top of page
  • mkaywoodward5

All You Need To Know About Residential Fence Gate

Updated: Jun 7, 2023

This is a two-part series on custom gates from your Houston and Katy pros at Emerson Home Exterior Enhancements. If you missed our first article, take a moment to read it. Today our focus will provide you with all you need to know about driveway gates and residential fence gates, from styles and materials that are available to you to terms you want to be familiar with so that when you are speaking with your local fence company in Katy or need to read instructions to build your own gate, you can more easily follow along.

<img src="residential gates.png" alt="residential fence gate styles">
Residential Fence Gate Styles

First, let’s start with a brief overlap of what we covered in yesterday’s post regarding gates; just in case you missed it, you can also read the article by clicking here.

In part one we covered what a residential fence gate is and how an open gate vs a solid gate differs as well as how the frame of the gate will determine the access you have to either your driveway or backyard. The average driveway gate in Houston should be between 10 and 12 feet while the average residential fence gate is 3 to 4 feet wide. We also explained that if you are going to be purchasing a home you may want to widen the access you have if you are wanting to push items such as a lawn mower, boat, or trailer through the gate and into your backyard. We covered your gate post that is designed to hold the weight of your gate and gave a brief overview of gate latches, and double residential fence gates versus the standard single gate most homeowners have.

Today we are going to focus on how a gate should open, the styles and designs that are available for your residential fence gate from our fence company located on the outskirts of Houston in Katy, and the basic terminology; while many Katy fence companies think of residential fence gates only when designing and installing your fence without a gate functioning as it should the fence is only going to be subpar.

Types of Gates For Your Houston Fence

  • Chain Link Fence Gates:

  • Wood Fence Gates

  • Vinyl Fence Gates

  • Iron or Ornamental Metal Fence Gates

  • Picket Fence Gates

  • Pool Fence Gates

  • Compost Fence Gates

Chain Link Fence Gates: These types of gates can either slide or swing to open, or if you’re a do-it-yourselfer in Houston you may want to purchase what we call a pre-hung gate. Chain link gates are either constructed of steel or aluminum and can be coasted to match the color of your building from back to brown and green or mix it up. With our climate, if you want your chain link fence to be longer lasting, you want to ensure the gate is galvanized. This means the steel wires that are used to build the gate are ensure our residential fence gate lasts asgalvanized to reduce your chance of the gate becoming corroded. If you are trying to get the rust off your residential fence gate you can use a wire bush to remove the dirt and grime that has built up. With proper care of your chain link gate, they can last 20 years cutouts.

Wood Fence Gate: The most popular residential fence gate for Katy homeowners but just because your gate is wooden does not mean you can’t dress it up some by using wood cut outs at the top or sing fixtures and knobs to add more flame to your backyard oasis. The best way to make sure our residential fence gate last lasts long as possible is to use lighter wood, such as cedar, and keep your gate sealed every three years to protect the wood from rotting due to moisture. While you can paint your wood gate using a wood stain or a high-quality acrylic exterior paint for aesthetics, this will not protect the wood unless the stain or paint has a sealer. One question our Katy fence company gets is whether your gate is taller than your fence. Yes! In fact, one of the ways to make your residential fence gate stand out from your fence is for the gate to have taller pickets than the frame of your fence.

Vinyl Fence Gates: Ranging from 3 feet to 8 feet this is a great gate to use for areas around your lawn where you want to prohibit access. These are also popular because they can last for 30 years when installed correctly, and they are virtually maintenance-free, unlike wood fence gates, so while you will spend more money upfront on a vinyl fence gate than on a wood gate over the long run, they come out to be around the same price plus without the hassle and worry.

Iron or Ornamental Metal Fence Gates: You will see these most common around features that need to be secured such as apartment complexes or pools because they are difficult for trespassers to scale when coupled with designs up top. They can also be used around the garden to enhance the beauty of native plants, flowers, or shrubs.

Picket Fence Gates

The term picket fence, which applies to gates as well, goes back to the 1600s; that’s how long these gates have existed, and they are still used today. The word means to pierce because of their pointy shape; think of the look of a white picket fence. If you have a picket fence for a pet enclosure or a pub garden area, then make sure to add a picket fence gate that is designed precisely the same way.


