How to fit gate posts to a wall

By far the easiest of the gate posts to fix and supplied in the same material as your gates (softwood gates then softwood fixing stiles etc.) so everything matches, used for fixing to a wall or other structure and fixed by either frame fixings or masonry screws/bolts.

Concreting posts into the ground? Please see our guide showing you how to sink your posts into the ground

With posts that are sunk into the ground the bigger the post size the better, however with wall fixing posts the narrower (to an extent) the better as the gate post or fixing stile is only as strong as the method of fixing to the wall – if you opt for something like a 150mm square post then you’ve got a lot of timber to get through before you get a fixing so in the case of a wall fixing gate post this would be weak! Ideally choose a gate post that is large enough to fix you hinges to but not overly large (our fixing stiles come in two standard sizes of 58mm and 70mm thick) but other sizes can be machined upon request.

Before fitting the fixing stiles it is always a good idea to get at least one coat of your chosen finish on the stiles, especially on the rear of the stile (the side that would be against the wall) and underneath the stiles as you will not be able to access these once fitted. When fitting keep the fixing stile up from the ground approx 50mm (when fitting your gates you need to leave a clearance gap underneath, normally this is around 50mm/2 inches, so whatever gap you keep under the gates keep the same under the fixing stiles), you don’t want it coming into contact with the ground as during wet weather it may be sitting in a pool of water and is then liable to soak the moisture up.

Fixing the gate posts to a wall

1 – Don’t forget to get a coating of paint or stain onto all sides of the gate post, don’t forget to also coat the top and underneath of the post. (In the video I’ve used a post without any coatings, this was just for the benefit of the video as it made everything show up a bit better!).

2 – Start off by positioning your gate post/fixing stile in the desired location.

2 – Keep the post off the floor (so it’s not sitting in any water) and lines up with the gates when hung (normally you aim to keep the gates off the floor by around 50mm (2 inches) – so aim for the same gap underneath the post.

3- When the gate post is in position, check it for plumb (level in the vertical, don’t worry yet about whether your wall is plumb!) and when satisfied it is mark the position of the post on the wall with a pencil.

Pack gates posts plumb on wall

4 – Keeping the gate post in position on the wall, mark off (on the post) where the fixings will be (aim for the centre of the brickwork). In a 1830mm (6ft) tall post I’d go for at least four fixings to the brickwork.

5 – Once the position of the fixings are marked upon the gate post, remove from wall and drill countersink holes (large enough to accommodate the head of the masonry screws/bolts or frame fixings). Aim to get the head of the fixings just below the surface.

6 – Once countersink holes are drilled, using the correct sized drill bit (size will depend on the fixings you use, in the case of the masonry bolts I’m using in the video an 8mm bit is required) drill the holes for the shaft of the fixing right through the gate posts (when drilling the holes right through the gate posts, rest the posts on a scrap piece of timber directly under each hole – saves bursting out the back of the post!).

7 – Now it’s time for your masonry drill, position gate post back in place (using the pencil lines you marked on the wall) and drill through the gate posts the required depth into the wall (if using masonry screws/bolts then you can drill a hole at a time, then place the bolts/screws in and then move onto the next holes. If using frame fixings, see below).

8 – As mentioned at 7 you can if using the masonry screws/bolts drill a hole and insert the screws/bolts a hole at a time. Alternatively, drill all holes then insert the fixings all at once and tighten up.

9 – Check post for plumb at both the side of the post and face of the post.
If the post is not plumb on the side, then slightly loosen fixings and adjust accordingly.
If the post is not plumb with the level sitting on the face of the post, then loosen relevant fixings and insert packers between gate post and wall and repeat until face of gate post is plumb. Once plumb re-tighten fixings and check for plumb once more.

10 – Once gate posts are plumb remember to seal between wall and post with a good quality silicone, paying particular attention to the top of the post. It pays to do this once the gates have been hung and you know everything fits!

Westie fitting gate posts

Tools required –

Hammer drill with masonry bits,
Spanner or Screwdriver (depending on the fixings used),
‘Spade’ drill bit (if using masonry bolts – size wider than head of socket set),
Twist drill bits (size – refer to fixings)
Spirit Level,
Silicone & Gun,

Tools to fit posts to a wall

Frame fixings or masonry screws/bolts for fixing the gate posts?

In the video above I’ve used masonry bolts (a screw headed version is available but I find personally you can get the hex head/bolt version tighter, giving a better more secure fix.). Another option to fix the wooden gate posts to the wall is frame fixings (a larger version of a rawl plug and screw if you like, often used for fixing door and window frames, hence the name frame fixings).

If you do use frame fixings (shown as B in the picture) then the method of fitting is much the same as what is mentioned above. However when drilling and fitting you must drill all the holes into the brickwork (pre-drill the timber gate posts as before) and place the plugs or sleeves (remove the screws first!) into the hole (in the brick/stone work) before re-positioning the gate post and then drilling the fixings into the plug/sleeves.

Fixings for wooden gate posts

Masonry screws/bolts (Shown as A, above) for want of a better description are similar to self tapping screws (for metal work), you drill a hole for the main shaft of the bolts/screws and then as you tighten the fixings they cut their own thread into the brick/stonework as they go in.

You’ve not mentioned screws and rawlplugs?

I’ve not made any mention of using screws and rawlplugs for fixing the wooden gate posts, I’d tend to avoid these as you can get a much better and stronger fixing with either the masonry bolts/screws or frame fixings – both of these are more suited for the fixing of the posts as they are a more heavy duty fixing.

or move onto How to sink gate posts into the ground