanted visitors, but make sure you have a professional gate technician install them. There are many options to choose from, depending on the approach and slope.

Types of gates

Basically, entrance gates are made of two materials, wood or metal. Metal gates come in a variety of styles and shapes and are made from steel or aluminum. Steel doors traditionally tend to be more ornate in nature, where aluminum doors can offer the look and feel of a traditional wood-clad door, but at a fraction of the weight and without the hassle of yearly wood maintenance.

Gate care and maintenance

Now that you’ve invested in the ideal gate for your driveway, you need to make sure that your gate gets the best protection so that it looks like new for as long as possible driveway gate wood.

Almost all new wooden entrance gates are pre-treated to protect the wood against wood rot and insect infestation, but these treatments do not provide all-round protection against the elements. Weather erosion and the sun’s UV rays will slow the effectiveness of these treatments over time.

If you’re looking for a natural look, any preservative treatment can be topped off with a clear wood or outdoor patio oil. These products contain a mixture of oils, waxes and resins that penetrate deep into the wood and provide excellent protection against the ingress of water. Some of these products contain UV filters, which help to keep the natural color of the wood longer and to delay weathering.

Paint your entrance gate

If you are planning to paint your door, it is important that any wood preservative that has previously been used is free of wax, oil and silicone. Most exterior paints are water-based and any pre-treatment containing wax or oil will prevent the paint from sticking to the wood. Always invest in a quality paint so that you can save time and money in the long run.

Wood stains

Using a wood stain on the exterior of your entrance gate is a great way to preserve the natural grain of the wood. A light-colored softwood door can be stained and sealed to match the color of teak, mahogany, or walnut.

Why oil wooden gates?

As with any other garden wood such as benches, sheds, and fences, it is always a good idea to oil the wood as part of your annual garden maintenance gate design ideas. Wood oils penetrate the wood grain to replace the natural oils lost over time. This keeps the wood nourished and flexible and helps to avoid or reduce cracks and crevices. In addition, many wood and terrace oils for outdoor use contain UV filters, which help protect the wood from the bleaching effects of the sun.

An added benefit of using wood oils is that they prevent water ingress, a common cause of mold and wood rot.

You May Also Like

About the Author: Peter Beaumont

Peter Beaumont is a senior reporter on Daily Mid Time Global Development desk. He has reported extensively from conflict zones including Africa, the Balkans and the Middle East and is the author of The Secret Life of War: Journeys Through Modern Conflict. Email: