How to Tighten a Barbed Wire Fence Safely

a barbed wire fence running through a field of grass with hills in the background
  • 1-2 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 0-50
What You'll Need
Heavy gloves
Grip-Lock pliers
Curved nail puller

Any wire fence can be tricky to tighten, but a barbed wire fence is not only tricky to tighten, its barbs can hurt you if you're not careful. To tighten your barbed wire fence without the risk of being injured there are a few tricks you should learn. Refer to the tips below.

Tip 1 – Use a Curved Nail Puller

Pull the wire as tight as you can with one gloved hand, then use the other hand to catch the wire in the V-groove of a curved nail puller. If you catch the wire just behind one of barbs, you'll be able to pull the wire without it slipping. Then, with the curved part of your nail puller against the wire post as leverage, pull the wire toward you, and have a helper drive a staple into the post to keep the wire tight.

Tip 2 – Avoid Breaking the Wire

Be careful. You can stretch the wire so tight it can break at the far end and snap back at you, potentially causing an injury. To prevent this, have your helper tap on the wire when you think it's tight. If you hear a humming in the wire, you'll know it's tight enough. Don't tighten it any more. Just staple it, and move on to the next post.