sweetgates.com
(424) 280-6081

 

FAQ:

 

Information:

    Feel free to ask if you have any questions. I often assist customers in deciding the right gate for their home.

 

Technical Issues:

    - Arched gates are generally the same height as the wall or fence.  If your wall or fence is 6 feet tall, order a 6 foot tall arched gate. If the wall or fence is 5 feet, order a 5 foot arched gate, etc.  Flat Top gates need to be a little shorter than the wall or fence because GATES SIT UP OFF THE WALKWAY 1 1/2" - 2" for clearance.

    - If you are setting wood posts, add 1/2" to the width of the gate opening for clearance.  For example, if you want a 38" gate, simply make the gate opening 38 1/2" wide (measured between wood posts).  Order a 38" wide gate and you will be good to go.  If you are constructing a masonry opening, add 4" for clearance (wood jambs add 3 1/2").  For example, if you want a 38" gate, make the gate opening 42' wide (measured between finished masonry structures).

    - GATE SWING:  In-swing provides a cleaner look from the street (outside of the gate).  The hinges and latch are then on the inside, which provides better security.  However, if there is a pool, the gate must be out-swing.  The decision depends on the situation, but unless circumstances exist, I recommend in-swing.  Next is whether the gate swing is left hand or right hand.  The question is: as you open the gate towards you, which side are the hinges going to be on?  Your left or right.  Think about the pathway and walking flow around the gate when you make this decision.  Refer to the GATE SWING DIAGRAMS below which helps to make this decision easy to visualize.  There are four possible choices.  Just select the one that works best for your situation.

 

A Note About Wood Gates:

    - Wood gates need protection from the elements.  Mostly from sunlight.  If the location for your gate receives extended durations of intense sun, it would be best to provide shade in the form of foliage or structure such as an arbor.  The wood must not be allowed to dry out.  Protect your beautiful wood gate by simply applying wood finish.  This should be done yearly until the gate is seasoned, then you can back off on the yearly applications.  The factory applied product is easy to use, and cleans up with water.  A little care goes a long way to protect your investment, and is the single most important maintenance issue with a wood gate.  The standard finish is: BEHR Solid Color Wood Stain.  Color charts and sample cans of stain are available at Home Depot.


    -  Please Note: wood gates should be allowed to cure for one or more weeks after they are built, before they are exposed to the elements.  This is especially true for the Premium Redwood Gates.

 

Gate Do's & Don'ts:

Do:

    - Since gates are an important component in a comprehensive landscape plan, I recommend planning early and ordering on time.  That way you will have the gates on time.  The gates are high quality.  Each one takes days to build.  Craftsmanship takes time so please plan as soon as you can.

    - Keep gate closed and latched at all times.  If the gate needs to be left open say for moving furniture or doing yard work, positively keep it in position with a door stop, bungee cord, rope, cane bolt, etc.

    - Inspect the gate yearly to be sure the wood has adequate finish.  Apply wood finish as required.  WOOD GATES MUST BE PROTECTED JUST LIKE HUMAN SKIN.  If it is cared for your wood gate will last for decades and look beautiful too.  If it isn't protected, the gate will be subject to early failure from exposure to the elements.

    - Check and gently snug any loose nuts when you inspect the gate.

Don't:

    - Let gate slam from wind or other means.

    - Let the gate open into items that will damage either the gate or the items.  Install a gate bumper, available in the "Gate Options" section.

    - Let sprinklers or water spray on gate.

    - Let anyone run into the gate with trash cans, bicycles, skateboards or other items like basketballs.

    - Allow your gates to be an afterthought.  With over 35 years of residential construction experience I have seen it happen often.  Hopefully this information will help break this tendency in both new construction, and especially subsequent landscaping projects when homeowners replace their old gates.  PLEASE DON'T ORDER LATE.

    - Step-by-step instructions outline installation of the gate and jambs.  If you need the gate installed please refer to the "Listing Of Qualified Gate Installers" on the Installation page.
  


