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How to choose the best security gate

Due to the high occurrence of opportunistic crime in South Africa, a security gate is a prerequisite for most homes and businesses. A security gate protects people and possessions as it deters criminals from progressing past the entrance, opening or area where the gate is installed. As an extra layer of security, gates help to keep any intruders out. There are many different types available, so it’s hard to know if you are choosing the right option. Here are some questions to ask yourself before deciding.

Seven questions to ask to ensure you choose the best security gate

It’s important to not only understand your security needs but also educate yourself on the features of different security gate options. To avoid wasting your money on an impractical and/or inferior gate, we’ve summarised some of the key questions you need to ask yourself and the supplier before going ahead with installation. 

1. Where will the gate be installed?

First things first, where do you want to put a security gate? Is it a big or small entrance? Solid swing gates are best suited to single-door entrances, whereas retractable gates are better if you want your gate to be “hidden away” when it’s not in use or if it’s for wider entrances. 

Are you looking for a security gate for a hatch or other window-type building opening? Then perhaps a retractable barrier is best so that it’s there when you need it and gone when you don’t. In fact, there are six places where trellis security gates can be installed:

  1. Front doors
  2. Internal doors
  3. Sliding doors or windows
  4. Patios
  5. Hatches
  6. Shopfronts

Another important consideration is whether the gate is for inside or outside a building. This will not only determine the level of weather-proofing needed but also how strong and how visible you want the gate to be. For example, you may want to install a gate in your passage at home that becomes “invisible” security during the day and closes at night to create a safety zone.

2. What level of security do you require?

Linked to the first question, bear in mind the level of security you require. If your home or business is within a secure estate with low crime then you may just need a basic gate that will help ward off opportunistic criminals. However, if you require the best protection there is then you’ll need to invest in a custom-made gate.

3. How much space do you have?

Often, the gate you get is determined by the amount of space you have available. Sometimes there is just not enough space to have a swing gate open. Certainly, one of the main advantages of retractable barriers is that they don’t take up too much space and can be neatly stacked away when not in use. 

4. Who will be using the gate?

Consider who will be using the gate, and how often. The elderly can find it frustrating to slide open an expanding gate, so they may prefer a simple swing gate that is easy to operate – one reason to get one for home or business

5. Do you need a DIY or custom-made solution?

Sometimes all you need is a DIY security gate that you can easily purchase online if your building opening has standard measurements. Ideally, a gate needs to be the perfect fit for optimal reliability and safety, so that may mean you need a custom-made gate.

6. What is the gate made from?

The most robust security gates are made from metal, so your best bet is to find a local reputable metal manufacturer who has a lot of experience making gates.

If you’re specifically looking at swing gates then ones made from metal offer these benefits:

  1. Strength
  2. Durability
  3. Low maintenance
  4. Elegance
  5. Versatility
  6. Customisation

If you’re planning on investing in a retractable gate then these are the must-have features to look for:

  1. No plastic mechanical parts
  2. Steel roller bearings
  3. Robust metal barrier
  4. 4 rows of cross flights
  5. Dovetail aluminium drop bolts
  6. Epoxy powder coated
  7. Secured on four sides within the reveal
  8. Slamlock
  9. Deadlock
  10. Galvanised tracks

7. How does the gate lock?

The locking mechanism on a gate is key (excuse the pun)! Choose a security gate with the toughest lock. A deadlock slamlock system is one of the pros of expandable security gates, while an easy-to-use pin-styled lock is ideal when choosing a swing gate.

It is apparent that there are a lot of things to think about when choosing a security gate that is the best option for your unique requirements. Please chat with our team if you’d like some guidance. We’d love to help you find exactly what you’re looking for.

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