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» How to Install a Wood Fence

How Did I Do It? > Home & Garden > How to Install a Wood Fence
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The old saying, good fences make good neighbors tends to be true, particularly if one of you has a pooch that tends to roam, or get into the garden.

Adding a fence to your yard or garden just may save your relationship with them, or save your pets life.

Building your own fence isn’t at all difficult, and with just a few tips you can add your own with minimal issues.

As a general rule of thumb, the fence posts should be about 6 or 8 feet apart, depending of course on the place where you are building as well as the kind and type of fence you pick and the reason you are putting the fence up to begin with.
Set the corner posts first, and then stretch lines from all of the corners and line up the posts in between them.

Drive stakes into the ground about every six feet or wherever you plan to put the post hole.

Measure well and make sure that your positioning of the posts is accurate. The strength of your fencing will be largely determined by the positioning and placement of the fence posts.

Fence posts, particularly wooden ones should be set into the ground with about a quarter of their total length buried under the ground. This tip is extremely important with the corner posts and those that will bear excessive weight and any real pressure from the wind.

Using a post hole digger will help you to get your post holes to the proper depths and assure that they can withstand the weight of the fencing.

When putting in posts, particularly the corner posts, make sure that you make the holes a bit larger at the bottom than they are at the top. Inside each post hole, put a large rock, or several shovels of gravel inside to assure that the drainage is adequate so that wood posts won’t suffer from the moisture.

Use a wood preservative or sealant to treat the parts that will be underground.

The posts can be packed in with concrete to assure that they stay well. When using concrete make sure that your posts are perfectly upright to assure that the other fence rails or fence panels will fit them well and also sit level.

Put a small stake behind the posts until your concrete is dried before removing it.

Each corner post should have bracing, because it will be holding the weight in both directions.

Letting the posts set up, whether they are seated in concrete or only soil, will make your fence sturdier.

The top of your posts should be treated with either caps, rounded off or cut on a slant to keep the water from laying on them. It will help the post to last about twice as long as those which are not treated in that way.

Use levels to make sure that all your posts are sitting level and mound the soil around the posts to prevent water from standing around them.

Attaching the rails

There are three ways that rails are attached to fencing. The best method is usually to nail or screw the top rail on the fence to the top part of the post and to nail the bottom rail to the bottom part of the post.

When you are attaching your fencing, measure from the top rail and then cut a stick that will keep your fencing level all the way around.

There are actually hundreds of types of fencing out there, although many are variations of others.
Chain link and privacy are largely considered barrier fencing, while the split rail is ornamentation and will offer very little in the way of privacy for you or your family.

Take stock of what you need the fence for prior to choosing one.
Know where your property line runs and check with zoning to find out the fencing rules in your area. Most states require that fencing be at least three feet off the property line and that the “good” side be facing your neighbors

TOOL AND MATERIAL CHECKLIST

  • Boards & Posts
  • Post Hole Digger
  • Steel Tape
  • Small Axe or Hatchet
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Level
  • Wood Chisel
  • Wood Preservative
  • Power Saw
  • Paint or Outdoor Stain
  • Marking Pencil
  • Gravel or Sand
  • Hand Saw
  • Work Gloves
  • Ready-Mix Concrete
  • Tamping Rod

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