There’s something about deck gates that make your outdoor space feel more secure. Not only does it provide you with a sense of privacy, but it also keeps kids and pets safely inside the deck – which is very useful if you have stairs leading up to your deck.
Also, you can’t deny the fact that a deck gate adds a certain charm to your deck. And the best part about it is that you can personalize how you want it to look, so you can go wild in designing it to your liking.
If you’re interested in building a deck gate, then you came to the right place. Here are the simple steps that you should follow in order to build your own deck gate, as well as other tips to make the job easy and safe. Do not worry! if you need any professional handyman to do the job for you, we are here to help you.
Building A Deck Gate : Preliminaries
Before you begin, it’s important to have all the materials gathered to save you a lot of time. For this project, you will be needing the following tools and materials:
- 2x4s, preferably of high-quality lumber
- 2×2 balusters
- Drill or screwdriver
- Wood screws
- Table saw
- Gate hinges
- Gate Latch
- Metal corner braces
- Measuring tape
Also, we want to emphasize that building a deck requires you to comply with the International Residential Code to make sure that it’s safe enough to protect your family. Before proceeding with this project, we recommend taking a look at the safety code for deck gates.
And while we’re on the topic of safety, make sure that you’re wearing the appropriate safety gear before proceeding. This includes safety goggles, gloves, and a dust mask.
The first step in building a deck gate is to take the measurements of the gap where the gate will be mounted. You can simply use this by running the tape measure across the gap for the width, and from the bottom to the top for its height.
However, these dimensions merely serve as a guide to helping you determine the size of the gate – and not the dimensions for the gate itself.
You have to subtract an inch from the width to facilitate in the gate’s swinging. Additionally, you have to take note that the bottom edge of the gate should not be more than 4 inches above the floor of your deck. The top portion should also have an allowance of one inch for where you have to mount the gate hardware. Use these guidelines to help you design your gate.
At this point, you now have the design and corresponding dimensions for your deck gate. Use these details to cut the wood accordingly.
Take note that while we recommend using premium lumber for this project, you have the option to replace it with whatever material you think works best for your deck.
Once you’ve cut all the pieces of your gate, you can now piece them together with the help of the wood screws. This is also the step where you have to make all the finishing touches like painting in your design or adding a protective coating to the wood.
If you chose to paint or coat your gate, we recommend waiting for it to dry before proceeding to the next step. A day of leaving it to dry would be enough.
Now, you can already see what your gate will look like. You now begin mounting the corner braces on all corners of the frame. You can do so by drilling the screws in place to make sure that they’re secure.
After drilling the corner braces, you can now proceed with attaching the hinges and the latch. Make sure that the hinges will be able to support the weight of the gate once it’s mounted onto your deck. Also, don’t make the mistake of attaching the latch on the same side as the hinge – it should always be on the opposite side. Otherwise, that defeats the purpose of the deck gate.
And finally, you can now mount the gate to the deck. You can do so by drilling the other end of the hinges onto the part of the deck where you want it mounted.
But before doing so, make sure to check how the gate swings and its distance from the floor. The safety code requires deck gates to swing away from the stairs, and that there should be a distance of the bottom edge from the floor should not be more than 4 inches. Perform this final check before mounting the gate.
Once you have the gate mounted, you can now enjoy the safety and privacy of having your own deck gate.
Why should I build a deck gate?
A deck gate serves to enclose your deck or patio. As a result, you’re assured that kids or pets won’t easily escape or accidentally fall from the deck – which is especially helpful if you have a flight of stairs going to your deck. This gives you a lot of peace of mind.
How wide should the deck gate be?
The width of your deck gate depends on the width of the opening. We recommend measuring the opening first and subtract an inch from it – the difference is the ideal width for your deck gate. This space will make sure that the gate will be able to swing smoothly when you open it.