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Driveway Gate Installation

This guide may prove useful if you’re considering installing driveways gates as it contains many useful tips and advice.

Duration:
1-2 days
Average price:
£700-£1000

Introduction to Driveway Gate Installation

Installing a driveway gate offers many benefits, such as extra kerb appeal, added security, increased privacy and, more crucially, adds additional value to your property.

A driveway gate can add value by improving your home’s appearance, making it look more vibrant and appealing to passers-by. It’s well documented that intruders are less likely to target properties that have a driveway gate installed.



The main reason for this is that they can't be sure whether you are there or not because your home will be hidden from the view of the general public. You could also add the option of a security camera to your driveway gate to improve its security benefits even further.

Because of these benefits, a driveway gate can add around 5% to 10% to the value of your property, which isn’t to be sniffed at!

How Much Does it Cost to Fit a Driveway Gate?

Many factors influence the cost of fitting a driveway gate. These include the following:

Location of Property

Professionals charge different rates for installing, depending on where you live. Prices are much higher in the greater London area and the home counties where the installer can charge a premium for their work. Whilst in places in the North of England prices are much lower because labour costs less.

Ease of Access

The accessibility of your property is an important cost factor. If contractors find it difficult to reach the area you want to have gated, the job takes longer, and the cost will increase.

Size of Gate

The size of the gate is the essential price components when installing a driveway gate. For example, the smaller the gate, a single driveway gate, the cheaper the materials will be. Having a small gate fitted will take less time than a large one, affecting the total price.

Type of Gate

Bi-fold, sliding or electronic gate installation costs will differ based on the material chosen and labour costs. Electronic or automated gates are among the costliest to buy and more time consuming to install. At the other end of the scale, sliding driveway gates are among the cheapest.

Gate Material

The materials used to make the gate will also have important implications for costs. Whether your intention is for your driveway gate to be made of timber, metal or another option, always remember to get quotes before starting the work.



Your driveway gate installation cost can vary dramatically according to your tastes and requirements. Whilst an ordinary driveway gate can have an average cost of as little as £500 to install; for more elaborate systems, the prices can increase to £10,000 and more. In the following section, we compare the prices involved for both labour and supply costs.

A simple sliding gate will cost between £500 and £900, and a bi-fold metal gate around £1900 to £2300. An average farm gate will set you back between £700 and £800. Automated or electric driveway gates end up costing around £8500 to £10,000.

Driveway Gate Installation Prices

The below table sets out the driveway gate installation cost for different styles and sizes of gate:

Style of Gate Size (W x H) Labour Cost Material Cost
Sliding Driveway Gate 6ft x 5ft £500 to £550 £300 to £400
Sliding Driveway Gate 8ft x 5ft £570 to £650 £300 to £400
Sliding Driveway Gate 10ft x 5ft £620 to £780 £300 to £400
Sliding Driveway Gate 15ft x 3ft £900 to £1130 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Wooden Driveway Gate 6ft x 5ft £1200 to £1600 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Wooden Driveway Gate 8ft x 5ft £1500 to £1800 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Wooden Driveway Gate 10ft x 5ft £1700 to £2300 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Wooden Driveway Gate 15ft x 3ft £1900 to £2700 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Metal Gate 7.5ft £240 to £340 £300 to £400
Bi-fold Metal Gate 11.5ft £360 to £440 £300 to £400
Farm Gate 4ft x 4ft £270 to £330 £300 to £400

The following table includes the material and labour costs for high-end driveway gates:

Type of Gate Material Cost Labour Cost
A Double Leaf Swing Gate £7500 to £8500 £500 to £2000
A Single Leaf Swing Gate £6500 to £7000 £500 to £2000
A Tracked Sliding Gate £7500 to £8500 £500 to £2000
An Automated Swing Traffic Barrier £7000 to £8000 £500 to £2000
A Hardwood Timber Electric Gate £5300 to £6300 £500 to £2000
A Custom Metal Electric Swing Gate £6000 to £7000 £500 to £2000

For supply only of a 6-foot-wide sliding gate, the likely cost will be around £500.

