A wheel installed on a gate provides mobile support, which is particularly important on a heavy gate. The wheel removes the stress of the weight from the gate, the hinges and the gate post, enhancing the gate's durability. Gate-wheel kits typically include a pivoting or fixed-position wheel that is attached to a base plate or flange, and installation screws. The flange or base plate is typically screwed to the stile (vertical member) of the gate frame. Installation may be completed in minutes.
Open the gate. Place a carpenter's level on a rail of the gate frame. If the gate is level, proceed with installation of the gate wheel. If the gate has begun to sag, place pieces of scrap lumber between the bottom of the gate and the ground to raise the gate until it is level. You may have to place shims between the lumber and the gate. Once the gate is level, proceed with installation of the gate wheel.
Place the flange of the gate-wheel assembly against the stile of the gate frame with the wheel touching the ground. Use a pencil to transfer the positions of the screw holes in the flange to the gate frame. Remove the wheel. Use a drill and driving bit (slightly smaller in diameter than the threaded shanks of the screws or bolts in the kit) to drill a pilot hole through each screw-hole mark.
Reposition the gate-wheel flange on the gate frame, aligning the screw holes with the pilot holes. Depending on the type of hardware included in the kit, attach the gate-wheel assembly to the gate, using either a drill and driving bit or a socket wrench. Remove the scrap lumber and shims.
Gate wheels come in a great variety of sizes and styles. Some have wheels that are attached to the flange on a spring for gates installed over uneven terrain. Adjustable gate wheels are installed first, then raised or lowered to level the gate. Gate wheels are also available for chain-link gates. Depending on the configuration of the gate-wheel assembly, some gate wheels are mounted to the bottom rail of the gate, instead of to the stile.