A wood fence is a great way to create a safe, relaxing, and secluded environment on your property. In fact, wood is among the most popular choices for residential and commercial fencing materials. This is because wood fences not only look great, but they are cost-effective. Unfortunately, wood is not a material that will last forever, even with proper maintenance. If you start to notice issues in your fence that are cause for concern, follow the guidelines below to help you determine if your fence needs repairs or if it should be replaced. Or, if you are in the Richmond, VA, Norfolk, VA, or Dunn, NC, areas, you can contact us at Hurricane Fence Inc. to request an estimate.
The Lifespan of a Wooden Fence
As a natural material, wood is prone to damage from regular wear and tear. Over time, the sun, wind, rain, and snow can all cause damage to your wood fence. By properly maintaining your wood fence, you can increase its longevity but eventually, it will start to degrade.
The type of wood your fence is made from will help determine the lifespan of your wood fence. A lower-grade wood fence might last between 4-7 years, whereas a top-quality wood can last for over 20 years. Of course, the installer is just as important as the quality of the material. Make sure to choose a fence company with plenty of experience, good reviews, and responsive customer service.
What to Look for When Deciding Between a Wood Fence Repair vs. Replacement
Whether you’ve noticed something that made you question the integrity of your fence, or you are just being proactive, here is a list of things to look out for when inspecting your wood fence.
- Cracks and holes – After a while, wood can crack or develop holes from weather or what have you. Typically, these can be easily repaired with a wood filler or putty. Then the repairs will need to be stained or painted to match the fence.
- Discoloration – If you have an unstained, unpainted wood fence and you start to notice discoloration, that is an early sign of degradation. The impacted pickets, or even the entire panel, will need to be replaced eventually.
- Rot – Wood is subject to rot, especially at the base of the posts on properties in wet climates without proper drainage.
- Warp – Warped boards are another sign to look for.
- Insect damage – Lastly, look for any signs of insect damage, especially wood-destroying insects like termites.
Once you’ve thoroughly inspected your fence, take inventory of how many boards and posts you’ve identified as worn or damaged. This will help you determine whether a repair or a replacement will be best for you.
The 20% Rule
A good rule to live by in the world of fence repairs is the 20% rule: if more than 20% of your fence is damaged, worn, or discolored, then a fence replacement will likely be the more economical option.
While repairs seem like the more affordable route to take, those costs can add up depending on how much of your fence is damaged. Not to mention the repairs are only a temporary fix when the fence needs to be replaced in the future anyway.
Learn More About Your Wood Fence
If you are still wondering if you should repair or replace your wood fence, or if you have any other questions about fencing, please contact us at Hurricane Fence today!