An 8-foot-wide will be between £530 to £650, with the price of a 10-foot-wide version being between £600 and £800. A 15-foot sliding gate will cost approximately £900 to £1200 without labour costs.

Sliding driveway gates prices can vary a lot, depending on the size. For a 6-foot wide bi-fold wooden driveway gate, expect the material costs alone to be £1200 to £1800.

Obviously the bigger the gate the more expense will be involved. An 8-foot-wide version will cost £1800 upwards, and a 10-foot-wide gate will be between £2000 and £3000.



A metal bi-fold gate, 2 or 3 metres wide, will cost anywhere between £250 to £450. 3.5 metres in width version will cost around £360 to £440.

A 1.2m x 1.2m farm gate will cost you in the region of £270 to £330, whilst a 3m x 1.2m gate will be about £300 to £360. A 3.6m x 1.2m farm gate will cost about £320 to £400.

When installing a new driveway gate, consider having any additional work done simultaneously. You could add decorative driveway gate posts with additional driveway gatepost lights or flashy driveway gate hinges.

Obviously all this will be at an additional expense. If you need expensive extras such as an electric driveway gates or an automated or retractable driveway gate this can add anywhere from £5000 to £9000 to your initial bill.

Types of Driveway Gate

If you’ve decided you want a driveway gate, but you’re not yet sure what type to choose, below is a selection based on design and material, including the pros and cons of each.

Sliding Driveway Gate Cost

This type of gate slides open, moving on a track with rollers and manual or automated.



Pros:

✔ Manual options are reasonably priced and easy to operate, not affected by the wind when opening and closing, perfect for uneven surfaces or slopes

Cons:

✖ It can be noisy and needs adequate space on one side. They need regular maintenance.


Swinging Driveway Gate Cost

The most common type of driveway gate swings open in two separate halves. It can be locked together in the middle and be either automatic or manual. Generally quiet but susceptible to strong gusts of winds.



Pros:

✔ Less expensive, low automatic maintenance. This type of gate is good if you have a narrow opening and is quieter than a standard swinging gate.

Cons:

✖ Not as secure as a sliding gate. More space needed within the driveway as it will open inwards. The wind can affect them.


Bi-Fold Driveway Gate Cost

Space-saving, this driveway gate's style can half the area needed by an equivalent swinging gate of the same size.



Pros:

✔ Saves space, opens faster, a trackless system option is available

Cons:

✖ Complex installation, expensive, and if using a tracked system, complications such as jamming can arise.


Farm Gate Driveway Gate Cost

Many options available, including manual or automated, metal or timber.



Pros:

✔ Increases security and helps enclose land.

Cons:

✖ Costly if electronic or automatic.


Electric Driveway Gate Cost

This type of gate opens remotely, with a fob or via intercom, easy to open, convenient, in wet or windy weather. Durable and add more to the property’s value than a regular driveway gate.



Pros:

✔ High level of security, easy to use, durable, extra privacy, can add value to your property.

Cons:

✖ Expensive and will stop working should there be a power cut. There is a risk of electrocution, and it is not a suitable project for DIY


Timber Driveway Gate Cost

Many driveway gates are made of wood. Timber gates can provide a traditional look.



Pros:

✔ Gives a traditional look, adds character and can be painted or stained.

Cons:

✖ Erodes faster than metal and split, twist or warp if the gate is not fitted correctly.


Metal Driveway Gate Cost

This style of gate will enhance modern homes. Metal driveway gates are sturdy, long-lasting and require minimal maintenance.



Pros:

✔ Durable and strong, low maintenance, visually enhances modern properties/p>

Cons:

✖ Provide less privacy


What Does Fitting a Driveway Gate Involve?

Below is a step-by-step guide to driveway gate installation from start to finish. The installation will vary depending on the size, type and material required.

Preparation

Before starting the work, the area needs preparation to ensure that the area is clear and ready for the gate installation.

