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Many customers wonder whether they should buy a single or a double gate? There are several factors to consider, first among them, the width of your space. If the space you are considering for your baby gate is larger than 40 inches you might want to consider double doors. Look at your space and imagine where a 40 inch door would open. To simulate this, you can use a piece of string. Either secure it where the hinges would be or have a helper hold it. Cut the string the length of your opening. Will you hit the opposite wall? Is there a wall long enough for you to fold against if it is opened? Will you block a door or hallway when it is opened?
We also offer sliding gates in most of our gate styles. The big consideration here is whether you have a wall adjacent to your opening that is as long or longer than your opening. This is where your gate is stored when it is opened.
There are also structural issues. A forty inch gate made out of solid oak weighs about 50 pounds. The door is at a 180 degree angle to the jamb, in its closed position the force exerted on the top screw securing the gate is at it's maximum. If you were to calculate the force, your top bolt has to hold about 190 lbs. If you open the door 90 degrees you have all kinds of other forces at play. We supply 3 bolts rated at about 265 pounds but if you add in a 40 pound toddler hanging on the end you can see where things are going. If you make the gate half as wide you reduce the force by a factor of 4. Like Archimedes said," If you had a long enough lever you could move the world."
If you mount the gate into a stud with a 3 inch wood screw, you've just upped your pull out force to over 500 lbs. Multiply that times 3 and you can safely have a baby elephant hang on your gate. Not many of your cheap gates come even close to giving you the stability of our baby gates, whether you decide on a single or double.
Why am I focusing on the bolts? These are the weak links in any construction. That is why towel bars start giving out, your pictures fall off of the wall, or that fireplace mantel just won't stay straight.
Our standard mortised butt hinges are secured with six screws each. Your wall will probably collapse before the hinges give out. In addition to our standard hinges we offer European lift off hinges, double action spring door hinges (pivot hinges), and spring hinges.
The European drill in/lift off hinges let you remove your doors when you need to just by loosening two hex nuts. They are rated 150 pounds per hinge and can more than handle any of our gates. The beauty of these hinges, besides the ease of removal, is that you can adjust the horizontal and lateral distance of your gate compensating for any newel or wall being out of plumb. This is especially nice for saloon doors since it lets you make the gap exactly parallel. This is great even if you don't have OCD.
Double action spring door hinges, now that sounds fancy. For those of you old enough to have watched "Gunsmoke", do you remember Miss Kitty? If yes, you'll probably also remember the saloon doors that swing both ways. That's what double action spring door hinges do. The one drawback is that due to the mechanics involved and their design, they can not handle a very heavy load, only about 30 pounds a set. This makes them good for saloon doors, but not so good for heavier single doors.
Spring hinges are just like our standard hinges but they have a spring built in which lets your door close automatically. Depending on the size of the gate, these are combined with standard hinges to carry the load.
We purchase our standard latch from Costal Bronze Hardware in an effort to buy American made. The standard gate latch is a surface bolt attached on the opposite of the opening side of the gate. It slides into a latch plate on the jamb. If it is for your fur baby, we can also mount it on the opening side with a surface catch.
For our gates that are solid at the top, this latch is not a problem. Your toddler would have to reach over our 33 inch high gate and undo the latch which is a difficult task for a toddler.
Many of our customers order gates with the top parts of the gate or the entire gate made with balusters or slats. Once your toddler is mobile enough to stand up, there may be the possibility that he or she can reach up and undo the latch. To make sure this doesn't happen we offer modified door reinforcement locks that are child proof and withstand up to 800 lbs of pressure. These locks fit our single gates and are available as a separate item in our store. Unfortunately, because of the way they work, they don't fit double door gates.
Our double door gates come with heavy duty flip latches. Again, depending on the size and dexterity of your toddler, they may be able to open the gate.
As an extra precaution, you could add a swing bar door lock, which most of you will be familiar with from motel doors, or a standard gate latch that you're able to put a lock in. We can use the standard gate latch on your single door gate at your request. They're not the correct type of latches for double doors but can be added to the back in order to use a lock for extra security if necessary. Both of these are readily available at Lowes and Home Depot and can be added to the back of the gate after it has been installed.
We try our best to make sure your child or pet stays safe. So please look at all of your options before you order and we'll do our best to get you what you need.