Why Would You Need a Spring Loaded Gate Wheel?
Gate wheels are a great option if you want to give large gates a little more support. They are installed on the swinging edge of the gate and take some of the weight off the gate post and hinges. This helps to ensure that the gate won’t sag, and that it is easier to open and close.
However, gate wheels are not all created equal. If you’re wondering if you need a spring loaded gate wheel, here’s what you need to know.
What Is a Spring Loaded Gate Wheel?
Spring loaded gate wheels, as the name suggests, are gate wheels that have a spring integrated into their design, which allows for the gate wheel to move up and down. As you can see in this image, for a Shepherd Hardware 9785 4-Inch Spring Loaded Gate Caster, which is available from Amazon, there is a spring above the gate wheel, which allows the wheel to move up and down as necessary.
How Is a Spring Loaded Gate Wheel Installed?
In order for a spring loaded gate wheel to be effective, it needs to be installed on the lower edge of your gate. The design options for this vary according to the type of gate and the site requirements. Some spring loaded gate wheels are simply bolted to the bottom of the center gate style, while others are built into a special notched area.
There are a large variety of spring loaded gate wheels with different types of wheel, different color springs and hardware and more. Some are installed with bolts, while you can use tech screws or self-drilling screws with others. It all depends what kind of gate you have, and how heavy it is.
Can You Add a Gate Wheel After a Gate Is Installed?
If you have installed a gate and then found that it's sagging and needs a little extra help, adding a bolt on spring loaded gate wheel is a great option. The spring makes this type of gate wheel more forgiving, and if you choose an easy bolt on or screw on option, it's relatively easy to install even when your gate is already hung.
Why Might You Need a Spring Loaded Gate Wheel?
Now that you know what a spring loaded gate wheel is, what it looks like, and how it is installed, it’s time to decide if you need this kind of hardware on your gate.
Gate wheels are installed on swing gates when they need a little extra support. This usually means the gate is larger, heavier or wider than normal, and without the wheel, the gate would sag in the middle.
This is fine if the ground or surface under the gate is reasonably even, but when it’s slightly sloped or paved with something that has a little texture, a regular gate wheel won’t work. This is when your fence company might recommend that you use a spring loaded gate wheel instead. It will still carry the weight of the gate and be able to cope with the slight elevation changes.
When You Need Custom Gates, Talk to a Professional
As you can see, there are so many variations to the “standard” gate design that need to be made if your site, your gate opening size, or your fence line are even a little different.
It’s very rare that you can purchase an off the shelf gate and make it work, and often, that’s reserved for smaller residential gates.
If you have a complex site and fence line, and you need gates that will work for your specific needs, the best thing you can do is talk to a professional.