Choosing the proper fencing for your property can add significant character and a layer of security. It can also boost your home’s curb appeal and resale value when installed and maintained correctly. However, several problems can arise with timber and metal fencing materials. This article will discuss six common problems that homeowners in Penrith face with their fences and how you can avoid them or slow their progression.
1. A Leaning Fence
A leaning fence can be a significant problem for several reasons. First, it can detract from the overall beauty of your property as it’s hard not to notice a badly leaning fence, making a property look unkempt and older. Second, it can be a safety risk if it should happen to fall on someone. Several potential causes of a leaning fence include soil erosion, improper installation, rot, and impact damage.
When your fencing contractor installs your new fence, they can avoid the problem of a leaning fence by using the best rot-resistant material for your posts. Additionally, by evaluating the soil on your property and ensuring they are digging deep enough for your fence posts, there should not be any leaning because movement in the soil has been accounted for, and therefore, reactive soils have deeper posts to counter this threat.
2. Rotting Timber
Timber palings are by nature, susceptible to rot. Over time, exposure to the elements can lead to the wood slowly degrading because it cannot dry out completely, or the UV and heat causes the naturally occurring oils in the wood to dry out and evaporate, causing damage to the integrity of the timber.
When you choose your materials for your fence, selecting high-grade materials such as Colorbond or pressure-treated timber can alleviate these concerns, as they are more rot-resistant than traditional wood materials. In addition, give your fence the best chance of a long life by considering adequate drainage around the base, addressing any areas where water might pool and removing vegetation from nearby.
3. Rusting Metal
Much like timber, metal fencing is also affected by exposure to the weather. Instead of rotting, this material will rust. Over time, this can lead to entire sections of metal posts or panels being worn away, causing structural damage. In addition, it can make a property look pretty disheveled.
To prevent this type of damage, choosing a metal material for your fencing that has a finish with a high level of water resistance is essential, better yet, anti-corrosive properties. This finish will prevent water infiltration, keeping your fence looking new for longer.
4. Insect Damage
Insects can be seriously damaging to timber fencing. Termites are the primary issue as they feed on and slowly destroy the wood. When the infestation becomes significant enough, it can lead to the need to replace the entire fence. Not all areas of Sydney are prone to termites. However, Penrith is a higher-risk area, especially if your property is closer to bush areas.
There are options for sealing your timber fence against insects, which can be applied yearly. In addition, there are fencing options that are more resistant to insects than others, such as metals like aluminium and steel.
5. Stains and Mildew
Over time, your fence can become stained or develop a layer of mildew, especially applicable if you have a natural material like timber. While this is unappealing, the good news is that it’s generally not difficult to remedy.
When you choose your fence, picking a color that’s easy to maintain is ideal. Consider using a pressure washer if stains or mildew are hard to remove. Following this treatment, use a sealant to ensure your timber fencing will be well preserved. Remove vegetation nearby to prevent branches and leaves from creating the conditions for mildew to flourish.
6. Warping Material
With sun and moisture exposure, your fence materials may become warped. You may see sagging, bending, or twisting of sections. Eventually, this can lead to your fence failing and requiring the replacement of entire sections.
The best way to prevent this situation from occurring is to choose the highest quality timber or metal for your fence. Higher-quality materials are designed to withstand the elements, standing the test of time. In the first six months of the fence’s life, be sure to nurture it by spraying water on it to avoid the timber from drying out in its vulnerable stage of maturing, or choose a hardwood like Merbau, spotted gum or jarrah for a hardy, yet more expensive option.
The nature of a fence being outdoors and exposed to the elements 24/7 means that deterioration is bound to happen over time. There are steps like choosing high-grade materials, installing the posts deep enough, and regular protective treatments that will prevent damage or slow the process of deterioration. All of this is to ensure that you get the best return on your investment in your new fence.