Installing automated aluminium driveway gates

Gate automation is one of the best options to make sure your property is secure. Automatic aluminium gates offer convenience, security and also add value to any property – plus that all-important curb appeal! Our customers say they feel much more safe and secure, especially at night or when they are away from home, after having their automated gates installed. 

Below are four important things to think about, when installing your automated aluminium driveway gates.

Planning permission – do you need it?

Good news! You don’t need to apply for planning permission if you wish to install new aluminium driveway gates, or alter, maintain, improve or take down* existing ones so long as the following conditions are met:

In regards to height:

  • If they are next to a highway used by vehicles (or the footpath of such a highway), the gates should not exceed one metre in height (from ground level)
  • If they are anywhere else, they should not exceed two metres in height (from ground level) 
  • If you have existing gates that you wish to replace which exceed the limits above, then their height should not be increased.
  • No part of the site is a listed building or within the curtilage of a listed building.
  • No part of the gates or any other boundary involved form a boundary with a neighbouring listed building or its curtilage.
  • The right to put up or alter fences, walls and gates has not been removed by an article four direction or a planning condition.

 If any of these conditions are not met, then you will need to apply for planning permission.

*If you live in a conservation area, you might need permission to take down a fence, wall or gate, so this is worth checking. 

At Ironcraft, we can help and advise you, but it’s always a good idea to double-check – you can read more about planning permission here.


The size of vehicles driving through your gates

It’s important to consider this. In addition, if your driveway is curved, you may require larger gates to allow vehicles plenty of space to turn as they enter. This is worth thinking about if you are caravaners – a gate is a great addition to your property's security, but you need to ensure that you leave as much room to manoeuvre as possible. 


The good news is that when you order your aluminium driveway gates with Ironcraft, our director Darren will personally come out to your home, to double-check all your requirements and measurements. So don’t worry – you're in safe hands! 


Think about maintenance 

Even though aluminium gates are virtually maintenance-free (one reason we love them!), it’s still important to check them – especially the automation. We are proud to be a part of the Gate Safe initiative, a registered charity founded specifically to improve standards of safety for the installation and maintenance of automated gates and barriers.


Once we have installed your gates, we offer annual maintenance reminders to ensure that your system remains safe. Under the current Machinery Directives Regulations and EN12605, it is now a legal requirement that automation systems are fully compliant when installed and are subject to regular service procedures thereafter. As such, our automated gates are all subject to a 12-month guarantee. Once this has expired, we offer a choice of annual maintenance reminders to ensure that your system is safe and legally compliant – stress-free! 


Swing or slide: how much space do you have?

You’ll need to decide how your new gates will open – swing or sliding? Typically, sliding gates are reserved for more commercial projects, however domestic settings have opted for a decorative sliding gate! They are particularly good if you are lacking in space. We have put together a few points to consider when selecting the right mechanism for your home: 


Typically, gates that swing towards your home are suitable:

  • Where there is enough room between the entrance and property to accommodate the fully-open gates
  • Where there is enough room to clear the fully-open leaf(s) whilst negotiating any curves or bends in the drive
  • Where the ground over which the gates will swing is level to avoid contact with the bottom of the gates

Typically, gates that swing away from your home are suitable:

  • Where the ground over which the gates will swing is sufficiently level to avoid contact with the bottom of the gates (or drops lower) 
  • Where there is ample room for the gates to swing outwards without encroaching onto a main road/ pavement 
  • Where there isn’t enough room on the driveway to accommodate the open gates 

Typically, sliding gates are suitable for:

  • Drives that turn sharply left or right
  • Wide driveway openings
  • Small spaces where there isn’t enough space for the gate to open inwards or outwards
  • Maximising space on your driveway

We are always happy to provide support and advice – just pop in and see us or call our team on 01455 847 548.


Pennsylvania aluminium driveway gate