Fitting the Gate Hinges

Next, the gate hinges are fitted. Each gate will have its requirements. A drill and screwdriver may be needed, but bolts can be used instead.

Fitting the Driveway Gate

Mark the hinge plates to fix it in place correctly. The hinge plates then connect to the post as the gate is lifted onto the hinge plates. The gate furniture is then added.



Add the Latch and Bolts

Next, the latch and bolts should be fitted in place to ensure the gate’s security.

Clean Up

Waste can be put a skip, or use a service like a man and a van. Once cleared, the work is finished.

DIY Driveway Gate Installation

You can save several hundred pounds on labour costs with DIY. But driveway gates can be extremely heavy and often need specialist fittings.

Also, a driveway installation is always a two-person job. Setting it up alone can be difficult and sometimes impossible.

There are plenty of hazards and danger that could arise, trying to take this on as a DIY project. You could injure yourself carrying the gate, even with someone helping you.

You might fit the gate badly, but if you're an experienced DIY enthusiast and it is a small gate, then you could probably manage the work yourself.

With regards to whether you will need planning permission or building regulations to erect your driveway gates, below is the official advice on putting up a driveway gate from the planning dept. You can find out more information from the Planning Portal.



You do not need to apply for planning permission if you wish to erect a new; or alter, maintain, improve or takedown* an existing fence, wall or gate if the following conditions are met:

  • in regard to its height:
    • it is next to a highway used by vehicles (or the footpath of such a highway), and it would not exceed one metre in height (from ground level); or
    • it would not exceed two metres in height (from ground level) if elsewhere; or
    • if an existing fence, wall or gate already exceeds the limits above, that would increase its height.
  • No part of the site is a listed building or within the curtilage of a listed building.
  • No part of the fence, wall, gate or any other boundary involved forms a boundary with a neighbouring listed building or its curtilage.
  • The right to put up or alter fences, walls and gates has not been removed by an article four direction or a planning condition.

If any of these conditions are not met, then you will need to apply for planning permission.

If you employ a contractor on your project, they should be licensed, bonded and insured, and have compensation insurance for all employees. Ask for see proof of all the above.

Have a contract in place to cover all aspects of the installation. Important details to include are written completion date; site clean up.

Check who the responsible party for supplying power and communication lines to the gate is; permit fees, and, if needed.

Check whether the contractor will charge a fee to obtain permits and whether there is any hidden conditions clause, such as any extra costs associated with discovering buried boulders, tree roots, utility lines, or unsupportive soil conditions.

Get quotes for the work on an all-inclusive basis. Remember that the lowest bid is not always the best bid and that you will be doing a lot of the work yourself!

Gate Drawings

The purpose of a gate drawing is to help visualise the gate as it would appear when finished. A gate drawing is often required to obtain a permit.

Site Plans

A well laid out plan will highlight where all the wiring is buried. This is useful for future repairs and excavation. A site plan will usually be required when obtaining a permit.

Soil Stability Characteristics

Check your soil conditions before you begin the project. If the soil is wet or has major clay content, you will need additional structural support.

You may need a grade beam or outriggers. Grade beams are concrete beams that connect both posts or columns below grade.

Outriggers are metal arms that extend out in the two directions the gate swings and are anchored in concrete.

Post-holes have to be square, or the gate's swinging motion will eventually enlarge the holes, and your gate will sag.

Underground Service Alerts

Make sure that you get an underground utilities check before excavating. This can be implimented either yourself, or by your contractors.

This will remove any liability should the contractor sever any buried utility lines.

Gate Posts

Steel posts can help either flank the gate on each side or internal steel "skeletons" embedded in masonry columns.

The skeleton sets in the middle of the column footing and holds the hinges, gate operators, equipment vaults, and lighting.

Gate posts should be at least 5 inches x 5 inches and set 36 inches below grade. The hole's minimum width should be 20 inches x 20 inches and contain a minimum of half a yard of concrete per yard.

The holes should be square to prevent loosening by the gate's swinging action.

Gates

Heavier gates tend to last longer. The frame should be at least .120-inch wall thickness, and stakes should be at least .075 inch thick.

