The lifespan of a fence depends on you. A typical cedar wood fence is built to last 20-25 years, but there are things homeowners can do to extend the life of your fence. For many of our customers, we know that keeping children and pets safe is the main objective.
But many times, full-fence replacement is not a viable option. Finances may be an obstacle at the moment. Or maybe you’re selling your home soon and your fence isn’t in major disrepair, but could still use a little work. Each customer’s situation is different. Here are three options for repairing and prolonging your wood fence.
Broken fence post? Here’s a simple fix to deter further damage
For a falling fence, the first thing that needs to be done is to brace the fence post to limit additional damage. Make sure you have:
- A level
- A hammer
- Screws or large nails
- Two 4-5’ stakes
If the vertical fence post is broken or askew, level the post by pushing it straight into the ground. Then, measure two feet perpendicular from the fencepost and bang a stake into the ground. Nail the opposite end to the post, forming a 45-degree angle. Repeat this on the opposite side of the fence so that the falling down post is bolstered on both sides. The post is now completely braced and should hold up through any storm. This is a temporary fix, but can be made permanent at another time by simply replacing the broken post, which can be done as long as the fence rails are in good shape.
Prolong your fence’s life – keep it looking new nearly 20 years later!
The tools you’ll need:
- A wallpaper pump sprayer (find one at your local hardware store, these are fairly inexpensive – especially considering the cost for a new fence!)
- Oil repellant spray (i.e. Thompson’s WaterSeal for fences)
Fill the pump sprayer with the oil repellant spray. Then spray and brush the sealer onto your fence posts and rails. Pay particular attention to the rails and dowel ends. This helps reduce the risk of rotted rails. This is a great tip for prolonging the life of your wood fence, and will keep it looking new even up to 18 years after installation.
Keep frost heaves in check
New England winters can wreak havoc on your fence. Frost heaves left unchecked or unrepaired may lead to leaning fence posts or gates no longer working properly. Here’s what you should do:
1) Level each fence post after the winter is over and the ground is no longer frozen
2) Tamp the soil around each post with a bar tamp to firm up the foundation
3) Add sand or stone dust around the past, tamp this down as well
4) Repeat numbers 1-3 periodically to keep your fence straight and strong and in working order for years to come.
Don’t hesitate to call us for help
These tips are meant to be easy enough for any of our customers to complete, but we understand other life demands may take precedent. As always, we would be happy to provide you a free estimate on any fence repair or maintenance services. Just call us at 781-599-6531 to schedule an appointment!