You are currently viewing 3 key factors to consider when choosing new metal gates and railings

3 key factors to consider when choosing new metal gates and railings

  • Post category:General

Choosing new wrought iron gates and railings for your property isn’t always the most straightforward decision, especially if it’s your first time buying them. There are so many choices available that it can be difficult to narrow down your options – and with more than 30 years of experience, we know that better than anyone here at SL Wrought Iron. So to make life easier for you, we’ve distilled the majority of the key decisions involved into three overarching priorities – helping inform your choices, and ensuring that you end up choosing the metal gates and railings that are perfect for you.

The purpose or function of your metal gates or railings

The question that’s probably best to ask first is: what are you actually going to be using your new metal gates and railings for? It might seem like a deceptively simple question, but it’s often easy to underestimate how many different purposes that gates and railings can fulfil.

For example, are you planning to use them to:

  • Mark the boundary of your property?
  • Stop people from loitering or trespassing on your property, such as sitting on your wall, or taking short cuts across your land?
  • Serve as a safety barrier to guard against the potential of falls or other risks of harm?
  • Serve as a purely decorative feature?

The main reason why it’s good to ask this question first is because it can end up informing the answers to subsequent decisions. It may help to determine the size of the gate or railing you’d like for example, and may affect the style you’d like too. E.g. if it’s purely decorative, you might like something minimalist and inviting, whereas if it’s serving as a barrier to ward people off a certain area, you might go for something a bit more physically imposing.

(If you’re not sure of the answer yet or you find yourself struggling to make a firm decision, our experts can always help you take the first steps here at SL Wrought Iron!)

The style and appearance of your metal gates or railings

The style of the railings is obviously a major choice, since it doesn’t just affect the gates or railings themselves – it also has a decisive influence on the overall appearance and ‘feel’ of the immediate area. And of course, when it comes to style, there’s a huge number of possible options to choose from, so sometimes it can be hard to know where to start.

One good approach is to start thinking about how they’ll fit in stylistically with the rest of your property. What sort of impression are you trying to project on to onlookers or visitors? Are you looking for something elegant and luxurious, or minimalist and understated? Grand and imposing, or a quiet rural charm? You don’t have to make any major decisions immediately – even just narrowing down your options can help you edge closer to perfecting your final vision, and ultimately helping you to find the gate or railing to match.

The finish (or protective coating)

Possibly last and certainly not least, you’ll need to consider what sort of finish or protective coating you’d like for your metal gates or railings. Various different suppliers offer their own choices of finishes, but as we say, we like to keep it simple and straightforward for you here at SL Wrought Iron, so we offer two main options: galvanised and powder coated, or primed only.

Here’s a quick explainer of the key differences between each one!

Galvanised and powder-coated

This is the standard finish we offer at SL Wrought Iron, and the one that provides the greatest longevity and protection for your metal gates or railings. Essentially, galvanising is a process that involves immersing the product in a bath of molten zinc at temperatures of about 450C. (That’s hot enough to be able to make a block of wood spontaneously combust, in case you’re wondering.) That gives the gate or railing the very best protection against corrosion.

After it’s been galvanised, it’s then sprayed with paint in a powder form – hence the term ‘powder coated’ – which gives it a superior finish. Once that’s done, it won’t need regular repainting, and in fact only needs minimal maintenance to stay looking its best for decades on end.

Primed only

This is a less common choice for many of our customers, but still one that many do consider. For this finish, the metal gates or railings aren’t galvanised, but instead covered with a layer of primer, so that you can paint them at home in a colour of your choice. They will need touching up or completely repainting regularly – likely at least once every few years or so, if not more frequently.

This makes it a potentially fulfilling project to have in your back pocket if you enjoy keeping yourself busy with some DIY every so often on weekend afternoons. However, if you’d prefer to install your gates and then simply leave them to do their job, we’d generally recommend going for the galvanised and powder-coated option.

That’s all the essentials covered! If you’ve got any additional questions or need any in-depth guidance though, we’re always happy to help here at SL Wrought Iron. We have more than three decades of experience behind us, and all of our products are handcrafted by talented experts right here in our Lancashire factory. You can choose from our beautiful ranges right here on our website, and we can even make bespoke products according to individual customer specifications!

Feel free to have a look around – or don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01254 236994, and we’ll be happy to see how we can help.