The gate must have weep holes to allow trapped moisture to vent, or the gate will rust from the inside out.

Powder-coated finishes are superior to enamel and can last up to 15 years. A good enamel paint job will last up to six years.

Single coat paint jobs, also called primer paints, last only two years at best and should be avoided. Galvanization should be considered if you live near saltwater.

You may powder coat over galvanisation if you prefer a different colour.

Direct Burial & Other Electrical/Communication Lines

National electrical code calls for electrical lines to be buried at least 18 inches underground. Power and communication lines should be at least six inches apart to prevent noise on your telephone or intercom system.

Almost all underground conduit fills up with water. Use wire with appropriate insulation to hold up to these prolonged conditions.

Most single gates (one operator or motor) need ten amps at 110 volts AC. Consult an electrician before laying long runs underground so that you get the right gauge of wire. You should install Splice boxes at least every 200-300 feet.

Entry Systems

There are many entry systems on the market but check whether your chosen system is easily programmed as some are more complex than others.

You may just require a simple keypad or one that communicates through your telephone system. Please note that there is a big diiference in cost difference between the two.

Fire/Medical Emergency Lock

Most municipalities require you to have an emergency lock to allow emergency crews to enter your property without damaging your gate or automation equipment.

Ensure this item is not left out of your installation; you will only have to install it later.

Gate Operators

There are several ways to operate a gate. Swing gates can use three types of operators. A swing arm operator, a ram arm or a jackscrew-operated piston.

The simplest to service and install is the swing arm operator. The advantage of the ram is that it is smaller and takes up less space.

The swingarm is usually the fastest of the operators and handles a gate smoothly, slowing toward each cycle's end. Most ram arms do not have a slow down cycle, and the gates tend to shudder at the end of each cycle.

Lights

Lighting is often located either on top of gate posts or top or the front of columns. The best way to control lighting is with a combination of timer-photocell.

The timer is set to activate in the afternoon and has a photocell located between it and the lights. Once the timer is activated, the photocell prevents the lights from coming on until dusk.

The timer shuts off the lights at a predetermined time, i.e., midnight. In this way, the lighting tracks the seasons, and you do not have to keep adjusting the timer.

Site Cleaning

At the end of a project, the site needs to be cleared. Special circumstances should be discussed with any contractors, such as removing debris. The contractor should always clean up at the end of each day.

Potential Problems and Pitfalls

There are different styles of driveway gates, each with its own set of potential problems and pitfalls.

Sliding Driveway Gate

A sliding driveway gate can be manual or automated. You may find that it can be noisy once installed and needs a lot of maintenance.

Swinging Driveway Gate

A swinging driveway gate is the most popular style and can be automatic or manual. Although a swinging gate is generally quiet, it is not always as secure as a sliding gate and is susceptible to sudden gusts of winds. Allow more space on the driveway to allow the gate to open inwards.



Bi-Fold Driveway Gate

This driveway gate can effectively half the area needed compared with an ordinary swinging gate of the same size. It does involve a complex installation process and is far more expensive than an ordinary swing driveway gate. Issues can also arise if it uses a tracked system.

Farm Gate Driveway Gate

A driveway gate at the front of a farm can increase security and contain livestock. These gates have the option to be either manual or automatic, but the downside is the price as neither are very cheap.

Electric Driveway Gate

The automated element of this type of gate makes it easy to open remotely. The convenience is not having to get out of your car in adverse weather conditions.

These gates are also durable and can add more to a property than a regular driveway gate likely would. They are expensive, and if there is a power failure, they will not work.

There is also a risk of electrocution, and so it's not advisable for a DIY installation.

Timber Driveway Gate

Many driveway gates are made of wood. Timber driveway gates can look beautiful but erode faster than metal. If not fitted correctly can twist, warp and eventually split.

Metal Driveway Gate

Metal driveway gates are also very sturdy, long-lasting and require minimal maintenance. But they do not provide as much privacy, nor do they offer the same aesthetic as a traditional timber gate.


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Sam J

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