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Installed my first vinyl fence over the weekend. I've done a few pressure treated & cedar fences, but this is my first vinyl. Anyway, got all the posts & panels in, looks great, HUGE improvement over the rusted chain link. Nice & straight, flows with the terrain good, etc. Go to install the gate yesterday. The weight of the gate basically flexes the gate post over slightly, which I corrected while the gate is closed, but the problem is when the gate is opened the post still leans in the direction of the gate causing the gate to drag when almost at a 90 to the fence. HO says no problem I can just lift it up to open it the rest of the way. However, this is not OK with me. I need to reinforce that post somehow so it doesn't lean. That's poor quality & poor design by the manufacturers part IMO. Just to clarify, the post is flexing above grade. They are set in 12" footings 30" deep.

It's the fence design where the top & bottom rails slip into holes in the posts & lock into place with the retaining ears ont he ends of the rails, no brackets. So slipping a 4x4 post in there is out of the question. I was thinking of dropping a couple #3 or #4 rebar down in there & filling the entire vinyl post with high strength concrete. Any thoughts on this or other ideas?

Job went great until the gate from hell. 3 hours dicking with one gate!:mad:

Thanks,
Dan
 

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All the vinyl fences I have worked with either have a special gate post or allow the insertion of a 4x4 inside to eliminate flexing posts where necessary. I would look into that option and maybe remove the post and insert a 4x4.

Curt

I just finished reading your whole post about the 4x4 thing. Check with your supplier about a Gate post. Maybe you can fill the post with concrete if they dont have one..
 

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I usually get an aluminum gate post stiffener that is designed to work with that type of fence. I know Master Halco and merchants metals carry them. I have also used the rebar and concrete routine also. I just find the stiffener is faster and neater.
 

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I never liked the idea of putting a wooden post inside a vinyl one. Not even thinking about the captured air twisting and bowing it.

I always concreted inside the post itself. OF course, you need to duct tape the rail ends closed, and keep watering the run off 'crete water for a while. Block the gate up over night to keep it set where you want it.

Please note, I have almost always done this with heavy walled gate posts, twice as thick as normal posts. One company I talked to said whenever they tried ton concrete inside the post, it would split. The few thin posts I did I never went back to check, but never got a call back either. I also stopped using the rebar and never noticed a difference.

One other note. When doing this before the gate is hung, make sure you screw your hardware into the post before the concrete is put it(and hardened). You'll only forget once!

Also the heavy walled gate posts alone don't seem to hold the weight properly.
 

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Gate Post Stiffener

Without a doubt, the best option is to use the gate post stiffener which should be offered by the manufacturer of the vinyl or PVC product you purchased. The cost may be more than filling with concrete but I can almost guarantee you if your product was bought from a reputable manufacturer of vinyl products then they will recommend you use the stiffener. They are usually made from aluminum (I use CertainTeed Vinyl Products) and are well worth the extra money to keep your gate from sagging.
 

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Dan ...not sure what part of Indiana but VBD Inc. has dealers all over the state and has an aluminum insert for gate posts that works great
 
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