Fence post

Wooden fences have a limited lifespan, and at some point spot repairs and paint touch-ups just won’t do it anymore.

The bottom of these panels had been slowly rotting from constant contact with the ground and even the additional battens, stapled in place a few years ago to prolong a complete overhaul, had now outlived their usefulness.

old fence

To remove the old panels, we first cut them in half with a sawzall, taking any nails in stride. Many of the fence posts also succumbed and with a little persuasion snapped off at ground level.

pieces of old fence

Establishing where the new fence posts would be placed was a matter of working around the remains of the old posts, deeply embedded in concrete. To avoid having to compete with old concrete, it was better to start with one shorter, 4-foot section of fencing, and placing subsequent 8-foot-long panels with the new posts neatly side-stepping the issue.

marking out the boundary line

A bit of string, staked at either end, measured out where the posts would be aligned exactly on the property line. Then it was time to start digging the 2-foot-deep post holes.

first section in place

Section by section, the cedar fence panels were added along the perimeter of the yard. Instead of using concrete, these posts were secured in place with expanding, lightweight polyurethane foam, specially made for fences.

expanding lightweight polyurethane foam

From a stack of 8-foot-wide x 5-foot-tall cedar panels, we cut some in half and tailored others to best fit the shape of the boundary line and to custom-build gates. We also cut our own post caps to fit over exposed posts for extra protection of the wood.

custom gate and post capsPressure-treated strips of old fence were recycled where possible to add kickboards to protect the bottom of the new fence. These boards can more easily be replaced over the years as necessary, while the new fence is kept well off the ground to prevent moisture damage.

new fence extending around the property

30 panels, 19 holes dug and posts secured, hundreds of screws to keep everything in place and 4 days later, the yard looked better than new – and just in time to show off this season’s splash of rhododendrons.

fence panels

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