How to Install a Fence Gate | Ask This Old House



Ask This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook helps a homeowner install a new gate to fence in her pet dog.
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Time: 4 hours

Cost: $200-300

Skill Level: Beginner

Shopping List:
Two 5”x5” pressure treated posts
Two gate sections and hardware
Fast-setting concrete

Tools List for Installing a Fence Gate:
Post hole digger
Iron digging bar
4’ Level
Wheelbarrow
Shovel
Scrap boards
Drill/driver

Steps:
1. Drive the post hole digger into the ground, separate the handles, and set aside any soil the digger collects. Do this until you have two holes each about 30” deep.
2. If objects like a brick or rock are encountered that the post hole digger can’t remove, an iron digging bar can help loosen the object.
3. When the hole is close to the desired depth, the round end of the digging bar can be used to compact the soil in the hole to its final level.
4. Use the level to ensure the post is plumb in both directions.
5. Fill the hole with a few inches of soil to hold the post plumb. Use the round end of the digging bar to compact that soil.
6. Mix the concrete in the wheelbarrow with a little bit of water. Ensure the water is spread evenly throughout the mix, but don’t let the mix get too wet.
7. Fill around the post evenly with concrete until the concrete is 3” below grade. A piece of scrap wood can be used to compact the concrete and remove air bubbles.
8. When setting the second post, use a board and the level to ensure both post heights are the same.
9. Once the post is plumb, use a scrap board the width of the finished gate as a spacer to keep the correct distance between both posts.
10. Predrill and then attach the hinges to the gate sections.
11. Predrill and attach the hinges to the posts using lag screws.
12. Attach locking hardware and drop rod to the gate.

Resources:
For a custom opening like this, a fence contractor could fabricate a custom gate to fit your opening.

Expert assistance with this project was provided by Pro Fence Company (

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Homeowners have a virtual truckload of questions for us on smaller projects, and we’re ready to answer. Ask This Old House solves the steady stream of home improvement problems faced by our viewers—and we make house calls! Ask This Old House features some familiar faces from This Old House, including Kevin O’Connor, general contractor Tom Silva, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, and landscape contractor Roger Cook.

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How to Install a Fence Gate | Ask This Old House

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Comments

  • Friday 2/21/2020 https://imgflip.com/i/3pwze4

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • ¡bueno! https://imgflip.com/i/3ptail

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • samsung.com https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vRZiF_uOvv4

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=DPleunI_C48

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • 🎵 https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_keMcnUX3WA

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • When I die, https://imgflip.com/i/3plp6h I'm so proud of the squad

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • https://imgflip.com/i/3plni7 FrankShinandAssociates.com R Shin

    Arlo Cordell May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • They sell a tool that turns your shop vac into a post hole digger
    #LessLabor
    #NoDigging

    Moose Stubbings May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Hmmm … I’ve built a lot of fence and some heavy gates and I never use concrete with a wooden post. Always compacted 3/4 crush. Fewer problems with rotting, much easier removal when the inevitable time comes and yet it is solid and secure as long as it is deep enough to accommodate frost.

    Doug Thomson May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Concrete not needed; backfill with soil-less cracked rock and vigorously pound the fill with piece of 2×4 frequently while backfilling. This allows water to flow away better

    Nick Guthrie May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • You’re in Boston…. you get snow in the winter and really cold weather I assume… so why do you only go 30 inches deep?? The frost line is 36 to 40 isn’t it? You need 8 to 10 inches beyond that

    Nobody Special May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Post against the house that close bad idea

    m3c43 May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Great job ask someone else to do your job

    m3c43 May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • You really don't want your post touching that wood trim on the house, what will happen is that both pieces will accumulate water and both pieces will rot, and you will need to replace the fence post and the wood trim piece on your siding. The idiot builders on my home made this mistake and now I have to replace both. Either put some good flashing in between but preferrably get the post about 2" off the house and put a piece of fencing on it to the desired gap.

    BloodlineMedia May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • I cant stand the Patri*ts

    Ben Reeve May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • over kill is da bomb!!

    John Contos May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • You guys are top notch, one of the best!!

    Sam Naghoon May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • love how they say con-crete instead on concrete.

    Joe Stacks May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • I use an iuhn bah
    love his accent

    Andrew Crawley May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • One Pharrrrttt

    David Bach May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • I say use the post to tamp down the dirt.

    Susan Szeszol May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Want us to pay $200-$300 for this and make us do half the work to

    D Gaming May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • “This is going to keep that gate from rhauwking”

    Tinh In NH May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Overkill for such a small fence 🙂

    Jay May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • H h

    Rachael E Covey May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Roger, are you really gonna make that tiny woman dig a hole with a post hole digger? That's the worst way to dig a hole! Looks great!

    Andrew Joseph May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • "Fence in her pet dog". Well, I know dog's aren't smart but I'm pretty sure it would just go 20ft around that stone wall at 1:31.

    Oscar Muffin May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply
  • Why didn they design the thing with the handles curving out at the top so avoid a knucklebuster?

    Brian M. B. Pedersen May 23, 2020 4:31 am Reply

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