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5 essential care tips for your beachside wrought iron gates

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Living near the beach offers serene views and refreshing breezes, especially in the summer weather. But as enjoyable as it can be on a personal level, living close to the sea or beach often means that your wrought iron gates or railings will require a little more TLC. That’s largely due to the combination of salt in the air and sand, which can accelerate wear and tear on metal surfaces, requiring specific care and maintenance practices to keep your gates looking beautiful and functioning smoothly for years to come.

We have a wealth of in-house experience with wrought iron railings and gates here at SL Wrought Iron, so it’s a situation we’re familiar with – here are a couple of useful things to consider!

Apply a marine-grade protective coating

One of the most effective ways to protect your beachside wrought iron gates is to apply a marine-grade protective coating. This specialised coating is designed to withstand the harsh conditions near the coast, including salt spray and moisture. Before applying the coating though, start by ensuring that the surface of the gate is clean and dry to achieve the best results. Happily, it’s not a particularly intensive job – a fresh coat of marine-grade protective coating every 1-2 years can significantly extend the lifespan of your gates and maintain their appearance.

Clean off salt and sand regularly

Salt and sand can accumulate on the surface of wrought iron gates, leading to corrosion and deterioration over time. Regular cleaning is essential to remove these contaminants and prevent them from causing damage. Use a soft brush or cloth with mild soap and water to gently scrub the gates, paying attention to intricate details and crevices where salt and sand can hide. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and dry with a soft towel to prevent water spots. It’s also helpful to use a hose with a gentle spray to reach into harder-to-access areas and ensure all salt and sand residues are removed effectively.

Inspect for corrosion frequently

Frequent inspections are crucial for identifying early signs of corrosion on your wrought iron gates. It’s a good plan to start by looking for areas where paint may be chipped or worn away, as these spots are more susceptible to rust formation. If you notice any signs of corrosion, don’t wait too long, as it can spread surprisingly quickly. Sand the affected area lightly, apply a rust converter if necessary, and repaint with a matching paint colour to protect the metal from further damage. You’ll also want to inspect the underside and hinges of the gate where moisture and salt can accumulate unnoticed.

Address rust spots immediately

Rust spots may occasionally appear on your beachside wrought iron gates – to be honest, it’s hard to keep them away entirely. But while preventing them forming them entirely may not always be realistically possible, at least it’s not tricky to deal with them! Start by using a wire brush or sandpaper to remove the rust, then clean the area thoroughly with a mild detergent and water. Then, apply a rust inhibitor or primer designed for metal surfaces before touching up with matching paint to restore the gate’s protective barrier. Don’t forget to pay close attention to weld joints and other areas where moisture can penetrate and accelerate rust formation.

Lubricate moving parts to prevent salt buildup

If your wrought iron gate has hinges or other moving parts, regular lubrication is essential to prevent salt buildup and corrosion. Use a silicone-based lubricant or a specific product recommended for outdoor metal mechanisms. Apply the lubricant to hinges, locks, and any other moving parts according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This will help maintain smooth operation and extend the lifespan of these components in the coastal environment.

Those are a couple of our top tips, but it’s by no means an exhaustive list! The best thing to do is make your own individual maintenance schedule for your gates, making a couple of checks once every few months or so (it probably won’t need to be much more intensive than that). With the right level of care and attention, your wrought iron railings or gates can last a lifetime.

And of course, if you’re ever looking for any replacements – or even a brand new one of your own – you’re in exactly the right place. Here, you can take your pick from our extensive ranges, to suit all styles and settings – from Barnoldswick to Ribchester. Why not take a look around our site, and see what you can find?