How to Wire Electric Gates

Updated April 17, 2017

The electric fence is used primarily by farmers and ranchers who are looking for a way to keep their herds and live stock inside a fenced area. If a person touches the electric fence they'll be electrocuted. The way to avoid this is to install a gate that can be opened without risk of electric shock. When you purchase an electric fence, most companies will provide you with the supplies you need to wire your own electric gate.

Install the electric fence as you regularly would, and according to manufacturer's instructions. When you reach the gate posts, cut the electric wire on either side in order to leave the gate area open.

Turn off and unplug your fence energizer if you have not already done so.

Mount a post activator for each electric wire. For instance, if you have two wires that run around the fence, you will have four post activators (two on each side of the gate). Wooden gate posts require screw-in activators, steel gate posts require clip-on activators.

Connect a piece of insulated cable with each piece of electrical wire, then connect the other end of this insulated cable to the closest post activator. For example, if you're working on the left side of the gate, use a piece of insulated cable to bridge the gap between the electrical wire and the left post activator. To do this, strip each end of the insulated cable and wrap one end around the electrical wire. Wrap the other exposed end of the insulated wire around the post-activator's exposed metal. Do the same on the right side.

Section off a piece of electrical wire that is the same length as the gate. Wrap the end of the electrical wire around the gate post activator that is furthest away from your electrical fence's energizer. This will end become your hinge post.

Wrap the other section of your gate's electrical wire around the metal hook you can find on the back of the plastic gate handle. Hook the front clasp on the plastic gate handle to the metal loop on your gate post activator.

Repeat steps five and six for each piece of electrical wire in your fence. If you have an electrical fence comprised of four pieces of electrical wire, repeat Steps 5 and 6 four times. After this, your electric gate will be finished.


Your cable should be able to withstand 20,000 volts.


Make sure all current to the fence is shut off before beginning this project.

Things You'll Need

  • Electric fence wire
  • Insulated cable
  • Wire cutters
  • Insulated electric fence handles
  • Electric fence post activators
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About the Author

Alex Zang has been freelance writing since 2004, specializing in sports and technology. His work has appeared in "The Calgary Herald" and "Western Canadian Condos & Resorts," as well as online. Zang studied film production and screenwriting at Mount Royal College.