Tips On Finding A Good Gate Installer:

    - In general, the best thing is to get a referral from someone who has had a gate installed or other quality work done by the individual.  References are also a good way to verify qualifications.  If you have a chance to see actual gate installations yourself, that would be a great way to determine qualifications.

    - When an installer is located you could provide him with a link to this website.  The Gate Installation Instructions provide guidance for the entire process.

 

Installation Tips:

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Q - "Do you deliver and install?"
A - No. 
Customers are welcome to come to the shop and pickup the gates.  Gates are stained, fully assembled and ready to install.


Q - "Do you ship?"
A - Yes.  Crating starts at $125 and shipping starts at about $150.  Please provide your address in the order form for a shipping quote.


Q - "What are your payment options?"
A - In order to keep prices reasonable I prefer cash for old world craftsmanship, please.

Q - "How much money do you need to get started?"
A - 60% deposit for non-custom size gates without custom options if you are coming to pick up your gate.  Paid in full if it is custom or shipped.


Q - "How long does it take to have a gate made?"
A - It varies.  Two to ten weeks depending on shop load and the complexity of your order.  Check when your order is completely ready to execute and I will give you an ETA at that time.


Q - "Do we need to do any planning for our new gate?"
A - Yes, you should determine the optimum location, size and swing for your new gate.  It's also a good idea to know what options you will need early on.  It can save you time and money, and prevent delays.

Q - "Do you have any gates in stock?"
A - Not yet.  Some gate sizes will be available in stock in the near future.


Q - "What kind of wood are the gates made from?"
A - Clear Redwood and 'B' grade Redwood.  The center boards are 1 x 6 tongue and groove with 1 x 4 face frames on both sides.

Q - "How thick are the gates?"
A - About 2 1/8" around the perimeter, and 3/4" in the center.

Q - "What kind of finishes are available?"
A - Acrylic solid color wood stain is applied to the gates during manufacturing.  Optional stains, paint, natural oil finish and spar polyurethane is also available.

Q - "Can the gates be locked?"
A - Yes.  The simplest is a pad bolt.  There are deadbolt options as well

Q - "Can you come to our house and measure the gate opening?"
A - Yes.  Please submit a Site Visit form.

Q - "I love the gates but don't know how to proceed.  Can you help me decide which gate or options are best for me?"
A - Absolutely.  Simply fill out the Request Total Price form.  Let me know what options you are interested in (in the notes field)
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Q - "Can I measure the opening myself?"
A - Yes. Simply measure the width and the height of the opening.  Please refer to "Measuring The Gate Opening" for guidance (Gate Planning page).

Q - "I see that the gates come in even inch widths and even foot heights.  Do you make custom sizes?"
A - Yes.  Gates ere made to specific or 'custom' size widths and heights.  Just provide measurements of your opening and I will calculate the gate size for you.

Q - "What is included in the gate prices?"
A - Hinges are mounted on the gate.  Bolts to install the gate, matching gate stop and screws are also included.  The labor to apply two coats of the solid color stain of your choice.

Q - "My opening has wood posts, what else do I need besides the gate and included accessories?"
A - A latch.  The ring latch is the most popular latch.  For gates up to 41" wide the small ring latch is $75.  Gates 42" wide and above the large ring latch is $110.  Prices include installation of the ring latch.

Q - "My opening is masonry, what else do I need besides the gate and included accessories?"
A - A latch, wood jambs and jamb anchor kit.  See ring latches above.  Wood jambs run around $60.  The anchors vary depending on the anchor type and size of the jambs.

Q - "My gate opening faces South.  The existing wood gate is in bad shape after many years of sun exposure.  Should I replace it with another wood gate?"
A - Not unless you can provide adequate shade for the new wood gate.  Intense sunny exposures should be mitigated by providing an arbor with foliage or a tree to the South to shade and protect the gate from excessive sunlight.  Sunny exposures will require more frequent applications of wood finish.

Q - "Do you build driveway gates?"
A - Not wide ones. The widest gates I make are 98" wide split gates.

Q - "Do you have gates without the black bolts showing?
A - Yes.  There are several options for gates without the black bolts.

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