Redoing our gate has been on our list of things to do forever but a big problem with just redoing the gate was that the posts that support it were not secure. They would move every time the gate was opened or closed. And after removing them we knew why. They were not cemented in (we were shocked because the original owners loved to cement everything in) and they were starting to rot. So replacing them was a very good idea. This is the process of installing post for a gate and here is what our gate looks like today.
What do you think? Can you not remember what it looked like before? How about I show you.
So this was step one (after redoing the fence itself) to building a gate for our fence. Here is how we installed new posts for our gate. Some links in this post are affiliate link for your convenience, click here to read our full affiliate policy.
Installing Post for a Gate
To start, we removed all the old pickets, rails, and 4×4 posts. Then we dug new holes where the new 4×4 posts would go (we needed three but a normal gate is only 2). We tried to have them in the exact same place as before. We decided we were going to have the new posts cemented in by 2 ft (24 inches underground). So we (Eric!) dug the holes wide enough to fit the 10″ concrete forms and about 26 inches deep.
It was my job to cut the 10″ concrete tube form in half (24 inches). To cut it in half, I measured and marked the tube, then I used a razor blade to cut along the marks.
After cutting the tube in half, we then placed them into the holes. We tried to place the forms directly across from the other (level) and about 1 inch below ground level. Next, we poured a couple of inches of gravel into the tubes (about 3-4 inches). Then we placed the 4×4’s into the tube and onto the gravel. SIDE NOTE: We decided to stain the bottoms of the post with our fence waterproofer before placing them into the tubes.
At this point, we decided to attach the rails of the fence to the post to help make everything level. So while I held the post, Eric attached the rail. SIDE NOTE: We made sure things were level (with a level) before, during, and after the whole process. See how we attached the rails, here. TIP: If you are creating this from scratch, here is a great tutorial on how to line everything up, here!
With our fence, it comes off our garage for a couple of feet then hits a post, turns and goes another foot before hitting the post for the gate. We were redoing these two post plus the other one for the gate, so we wanted to make sure that the two posts for the gate were square (level with the other). To check this we took two scrap boards (with a 2×4 between them) and braced them around the 4×4’s with clamps.
We also braced the 4×4 posts with some scrap 2×4’s on the sides to make sure the post would stay level and not move while the cement formed. See picture below for an example:
Once we finished bracing the post so they were level and did not move. We started to mix our cement (we used a big plastic tub to mix it in… we are cheap!). Please make sure you mix your cement, don’t do the pour into the hole and add water. I have heard that this does not hold up as well over time. So take the extra 10 minutes and mix it! Plus follow the instructions on the bag for the amount of water.
After mixing the cement we then put it into the cement form, I placed it in while Eric had a scrap 1×2 board that he used to compact the cement into the form. We used about a bag and a half per cement form. After filling, we covered ours with tarps to protect it from the rain, then let it sit for 24 hours (it was longer because it would not stop raining).
After the rain stopped for an evening, we took a razor knife to the form and removed it from the cement (we did not know if you could just leave it on, so we removed it, was not hard). Then we filled in the holes around the cement with dirt, making sure to compact it as we went. Once all the holes were filled in with dirt, we removed the bracing (OK we did it before but it would be a good idea to wait!).
That was the process we used to install new posts for our gate. Now we could start on the pergola! Anyone else need to redo their posts for their fence?
Find the other tutorials on How to Rebuild A Cedar Fence:
Re-bracing Fence – PART 1
Installing Cedar Pickets – PART 2
Installing Post for Gate – PART 3 (THIS POST)
Building A Gate Pergola – PART 4
Building Gate – PART 5
Staining Fence – PART 6
Total Cost to Rebuild Fence – PART 7
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