Wooden gates or aluminium gates – which is right for you?
When it comes to choosing what your gates are made from, wood is often the first choice for many homeowners. When new, it looks great and has a distinct aesthetic appeal that remains popular. Wood is a traditional material, and therefore often viewed as worth the extra maintenance that it may require. However, there are a number of alternatives to wood, with aluminium being increasingly popular with discerning homeowners.
So, can anything really compete with the natural appeal of wood and what are the advantages and disadvantages of wood versus aluminium?
The appeal of wooden gates
As wood is natural, no two wooden gates are entirely the same. They have a timeless quality that appeals to many people, and the colour and finish of the gates can be customised and changed over time. But there are also problems with wooden gates.
Without proper maintenance, wood will soon deteriorate and need replacing. They will eventually rot no matter how much they are painted or treated. Wood also absorbs water when it’s wet and dries out when the weather improves. Consequently, wooden gates expand when wet and shrink as they dry out. This means that hinges have to deal with the changing weight of the gates they support.
While the initial finish may look great, it will take considerable maintenance to keep it looking anywhere near as good. Even then, it’s still likely to deteriorate somewhat over time.
Heavy to automate
If you want to automate your gates, then wood is not necessarily the best choice. It’s generally heavier to begin with than many of the alternatives, and when it rains, without correct surface protection, it will soak up moisture and get heavier still. This means that wooden gates will take considerable power to operate. A heavier gate needs a stronger motor to get it moving and to stop it. It also needs stronger moving parts, like hinges, to take the strain.
Taking into account the maintenance and weight issues, is there a low-maintenance, lightweight alternative for making gates that look as good as wooden gates?
Is aluminium a good alternative?
When many people are told that aluminium gates might be a sensible option for their property initial fears are often about how the gates will look. Surely aluminium is never going to look as good as traditional materials like wood or wrought iron, right?
Beautiful designs and finishes
Because aluminium is lightweight, it’s the perfect construction material for beautiful gates. A wide range of finishes are available, with some that imitate the look of various woodgrains. In fact, it can be very difficult to tell the difference between wooden gates and aluminium gates with a wood finish. No matter what the style of your home and garden, aluminium is a great choice when it comes to colour, design and finish.
Light but strong
Aluminium is an ideal material for automated gates. It may not be as strong as steel, but its corrosion-resistant qualities mean that it will retain its strength for much longer. It gives you strength and durability, but the lightness of the material means that the gates are much easier to operate.
Weather resistant & low maintenance
Aluminium gates offer the ultimate in weather resistance and will retain their good looks for years to come with minimal maintenance.
Even if you’ve set your heart on wooden gates it may be worthwhile taking a look at aluminium gates. Combining good looks, and high levels of durability, they’re the best solution for most environments.
Take a look at the Stargate range of aluminium gates today.