My gate was binding against the post along the top drip rail. I figured the gate was a little too wide at that spot so I trimmed it a little shorter.

Shorty after the gate started binding at a couple other spots. I presume the "keep trimming the everything until it stops binding" method is not the right way to fix my gate.

How can I adjust the gate so it doesn't strike the post when closing?

gate closed gate post, the bright spots are where it's being struck gate edge gate

  • 1
    Have you tried tightening the diagonal cable in the gate? Shortening the turnbuckle should lift the gate enough to clear the post.
    – mikes
    Commented Nov 28, 2016 at 11:34

2 Answers 2


First, determine why it is binding:

  • Is it because the wood has swollen due to wet weather, pests, etc.?
  • Is it because the posts surrounding the gate have shifted?
  • Has the ground shifted and moved the posts closer together?

My garden gate binds during wet weather. Fortunately, we are much less likely to use the gate then. The posts and gate are set to match perfectly when the wood is dry and that is when we most care about it working well.

If I were to do anything to make "wet closing" easier, I would bevel the striking surfaces so they wouldn't cause a dead stop, but move the posts apart so the gate can be closed with one hand.


"keep trimming the everything until it stops binding"

That's what worked for me. I had to trim in both summer and winter in the first year after construction.

Wooden gates expand and shrink as the seasons change as humidity varies.

The other possibility is that your gate is sagging due to inadequate diagonal bracing or poor construction - you could measure the diagonals to see if they are equal and if they change over time (months). You gate appears to have no conventional diagonal bracing and so, I guess, is more likely to sag and warp.

Adjusting hinges might have an effect but I expect one of the other causes is the important one.

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