Should Automatic Gates Open Outward or Inward?

Posted by Steve Jones 16/08/2017 1 Comment(s) Gate Automation,

|Should automatic gates open inwards or outwards


Automatic swing gates open either outward away from the property or inward towards the property. But how is this chosen? What factors govern which way gate automation is installed on gates?

Here’s our quick guide:

  1. Gates that open outward

Automatic gates opening outwards on sloping driveGates that open outward open onto pathways and even into the road. This is not acceptable for safety reasons and because they could cause an obstruction. Unless there is sufficient space on the property to accommodate them opening fully, swing gates should open inwards towards the prepertry.


  1. Gates that open onto rising driveways


Swing gates with big gap at the bottom to clear rising drive

Swing gates swing open with the edge that is furthest from the hinge executing an arc of a circle. The base of the gate will travel across flat ground at the same height from the ground throughout this arc. If the ground rises, the gate will hit it. This means that driveways that have slope upward cause problems.

Possible solutions for this issue include special hinges that open the gates at an angle, or installing the gates on higher hinges. Both are troublesome and the second can create gates with a large gap under them when closed.

If there’s no room for gates to swing open outward, sliding gates offer an alternative that avoids the problem.





  1. Gates that open onto obstacles

Swing gates hitting obstaclesOpening swing gates with no obstacle detection will hit anything in their path. This means that the area swing gates cover as they open must be clear of parked cars, walls, the property, plants etc to ensure that the gates can fully open.


  1. Open gates that are an obstacle

Swing gates could become an obstacle when open. If you have a large parking area inside your gates, it’s easy to consider where to park with the gates closed. But in order to get through your gates, they need to be open. When they are open, they are inside the area that you park in. This obstacle could block access to parts of a driveway or prevent parking in parts of the parking area.


  1. Swing gates act like sails

If you often experience wind blowing through your gateway, this wind will act on swing gates. Fully boarded gates have no gaps in them and act like a sail when wind blows on them. They need more force to open them when wind is blowing against the direction of movement. But swing gates start in a position 90 degrees from the position they finish in. So a operating may have no wind blowing on it at the start and be affected by all the prevailing wind at the end.


Swing gates come in many different designs with a range of ways to automate them. How they actually move and where they move during operation is important and worth understanding when considering automatic swing gates for your unique application.


Contact Linkcare on 01895232626 to find out more.

1 Comment(s)

G. Edgell:
16/11/2019, 04:25:23 PM

I found your article very informative and would like your opinion, if possible. I'm considering replacing my current gates with automated ones. The gates in situe at present are manual and open outwards as my drive way is very steep. There is a space of about 6-7 feet from the gateposts to the edge of the lane therefore allowing room for my 4'(x2) gates to open outwards which they do at the moment against hedges on either side. I am thinking of having 5'(x2) gates installed.. In this situation, would automated gates be feasible as well as safe? Thanks

18/11/2019, 09:34:57 AM

Hi,There are several issues to consider. The first thing is who owns the land between your gate and the lane. If it belongs to you there should not be a legal issue, if it does not you will have to ask permission from the landowner who may be the local council.Assuming the land is yours, you must ensure sufficient safety devices are installed to ensure that you gates are not a danger to people or vehicles.You should also consider how busy the lane is, as you will not be able to pull off the lane before the gates are open.You should also fit a set of safety beams beyond the end of the open leaf to prevent the gates closing whilst you are pulling out, so you need to have the space to do this.If you have the space and level ground from side to side, you could consider replacing the gates with sliding gates, either as a one piece gate or as a telescopic gate or bi-parting gate to save space.If you would like to discuss this further please call us on 01895232626

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