Need ideas for a gate to control water
I need some creative ideas on how to build a double swing gate. It will need to hold water back out of a driveway while still being able to swing inward. The homeowners are only there part-time and want some peace of mind.
This summer, we had a lot of rain, and their entire front yard got flooded with mud up to and including half of their garage. So the plan is to build a low (2′) rock wall around the front and side of the corner lot with a double inswing gate for the driveway, also about 2′ tall. There will be a slot drain in front of the gate to catch some water, along with one at the bottom end of the driveway at the house, with drainage swales to carry the runoff to the existing drainage easements at the back of the property.
Now these are a little older people, so the gates need to be easily operable and not too heavy. Not a lot of weight loading and they don’t have to be a complete seal, just enough to keep it from flooding down their driveway again. I am thinking there needs to be a crossbar, something like on an old castle door, and maybe some vertical sliders that will lock into holes in the concrete apron to help resist force of water. We may even end up with a slot in the concrete with clips on the gates to hole a piece of plywood against the gate.
See pics. Any ideas?
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IMO you are trying to create a dam that can be moved out of the way when not needed. Don't think I have ever heard of that. Maybe some of the guys in the nortwest can help you out, or someone from huricane areas.
My first thought would be to fashion a slight "lip" in the driveway and then have the gate close against that but you said that you wanted it to be able to swing in. That might not be all that easy or desirable. I think that I would set the gate back from the end of the driveway about a car length and a half, so that the car would not have to be left in the road while the gate was being operated and there would still be room for the gate swing and then I'd go with an outswing. The only other thought would be some sort of rolling or sliding gate that would ride in a channel or groove in the drive. Water exerts one heck of a lot of force (especially when its full of mud!) and I'd be afraid that without any sort of a strong support mechanism, it will simply get pushed out of the way or at least moved enough that the water would just drive around it.
As I think about it more, a sliding or rolling gate might be the best because it would still work even if mud built up against the outside of it. I'm just not sure how yould make it watertight enough. A heavy brush or rubber sweep maybe?
Hi Bill,I had considered a roller, but am concerned about the weight as the clients age. Might be easier to have a rubber flap on it though that would drag on the front side of the gate as a seal... Then some vertical support bars that would slide down into pockets to resist the water's force. I guess we could do a hydrologic analysis to estimate the amount of water, but that would be a lot of work for a simple gate. Like I said, it needs to be affordable! Thanks.Nick Andrews"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
It seems to me that the owners are concerned about letting water in, but what about getting rid of it once it gets in?
If you put a 19 " berm/wall/whatever, and you have 20" runoff, your screwed.
I think Andy has said it best. Get the water away from the property with drainage chanels/cattle guards before it gets too close.
First I would be addressing the issue of why the house(s) are lower than the roads (DUHHH!)
Is that a palo verde tree in the pic? Thought you must be in AZ.
Depending on where you are you may need to do some checking before you build anything. My understanding is that you are not supposed to change how storm water enters or leaves the property.
How about a low, wide berm that the owners could just drive up and over? Probably be less expensive that a gate and more reliable, too.
"Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd."
I think that is a desert willow tree. Palo Verde trees do grow around here, though. We are in Las Cruces, NM. Actually, this water is coming onto their property. As long as we direct it to the drainage easements it will be okay. With all the rain this year, flooding has been a major concern of late. A lot of the areas in this neighborhood could have used better drainage design, to be sure! But I will not comment on other engineers specifically...that would be wrong.Nick Andrews"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
My opinion, build a "water bar" like a speed bump in the driveway to divert the water to drainage on either side and skip the gate.
"it needs to be affordable! "You want to stop and divert tons of water and mud, but do it lightweight, and no waffordable too?The impossible always costs more money.do they just want you to do a apssable attempt at this or do they want you to gaurantee that it wioll work?
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Well, I think they want something that will work. We aren't talking about six feet of water and mud here. The clients don't feel safe with just a hump in driveway, as was suggested before and we had considered. They just called and the width is 17.5' and we are looking at about 2' high.By affordable I mean we can't use those floating popup walls like commercial properties have. But something a local fabricator can build is feasible, I think. I like the rolling gate better than the swing gate idea.Besdies, with engineering and enough concrete and steel, nothing is impossible. Although it might not be affordable!Nick Andrews"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
I used to irrigate in the Imperial Valley. I just got one thing to say.
2' Of fast moving water and mud. Filled with debris. Cheap lite gate.
