With the correct amount of care and maintenance a high quality fence can last a decade, but some fences aren’t so lucky. The lifespan of your wooden fence relies on how well you look after it and regular upkeep of your fence will make a difference of years. But no matter what a time will come when you can’t patch your old fence back together again and you’re forced to look for a replacement.
Take a look at RTC Fencing’s five signs that your fence is in need of replacement and see if any – or all – apply to you.
A decaying fence will only grow weaker and less attractive over time. Sealants or preservatives don’t last forever and need to be reapplied after a while. Leaving your fence untreated for a long time will make it more susceptible to water infiltration and once that happens rot will set in fast. If it’s a widespread problem over the length of your fence then there’s no point trying to repair individual boards or panels. Replacing the whole thing and starting fresh with a new fence is the best solution.
An older fence will understandably be weaker than it once was, and being the first line of defence against the elements means bearing the brunt of wind and rain damage. It’s not surprising that it will have less structural integrity than it once did and might end up leaning dramatically. Minor leaning might just suggest that the fence posts are in need of adjustment, but if multiple sections of the fence are off-kilter then a realignment won’t do much good. Replacing your fence – perhaps with a stronger species of wood than the last – will re-assert the strong border around your property that you once had.
As time and nature take their toll the screws, nails bolts and fasteners will become loose and even fall out completely. This can be another consequence of water damage where the wood around the fasteners expand and swell and become structurally weaker, loosening the grip any fastener has on the wood. Once this happens along your fence, the fence will be substantially weaker and will barely be held together at all. This could add further strain, especially in the face of wind, and your fence will eventually fall apart. If rot has damaged the areas around the fasteners then there will be no chance to replace individual fastenings, so replacement will be the only way to go.
The life of your wooden fence could be brought to a premature end if it takes repeated damage. Even if you’ve regularly maintained and repaired the fence, there’s not much you can do to stop manmade wear and tear. Kids with footballs can be the bane of your fence’s existence and before you know it entire panels could be dented, split or knocked right through. Animals can also make an impact. A neighbour’s dog – or your own – can make your fence its chew toy, creating many unsightly holes and splits which add up over time. Because of the unpredictability of this kind of damage your fence could have holes and splits all over it, making individual repair jobs not worth the effort when compared to replacing the fence itself.
If your once attractive cherry stained fence has turned an ugly shade of grey then it might be time to replace it. Sun and water are the main culprits of discolouration and are especially effective on wood that has not been stained or preserved. A dry fence discoloured by sunlight will be more likely to fracture and split so getting a new fence and making sure it’s treated properly over its lifespan will prevent this from reoccurring.
A note here about fencing regulations if you’re worried about the rules behind fence repair and replacement: if it’s a neighbour’s fence that is badly damaged but you’re the only one who seems concerned, there isn’t much you can do besides ask them to repair or replace the fence. Even if they refuse you can’t force them or go off and replace it on your own. You can erect your own fence directly next to your neighbour’s, however, but a neighbour’s fence is your neighbour’s responsibility. Anything you do to your neighbour’s fence without permission – including: painting, staining or adding preservative to your side of the fence – amounts to criminal damage.
RTC Fencing offer top quality fencing installation to commercial customers throughout Leicester, Nottingham, Melton Mowbray and Derby. Our professional team has over 20 years of experience in the fencing industry and provide secure, attractive and durable fencing for any budget. Get in touch today to learn about the fencing services on offer.