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Proper Fence Maintenance Extends the Life of Your Fence

The use of fences is so common in our society that most of the time people don’t even notice them. However, these unobtrusive boundaries are a constant fixture because of the very important roles they play. Homeowners use fences to keep their families and homes safe from intruders and to develop a feeling of privacy and ownership. Businesses use fences to protect their property from damage and theft. Fences are put up to mark off the property of ranchers or public lands. They are used in so many different ways and places that most of us rarely notice them at all. From time to time, however, fences do need some attention. Proper fence maintenance will keep the fence strong and attractive.

The Proper Maintenance of Wood Fences


The first step in properly caring for your wood fence is to keep soil and plants away from the fence. One of the most powerful dangers to your fence is the soil that gathers and creeps up on the posts. It is common for homeowners to add top soil as they cultivate their gardens. Soil may be shifted by growing plants or burrowing animals. When the soil gathers around the posts and foundation of the fence, termites can gain access to the wood of the fence. Mold and decay become a threat to the integrity of the wood. Monitor the base of your fence to keep it free of gathered soil and debris. This applies to rocks and other ornamental features as well.

Your next step is to protect the wood from wind, water, and the other elements of nature. Adjust your sprinklers so that they don’t hit the fence. Apply an oil-based stain with UV inhibitors to the fence at least every three to five years. When your fence faces heavy exposure to moisture, chemicals, or other threats, it may need to be treated more often. If mildew has made a presence on your fence, you will need to scrub off all traces of the mildew and maybe apply a cleaning solution.

The Proper Maintenance of Vinyl Fences


Prevent many of the major threats to your vinyl fence by keeping barbeques and other sources of heat away from the fence. Don’t add screws or other fixtures to the vinyl and resist the urge to hang heavy planters or other ornamental objects from the vinyl as they can weaken the vinyl.

To keep your vinyl fence clean and attractive, you may need to give it attention every three to six months. As with wooden fences, monitor the accumulation of soil and other windblown debris around the base of the fence and clear it away. A good portion of the cleaning of vinyl fences can be done with the water pressure from your water hose. Keep an eye out for staining, scratches, or other damages while you spray the fence down.

When stains do need to be treated, a mild soapy mixture and a soft cloth will usually be enough to remove the stain. Purchase a vinyl cleaning solution at a nearby home improvement store and mix it as directed. Some of these solutions can be applied directly to the fence. You may need to put a little bit of muscle into the scrubbing, but sometimes the stains with wipe off easily with a soft cloth. Rinse any remaining cleanser off of the fence before completely drying the area.

The Proper Maintenance of Metal Fences


Metal fences, such as chain link or ornamental iron fences, are fairly resistant to the threats that face other fencing options. Still, these durable fences will last much longer if they are well-maintained.

Regularly inspect the metal for signs of rust and other damages. A wire brush is the most effective tool for cleaning the fence. Posts and connecting hardware should be given particular attention. From time to time, the use of a household detergent mixed with warm water may be appropriate to remove packed on dirt or stains.

Repair damaged sections before they can further impact the integrity of the fencing. On chain link fences, begin by removing the tie wires and using a fence puller to keep the fence taut. Isolate the damaged lines of the chain link in order to remove them. If a large section of the mesh has been damaged, remove lines at each side of the damage and remove the entire damaged section. Use pliers to weave the new lines or mesh into place and use the fence puller to reattach the fencing to the end posts.

Sometimes chain link fences will come out of alignment. This can be fixed by loosening the hinge pins and repositioning them appropriately.

By providing consistent and appropriate maintenance, you can extend the life expectancy of the fence and enjoy a beautiful fence for many years to come.

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Wood Fences Richmond
Wood Fences Richmond
Custom built wood fences - Richmond, Virginia.
Vinyl Fences Richmond
Vinyl Fences Richmond
Custom built vinyl fences - Richmond, Virginia.
Chain Link Fences Richmond
Chain Link Fences Richmond
Custom built chain link fences - Richmond, Virginia.
Aluminum Fences Richmond
Aluminum Fences Richmond
Custom built aluminum fences - Richmond, Virginia.
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