Like their owners, fences weather and age over time. And while we don’t have to stay outside 24/7, our fences do. Therefore, they are subject to rain, snow, wind, sun and soil shifts. If you are trying to decide whether to repair or replace your fence take the following factors into consideration:
- How old is your fence? If your fence is over five years old, you should do a quick inspection every six months or so. Tug on the panels and posts to see how well they hold up. Do they lean or shift?
- Are any boards warping or splintering? If so, mark these boards with a red sharpie to note their need for repair.
- Are the bottom of your fence panels beginning to rot from insects or moisture? A little deterioration is acceptable; a lot of deterioration is not.
- Are your panels pulling away from the posts? As wood begins to deteriorate, the nails loosen within the board or post causing the panel to lean and eventually fall.
- Are the posts beginning to rot or loosen within the ground? This is a good indication your posts may need to be replaced or reset. If the post is salvageable, then you can reset it, but it needs to be in excellent condition. If it shows any splintering, then just replace it. You might also consider a steel post option instead of traditional wood.
In evaluating your fence, take a good look at the structure as, a whole. If more than 25% of the fence needs to be repaired, then it’s a good idea to go for an entire replacement. Fences do have lifespans, and if your fence is quite old, it might be it’s time to go.
If the posts are healthy and still have solid footing, then you can just replace the panels. This is a less expensive option. But remember, the posts are the supports for your fence, so if they are deteriorating, you can bet the panels are too. Time to replace instead of repair. If you determine your fence only has a few weak spots, then call in a reputable fence company to make the repairs and further the life expectancy of your fence.
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