Well two things.
Berm. Big berm.SamT
Now if I could just remember that I am a businessman with a hammer and not a craftsman with a business....."anonymous". . .segundo <!----><!---->
They just called and the width is 17.5' and we are looking at about 2' high.
Yeah, a 30" "hump" is just not going to "look" like a barrier.
Sure does seem to me, though, that a "hump" is going to be easier to run a front-end loader over to clear mud/debris/etc. from than a moving structure.
I suspect that there may be two things here, too. They want a gate for security, they also want to not have a flooded yard. What that suggests to me is an entry drive that is gated, with a flood control hump/wall/swale what have you a car-length separated from the security gate.
My vote would be for gate, then flood control. Why? Logically, you gate to the property line, and control the water where you are allowed to. Secondly, a flood comes, it can carry off the gate, but the property does not flood--the debris will give security in that case, like as not.
Now, if gate as floodgate must be entertained, consider a rolling gate--but the other way. That is, one that rolls from flat to upright to be closed. With a bit of counter-balancing, this could then even be powered up, which allows for some fail safing (no power = closed gate).
Just 2¢ from some one who has seen the water come in a roaring, evil, brown, ravaging beast on a otherwise dry day.Occupational hazard of my occupation not being around (sorry Bubba)
"Now, if gate as floodgate must be entertained, consider a rolling gate--but the other way. That is, one that rolls from flat to upright to be closed. With a bit of counter-balancing, this could then even be powered up, which allows for some fail safing (no power = closed gate)."I read that as a drawbridge, which is what came to mind when the thread started. The drawbridge covering a dry moat (ditch) that's lined with rock to simulate a dry stream bed until it actually becomes one and lets the flood flow to where it's allowed. At least then you have some contouring to control the flooding and the drawbridge is there if it gets real bad.The drawbridge itself should be welded out of steel, galvanized, and then powder coated for looks. Don't make it from aluminum unless your prepared to come home one day and find it stolen. If you want it to look like it was made of timbers have it welded of rectangular steel tube. The raising/lowering could be done with electric motors or electric powered hydraulics. Maybe adapted from the ramps that connect the loading docks to tractor trailers that the forklifts roll over.Will definitely add to the security of the property.
Forget the gate and just build a hump in the drive adjacent to the curb. It's cheap, easy and never needs maintenance. From the pics it looks as though you should consider a built up berm of some sort on the right side of the house also, directing water in back of or around to the front of the house.
FEMA.gov has some excellent books and plans for free on flood control for homeowners whih some good ideas on how to do so. The other publications have always been great also.
Can you do some regrading of the property to control the direction of water.
I spent alot of time and effort floodproofing a home we used to live in. When the water flows an inch over a 4 foot 400 foot long berm, it won't make a difference. It's hard to control mother nature.
Your project does not look hard to do without the gates.
The problem is that the house sits lower than the street, so regrading the yard won't solve the problem of teh driveway becoming a sluiceway.Nick Andrews"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
Is there a drainage runoff ditch running the roadside front of the property?
If so I would put a cattle barrier across the driveway in line with the ditch.This way the water would run into the ditch instead of going down the driveway and you can wash out the mud if need be.
ANDYSZ2WHY DO I HAVE TO EXPLAIN TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY THAT BEING A SOLE PROPRIETOR IS A REAL JOB?
Around here, that should be an obvious answer to use two lengthwise. This is in a so-called 'upscale' area of town (read: people who got ripped off for the lots AND houses!) so I don't think they will go for anything that large. They are against the berm for aesthetic reasons, ironically!And they should never get that much water again. The county is doing a project that will cut off a vast portion of the runoff that caused this much flooding.Nick Andrews"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
What keeps the gate from being encased in mud so the clients can't move it?
If the gate stops the mud, the mud will end up at/under/around the gate.
Yeah, my thoughts exactly. Seems like a gate will work once, then will be permanently immobilized by the ton of silt and clay that has settled around it. I'd put my money into a proper drainage system that sheds the water away from critical areas. A superior system will also include some means to filter out the fines before they plug up the drains or tiles.
Properly designed landscape berms are the easiest most cost effective way to solve the problem. Integrate them into the landscaping and it will actually improve the visuals of the house.
As to them not trusting a berm: A 2-foot berm, will hold back just as much water as any other 2-foot high structure, be it a wall or gate. And, it has two added benefits: no moving parts to break; and there is no way anyone can forget to close it.