Having a secure and well-built fence is essential for any home, but even with the best maintenance, common problems can arise. Whether it be rotted posts or loose pickets – if left unchecked, these issues can cause your security to deteriorate.
To help you identify and protect against these threats, we’ve put together this comprehensive guide on how to deal with the most common fence problems of 2023.
With detailed instructions and step-by-step guides, this blog post will show you how to maintain and perform necessary repairs to your fencing system and common fence problems effectively, no matter what life throws at it.
Take away key points:
- Regular maintenance and inspection of the new fence, gates, and posts are crucial to preventing common fence problems.
- Keeping the area around the fence clear of debris, sealing or treating wood fences, and promptly addressing any signs of damage can prolong the lifespan of your fence and save you time and money.
- Improper installation can often cause a sagging fence or leaning fences.
- If you install a fence on sloped ground or unstable ground, make sure your contractor sets new post with proper support for the stepped design.
Table of Contents
- Leaning fence
- Broken, rotted, or damaged boards
- Fence gate problems
- Termite damage
- Holes in fence posts
- Final words
Leaning fences and sagging fence are among the common problems that many homeowners encounter. This occurs when the fence starts to tilt to one side or begins to show signs of weakening. While all types of fences can develop this issue, it’s more frequently observed in wood fence and vinyl fences.
A wood fence may develop a slight lean over time due to weather exposure and rotting posts. On the other hand, vinyl fences may get impacted and show signs of a slant due to high winds or in extreme cases, during a car accident. Additionally, a wood fence or vinyl fences on a slope may have a natural lean as well, which can be corrected or prevented.
How to solve it?
To correct a leaning fence, start by assessing the cause of the problem. In most cases, the problem results from damaged or weakened fence posts. If this is the case, you can prop the fence back into position and secure it with braces to straighten the fence. In more severe cases, you may need fence replacement at the post or seek help from a professional fencing contractor.
Broken, rotted, or damaged boards
A fence can add beauty and value to your home, but it can also take a beating from harsh weather, insects, and regular wear and tear.
Broken, rotted, or damaged fence boards/missing boards are common fence problems that homeowners encounter on their property, and it’s crucial to address this issue as quickly as possible to extend the life of your fence.
Broken, decayed, or damaged fence boards/missing boards can occur due to various reasons, like harsh weather, water damage, insects, or impact damage. The damage can spread quickly if left unaddressed, leading to more significant problems and even requiring an entire section of the fence replacement.
How to fix it?
To fix a broken or damaged fence board, start by removing the damaged board from the fence rails. If the rail is still in good condition, you can reuse it, which will save you time and money. However, if the rail is also damaged, you may need to replace it and not perform any repairs.
If large sections of the fence are missing, you want to seek out professional help.
Choose a board that matches the fence boards in design, size, and wood kind. Nail or screw the new board in place of the old one. A raised or sunken board looks bad and causes further issues, so make sure the new board is level.
If your fence is old, replacing numerous sections may be cheaper than fixing each board. Our best advice to fix your fence after a storm is to inspect it carefully and call for professional fencing installation.
Fence gate problems
Fences need gates. They enhance your home’s exterior appearance and provide controlled access and departure. Gate problems are prevalent, jeopardizing your safety and privacy.
Fence gate issues may stem from misaligned hinges, corroded locks, or worn cables. With a few tools and some knowledge, most fence gate issues may be addressed quickly.
How to fix it?
First, tighten the hinges on the entire fence gate that doesn’t close or has misaligned hinges. Usually, loose hinges are to blame for sagging gates. To align the gate, tighten the hinge screws using a socket wrench.
Replace rusty or damaged hinges. Replace the hinges using screws and a power drill after removing the old ones with a screwdriver or pry bar.
Check the gate latch next. Replace the latch if it doesn’t work. Silicone spray, or WD-40, helps smooth the latch’s operation.
Finally, check the gate cables. Replace worn cables. Remove and replace cables with cable clamps and cutters.
Termites are pesky insects that can cause significant damage to the wooden fence. If you have wooden fence posts, it’s essential to be aware of the signs of termite and insect damage and take prompt action to prevent the damage from spreading on your property.
Termite insect damage can present itself in various ways, such as holes in the fence post, hollow-sounding wood when tapped, or visible termite mud tubes. If you suspect termite damage, it’s essential to take action promptly.
How to fix it?
Remove termite-damaged timber first. If only a tiny portion of the fence is broken, cut it out and replace it with fresh wood. However, extensive damage may require panel replacement.
Next, termites must be eliminated. Preventing termites from entering your fence is preferable. This involves removing termite-attracting leaves and branches from the entire fence area.
If you reside in a termite-prone region, try treating the fence. Use caution while using termiticides, as some can injure humans and pets.
Holes in fence posts
Holes in fences can be an eyesore, and they’re also a potential safety hazard if they’re not addressed promptly.
There are several reasons why holes can form in fences, such as animal damage, natural wear and tear, or impact damage.
How to fix it?
To fix a hole in a fence post, start by cleaning debris and loose material from around the hole. Next, determine the size of the hole and the type of material used in the fence, like wood or metal, and find a suitable patch material.
For small holes in wood fences, you can use wood putty or wood filler to fill the hole. Once the patch material has dried, you can sand it down to create a smooth surface and paint or stain the section of the fence posts to match the rest of the fence.
What is the problem with wood fences?
Wooden fences are susceptible to rot, decay, warping, missing boards, soil erosion, and termite infestations, insect damage due to exposure to the elements, which requires regular maintenance and treatment.
To properly maintain a wooden fence, make sure you use a pressure washer as a cleaning method, while other fences will require a use of mild soap as well.
What causes a fence to fall over?
Stronger posts, strong winds, soil erosion, impact damage, and improper installation of the fence can all cause a fence to topple over. Still, proper upkeep, fence installation, and support can prevent this.
How long should fence panels last?
The lifespan of entire fence panels depends on the material used, climate, and maintenance efforts. Wooden fence panels typically last between 5 to 12 years, depending on the quality of the wood and how well they are maintained.
Who pays for fence repair between neighbors?
In most cases, the cost of fence repair between neighbors is divided equally. This is because neighborly fences are generally considered shared property lines, and therefore, each neighbor is responsible for the cost of maintaining and repairing it.
While fence upkeep can be tedious at times, taking the time for regular maintenance and inspection is certainly worth it.
Not only can regular maintenance help to extend the lifespan of your fence, but it also ensures that you and your loved ones stay safe within the boundaries of your property lines.
Despite its added cost, investing in a professionally installed, high-quality fence is money well spent, as it can truly act like an investment in the long run.