A lot of people attempt to save money by installing their own fence, rather than hiring a professional. Though it is possible to install a strong and attractive fence on your own, a few common mistakes often result in self-installed fences looking less than stellar. If you're going to install your own post-and-rail style fence, here are three primary mistakes to avoid.
Mistake #1: Failing to properly identify the property line.
If you're putting up a fence where there is no fence currently, then you must be careful to properly identify the property line. Don't make the mistake of just assuming the line is where you and your neighbor think it is. You could run into trouble down the road when you try to sell your home, or when the neighbor sells their home, and you find that the fence is in the wrong place. Take a careful look at your deed before marking off the line along which you'll place the fence. If your deed is at all confusing in terms of your property line, hire a professional surveyor to map out the line for you.
Mistake #2: Not anchoring the fence posts in concrete.
If you want your fence to stay standing for more than a few months, you cannot just dig holes and pound in the fence posts. They need to be anchored in concrete and gravel. You'll need to use a post-hole digger to create a hole that's larger around than your fence post. Then, pour 6 inches of gravel into the hole, and fill the hole the rest of the way up with concrete. You may need to use braces to keep the post upright while the concrete dries, and wait 3–4 days before attaching the rails to the fence.
If you have heavier soil, you can set your posts in just gravel. However, this option is less durable than setting them in concrete.
Mistake #3: Not purchasing the proper types of lumber.
Especially for your fence posts, which are submerged in the earth, the type of wood that you use is extremely important. Use pine, untreated oak, or another soft and porous wood, and your fence will be rotting away within a year. For your fence posts, you definitely need to use either cedar (which naturally resists rot) or pressure-treated lumber. If you will be painting the fence, you can use a less-expensive wood for the post rails, since they won't be coming into direct contact with the ground, but cedar and pressure-treated lumber are still the best choices.
Installing a fence the right way is no small feat. If you have doubts about your ability to install a fence, you're probably better off hiring a professional fence company, rather than wasting your time and money only to have a fence that falls apart within a few years.Share
18 August 2015
I've found that one of the perks of being a homeowner is the privacy that your own home provides. However, sometimes there can be a lack of privacy if you are in your yard and it is unfenced. When we bought our home, there was not a fence. One night, after the neighbors dog wandered through our barbecue one time too many, I decided that it was time to look up a fence contractor. We soon found a great price on a fence with a fantastic fence contractor. Now we can keep our privacy while still feeling open towards the neighbors.