A vinyl fence can be a great way to beautify your home, add an extra layer of security and privacy, and provide a safe place for children and pets to play. Unlike other types of fencing, vinyl requires very little maintenance, and it is available in a wide variety of classic and contemporary designs. The installation of vinyl fence is similar to other types of fencing, and will require some basic preparatory steps before starting.
Before You Begin
Determine your property’s legal boundaries by consulting your deed and official survey. Make sure to note any easement or right-of-way issues and adjust the placement of the fence accordingly.
Discuss the fence with your neighbors to avoid any difficulties later on, such as disagreements over the exact location of the property line.
Talk to your local building department to determine if a permit is necessary to install your vinyl fence, and to learn what specific codes apply in your situation. Obtain the proper permits before beginning the installation.
Call your local utility companies and have them mark the locations of any buried pipes or cables. If you have a sprinkler system, have a plumber mark the locations of the lines and heads.
Remove any obstructions in the fence’s path, such as plants, bushes or lawn furniture.
Laying Out the Vinyl Fence
Mark the locations of the corner posts and any gate posts with stakes placed at the post’s center. Run a string line between the stakes to indicate the fence line.
Determine the length of your vinyl fence panels and use this measurement to mark the center of each line post that will be between the corner posts.
Lay the posts and fence panels on the ground near the marks and fit the pieces together temporarily to make sure the posts are located correctly and everything else fits properly.
Installing the Vinyl Fence
Using a post hole digger or a power auger, dig each post hole to the manufacturer’s recommended depth, usually about a third of the post’s total height plus 6 inches for gravel, and to a diameter of about 10 inches.
Place 6 inches of gravel in each hole to allow for drainage, tamping it down firmly.
Starting with the corner posts and gate posts, fill each hole with quick-setting concrete to just below grade if you are covering the concrete with grass, or to slightly above grade and sloped away from the post, which will prevent problems from pooling water.
Set the corner and gate posts into the concrete, tapping them down with a rubber mallet or block of wood to the level of the gravel. Make sure the post is plumb and level, and use temporary bracing from the post to the ground, if necessary, to keep it set correctly. Take extra caution setting the gate posts, as any mistakes, such as being slightly out of plumb, will make the installation look sloppy, or, worse, make the gate fit improperly.
Run a string line between the tops of the corner posts, which will act as a guide to setting the line posts.
Set the line posts into the concrete, tapping them down to meet the height of the string line. Make sure each post is plumb and level.
Allow the concrete to fully dry, usually at least one 24 hours.
Mount the rail brackets included by the manufacturer to each fence post according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and then install the fence panels.
Install the gate according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and when installing accessories such as post caps, be sure to use the proper adhesives.
If you decide to install your own vinyl fence, we wish you the best! If this sounds like a little more effort than you have time for, please consider Central Fence. We install residential fences across much of Georgia, and we install commercial fences in five states.