5 Signs That Your Backyard Fence Needs to be Replaced
Need your backyard fence installed? When choosing your next home to buy or rent, most people care strongly about the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the design of the kitchen, and the solidity of the foundation. They might notice the landscaping in the front yard, the view from the upstairs windows, or the full-sized living room fireplace but one thing that is almost always overlooked is the backyard fence.
This is because the fence so often falls into the background. They’re practically part of the neighborhood and for the years a fence lasts, it’s so reliable that residents naturally take their fences for granted. However, if you have young children, pets, or want to throw parties in your spacious backyard, it’s important to take note of your fence. Gaps in the fence can lead to home security problems and pet-runaways and some fences look fine but are so old that they have become safety hazards.
Whether you’re looking to choose a new home or improve the one you live in today, here’s how to know if your fence needs to be replaced instead of simply touched-up to achieve another decade of reliable service.
1) Staining and Color Distortion
A long-held tradition of residential fencing is to use raw wood boards with no paint, sealant, or finish. While these are inexpensive to source, they are also more likely to take long-term damage when exposed to the weather for years as an outdoor fence. Signs of widespread discoloration and staining can reveal deeper structural issues like mold or rot.
2) Visible Rot
Speaking of rot, sometimes it is much more obvious when a fence has begun to simply disintigrate back into natural components. Both dry rot and damp rot can result from leaving untreated wood outdoors for too long and tends to result in brittle fence boards that crumble away from the nails and poles holding them together. If your fence has begun to rot, there’s no going backward and you’ll be replacing a few boards at the very least.
3) Splinter Hazard
How rough are your fence boards and beams to the touch? Over time as a raw wood fence weathers, the fibers of the wood pull apart making it much easier to catch a splinter on any section of the wood. This becomes even more of a problem when dry boards crack apart leaving jagged splintering edges. If your wood fence is splintering badly, it has become a safety hazard to you as well as your family, pets, and guests.
4) Holes and Broken Slats
Sometimes even if the wood boards of a fence resist rot, decay, and splintering elements, they still become compromised by extreme weather an insect life. Visible holes can be caused by insects burrowing and making a home out of your wood fence and broken boards can be caused by high-speed winds or even landscaping accidents. If there is extensive damage to a large number of your boards, it’s time to look for a replacement.
5) Significant Leaning
Finally, the number one indication that your backyard fence simply isn’t doing its job any more is significant leaning. If you can see a lean to your fence, and especially if the posts wiggle like a loose tooth when kicked, your fence isn’t keeping anyone in or out effectively and it may not even be maintaining your privacy. You might as well replace it because the structure is going to pull itself down sooner or later.
If your backyard wood fence is ready to give up the ghost, you have a unique opportunity to choose a fence that suits your style, household, and neighborhood. If you like the look of a wood fence, consider finished weather-resistant boards or you can choose to build something out of vinyl or even elegant stone and iron. When it’s time to replace your backyard fence, contact us today!