When deciding whether or not a fence is fixable, many homeowners start by weighing up the costs of replacing their fence. You will often only need to make minor repairs to your fence to give it a fresh breath of life. Putting down a temporary fence that protects your property from prying eyes is often cheaper and easier than installing a new fence completely. But sometimes, replacing your fence is the better choice, especially if it has started to deteriorate. You may also want to change the look of your fence to be more attractive.
By putting up a wooden fence around your property, you can provide your family with the security they need to protect their property. It can also make your home look more attractive. On the other hand, vinyl and ornamental fences give you a modern look that helps your home look more attractive and add value to your property. Regardless of the material that makes up your fence, you should regularly inspect it to ensure any damage is repaired before it escalates into a bigger problem that could call for a full replacement.
Wood fences are perhaps the most common type of fence in residential areas. They are easy to install and maintain. Wood fences are becoming the symbol of suburban life, and for a good reason. They are usually inexpensive and good-looking and provide plenty of privacy and security. It helps keep children and pets safe and well-behaved, and it can keep unwanted guests and prying eyes away.
However, wood fences are some of the most prone to damage due to normal wear and tear. Over time, wind, sun, and rain will start to cause the wood to rot, and your fence will begin to look bad. How quickly a wood fence starts to rot depends on the type of wood used. If you buy a cheap fence that looks nice, it may last only 4 to 7 years. Pine fences last 5 to 12 years, but a well-maintained wood fence will last longer. Cedar posts and posts are more expensive, but they can last up to 30 years, depending on what you do and what you do. It’s not surprising that a wooden fence made with treated lumber can last for 20 years or more.
People usually notice when a wooden fence starts to crack or has holes. Repairing small cracks and holes in a wood fence is easy, but if you want your entire fence to look good, you’ll need to replace the entire fence. Wood fences often look good even when stained or damaged; however, discoloring the wood is another warning sign that a fence is deteriorating. You’ll need to replace all the wooden pickets or the entire fence.
Posts will wear out more quickly in rainy, humid climates and on houses that don’t have good drainage. Rotting posts or shifting soil causes the wood posts to start to lean, and as a result, your entire fence will probably be damaged. Posts are generally built on a cement foundation, so removing and replacing a damaged post might require you to dig out the entire foundation. If only a couple of posts on your fence are ruined, you can repair the damaged parts by putting some wood putty on them.
Vinyl is your best friend if you want to build a fence but never really maintain it. Vinyl fencing is basically just made of plastic. It is hard and durable and doesn’t need to be painted or stained. Moreover, vinyl is indestructible from water and insects. It requires no regular maintenance, just a once-a-year wash with a power washer or garden hose to clean dirt and grime from the surface.
Most commonly, vinyl fences will become weak from the UV rays that come from bright sunlight, and they will warp due to shifting soil. Vinyl fences don’t rot, so the most common damage you will find is cracked panels. These fences usually come with complete panels, so if you crack a panel, you’ll probably have to remove the damaged panel and replace it.
Ornamental fences can last a very long time if they are properly maintained. But the cost of proper maintenance can be very high. You can keep an ornamental fence from getting damaged by having it inspected every few years for any signs of rust or even bubbling paint. It should be repainted every couple of years or replaced completely. Any bubbling paint or rust on an ornamental fence should be sanded off and repainted to protect the metal from further damage. However, some types of damage will not be fixed by properly maintaining ornamental fences.
One of the most common problems with old fences is that the fence itself is not damaged; it is the ground that causes the damage. Over the years, the ground underneath a fence can become unstable and shift. When the ground beneath the fence shifts, posts can be pulled out of place, putting stress on other parts of the fence. Ornamental fence panels won’t move very much; a small shift in the ground beneath a fence can cause the railing to move and cause damage. Because ornamental fences are typically welded together, repairing a fence that becomes warped is often a laborious process that requires a qualified builder to repair it.
Ornamental fences are also prone to damage from accidents, like when a tree falls on them or a car hits them. When someone tries to force a strong impact on an ornamental fence, it can cause it to become bent or even broken. There is really no way to repair the damage. Any section that is damaged when it becomes bent or twisted should be replaced by a qualified fence company like Central Fence.
How to Decide to Repair or Replace Your Fence
So, what factors determine whether you should repair or replace your fence? The most important factors are cost and its expected lifespan. If repairing a fence is more expensive than replacing it, you should definitely consider replacing it. But even though repairs may be less expensive in the short term, there are times when it is better to replace your fence. If you are nearing the end of your fence’s lifespan, it may not be worth repairing it. You can do a small repair now, but you will need more repairs very soon, and they will cost you more.
When It’s Better to replace Rather than Repair a Fence
Sometimes, it makes sense to replace your fence entirely because the time, effort, and money required to repair it is just too great. If you need to replace more than 20 percent of your fence panels or pickets, it may be time to replace the whole fence. Taking out the post from your old fence will cost you a lot more than just replacing the pickets or installing new ones. Often, these posts are buried in the ground and are stuck in place with cement. If you have several fence posts that need to be replaced, you should really replace the entire fence. Fortunately, if you keep your fence properly maintained, it should last you for about 20 to 50 years, depending on the quality of the material.