Pool Fence Gates: If you’re a Houston homeowner with a pool, then you are required by law to have a pool barrier that includes a gate, but there are a few regulations you must adhere to meet Texas pool fence and gate requirements. First, the gate must be 48 inches tall with a self-latching mechanism so the gate closes and latches without assistance. The most common pool gates are Metal Fence Gates or vinyl gates

Compost Fence Gates: These are relatively new and growing in popularity because they give you the look of wood without having to permanently fix the fence so if you’re having a TREX fence installed in Houston, then you need a gate that matches it. Trex is the largest supplier of compost fences and gates, plus they come with an unbeatable 25-year warranty.

Gate Terms You May Not Know

Pickets: It’s a vertical piece that makes up the gate's Center leaf. On an aluminum fence, they are; where screwed onto the gate where if your live in Weston Lakes where you have a wrought iron fence, then we weld them to the top rail.

Finals: These are often on aluminum, wrought iron, or metal fence gates; it’s a decorative tip that is welded to make your gate more appealing

Post Caps: At the top of some wooden fence gates there is a cap on the top that makes the gate appear more three-dimensional and will keep water and debris from accumulating on the post.

Brackets: Regardless of what type of residential fence gate you choose, you can improve it and deter sagging over the years from the weight of the gate by adding steel brazes, most commonly seen in the shape of a Z, but our Katy fence company does not believe these work well because gates sagging has more to do with the weight, heights, and style of the gate you choose then instead there is a brace or bracket affixed to the gate.

U Frame: If you have a swing gate wider than your driveway or estate fence, then you do want to add a large gate side frame called a U frame to give it the support it needs; many of the other fence companies in Katy who add driveway gates or walkway gates have an open bottom with a frame that’s only on the side of the frame of your gate, but this is a shoddy gate design.

T Post: If you have a wire fence you are trying to support then you want to make sure to have a T-post added to your fence and gate that will help the gate be anchored to the ground. Most of the T posts out see around Harris and Fort Bend County are made of rail steel.

Studs: Rather you are having a U frame or a T post you will need a stud that holds it all together, what kind of studs to buy depends mainly on instead you’re trying to keep animals in or keep them off your property.

How to choose the right residential fence gate for your Katy Home

Before contacting a local fence company to install you a gate you want to read the regulations and bylaws of your homeowner's association because often, they will dictate what type of residential fence gate you can build on your property. Most of the HOA in Katy and Houston require fences to be standard-sized and to be constructed of cedar to match your wooden fence. Many areas will also not allow you to have a gate or fence in front of your home so check out their websites to make sure you're, complying with the rules.

Gate Opening: Once you know what type of gate you can build you want to decide if you want a swing, cantilever, or rolling gate.

Cantilever: This gate slides open to provide access to your driveway

Swing gate: The most common gate has a hinge that will prevent your gate from sagging and is secured with a latch. When you have a slide gate, you want to make sure that the gate opens inward

Rolling Gates: These gates slide open on wheels or tracks and are a great option if you need a wide opening, such as a driveway gate, to allow cars inside and out. These are often used on apartment gates and commercial properties.


Most Popular Styles of Driveway Gates

<img src="driveway gate.png" alt="ranch style driveway gate in Katy">
Ranch Style Driveway Gate

If you are going to be adding a driveway gate let us provide you with a snap shoot of the most requested driveway gates around the greater Houston area.

Modern: Just as the name refers, this is a contemporary pattern that has clean straight lines either constructed of wood or ornamental metal. You can add many styles, colors, and features that is unique to your property and taste.

Streamlined: These gates are often iron or steel and have a design that allows the property to be showcased not hidden. The top portion of the iron gate can be arched or scalloped to add a subtle classic appeal.

Ornate Classic Gates: If you want a wrought iron gate that is as decorative as it is functional, then this is the driveway gate for you. You can add elaborate features, including lights, spirals, curves, and intricate elements that will make your gate truly one of a kind

Ranch Style: If you want a wooden driveway gate to secure your farm or ranch in Brookshire, Katy, or Rosenberg, this style of the gate will give your property that rustic flare you’re seeking. Most ranch-style or farm-style gates are simple, but more and more people are choosing to modernize them with customization and colors.

Looking For An Affordable Gate in Harris or Fort Bend County?

If you are seeking a fence company in Katy or Houston that offers a variety of residential fence gates look no further than Emerson Home Exterior Enhancements. We have been designing and custom gates for over two decades at prices that are competitive and fair with what others in our industry charge and estimates are absolutely free. Contact us online by filling out our contact form so a friendly staff member can call you back or call 281-545-7740

8 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page