How to Build a Wood Fence

wood fence

When it's time to build a wood fence, whether it be for privacy, security, or both, the information in this article will save not only time, but also money and labor.

Step 1 - Choose Your Fence Materials

Depending on how large your property is and what you actually hope to accomplish with your fence, the materials you use can vary significantly. For example, a fence meant to shield your property from wandering human eyes will inevitably differ from a fence meant to act as a barrier for natural critters.

Picket fences are a great way to add a classy touch. Plus, they are not difficult to build. Another popular choice is a basket weave fence. You can also ask the sales person at your local home improvement store to show you board fences or siding fences.

Step 2 - Get Permits and Find Your Location

Before jumping in further, always have your land surveyed to determine your correct property line. Make sure you also know the local zoning codes.

Step 3 - Space the Fence Posts

The standard spacing for fence posts is 6-8 feet, with the variance determined by the type of fence and the topography. Begin with the end posts, then cut spaces for the middle posts.

Step 4 - Set the Fence Posts

To properly set a fence post, make sure each length of post is at least 33-percent underground when everything is said and done. You can buy a post-digger at the home improvement store. Treat the wood to make sure it lasts longer.

Bury the posts either in dirt or, depending upon your preference, concrete. Use a level to make sure that they are properly upright and aligned. Stake the posts to provide extra support while the posts settle. Once it's all set, tamp the posts in dirt before building a concrete mound to protect the structure form water. Add extra support at the corners. Let the posts settle for a few days and cap the top of the posts.

Step 5 - Add Rails to Fence Posts

The next step for building a fence is to attach rails at both the top and the model. Use blocks or brackets for rails that are used on the posts' bodies.

Make sure the lower rail is a minimum of 2 inches from the ground.

Step 6 - Join the Posts

For joining the posts of a wood fence, you can use a lap joint, which is simply a groove-cut joint that doesn't require nails or screws. For a stronger structure, use a butt joint, and for a really great finish, use a slotted joint.

You will find that there is a vary wide variety of fences to choose from when it comes to style. Chain link fences are an easy way to block off a space, but they are unsightly.

Other fence styles can be used alongside your landscaping to to make an attractive structure. You can also build a fence whose primary purpose is privacy.