Gate Measurements – Make Them Correctly

Gate Measurements - Make Them Correctly

How to Make Your Residential Gate Measurements

Gate Measurement Mulholland Brand

Should you want to give a contractor the correct gate measurements, here is your basic “how-to”.  This is a basic guide for you to get in the right “ballpark” on the dimensions and measurements for your project. Prior to the fabrication of your project, we will send a technician out to get exact measurements, determine the slope, and post and ground conditions.

Take measurements “a” through “d” if you are measuring for a walkway pedestrian gate, and “e” through “h” if you are taking measurements for a wider, driveway type gate. With the wide driveway gate (for distances f,g, and h), you may need another person to keep the measuring tape straight and level or a laser tape measure that can be purchased at better hardware stores.


Whether it be for the more narrow pedestrian or the broader driveway gate, the maximum gate height you will want will be the shorter-side height. Then, subtract a couple of inches to clear any gravel or lawn. Or, more than 2″ if the swinging open of your gate has to accommodate a hill. (See the second figure.) Determine your gate height from this equation.


It is important to note whether you intend for us to supply the posts in your gate installation. If we are replacing a previous system, we may be able to use what you have in place. But, unless you are very experienced in gate installation, we don’t expect you to be able to answer that. We will inspect the posts at the time we give you an estimate.

If we are replacing a current installation, give us the distances between posts. Then, whether we replace the posts or reinforce them, you’ll have a close estimate of the actual dimensions of your replacement gate.

Measure the entrance width at the top, middle, and bottom. But, take care to make the measuring tape straight in all cases; in the wider gate you’ll need another to assist you, or a laser tape measure, as mentioned earlier.

Of the three width measurements you get, please choose the smallest measurement as your gate width.

The slope of the hill in gate measurement

Is the slope of the ground an Issue in the fabrication or installation of your gate? Then you are going to have to calculate the amount of the slope. But that’s the task of an expert.

slope of ground

Three different slopes, X,Y, and Z

There are three different slopes that gate installers and fabricators need to pay attention to. To talk about them we are going to refer to them as “X”, “Y”, and “Z”. However, these are not official names. We are just using them here to associate our explanation with the image above.

Generally speaking, yard gates swing inwards, as in “X” above. If the ground immediately inward from your gate slopes to a greater height, the gate will need to be made at a smaller height. This is so it can pass over that increase. For a gate to swing inwards, the only other solutions would be to level the ground or to install a sliding gate.

You can install your gate to open outwards, as in “Y”, if the gate does not cross a public sidewalk or open out onto a public street. If you want to do this, you need to survey to determine if there is an increase in the height of the ground in an outward direction, and shorten the gate to accommodate that, or level the ground, or install a sliding gate.

Look at Figure “Z’. Please note that I have attempted to portray a post that is on uneven ground in relation to the plane of where the gate will be installed. We often are called upon to install gates on such properties. If we need to install your property on uneven ground, we will need to make adjustments in the actual fabrication of the gate, as you can see in these installations:

Powder-coated White Glass & Aluminum Sliding Driveway Gate

Driveway Gate & Pedestrian Gate Profile 24 with Glass

Experts need to measure and survey your gate and fence installation

Make sure whoever is measuring your gate and fence for fabrication and installation really knows what they are doing! It’s vital that they are careful and conscientious as they measure.

In conclusion:

First, we work out the details of what you want in your project. Then we will send our measuring personnel to your property to work out all the measurements. We’ll do it right the first time. You’ll have a gate installation that will be beautiful. And, it will safeguard your loved ones and your possessions. Very importantly, it will function well for a very long time.

We don’t expect you to do this yourself! But we think it is important for you to know these basics. We are happy to answer your questions. We want to help you in any way to make sure everything is a success in your project. Connect with us through chat, by form, or by giving us a call at 818.639.3820 and we’ll help you with every aspect of your project.