Upgrade your Home's Exterior by Installing a new Fence

"Good fences make good neighbors". In a nation that prizes privacy and open spaces, fences take on added importance. Whether fencing out to reduce external intrusions such as street noise and deter door-to-door solicitors or fencing in to protect kids playing in the yard and prevent tree branches from trespassing unto a neighbor's property, American homeowners find comfort in this buffer zone. Depending on the property's architectural style, size, and landscape, as well as its residents' objectives and needs, fences serve a myriad of important functions including the following:

Multiple Reasons to Get a Fence Installed Today

  • Identification of the property's boundaries
  • Framing a garden or yard
  • Barrier against inclement weather
  • Privacy
  • Security for a swimming pool
  • Aesthetic and architectural embellishment of homeowners' yards
  • Enhancement of property's value
  • Safety enclosure for children and pets in the yard

From convex to concave, straight-edged to scalloped on the upper end, classical to customized, and heavyweight to lightweight, there are residential fences to suit all tastes and to correspond to local and design preferences. Three of the most prevalent types of residential fencing in the U.S. are 1) chain link fencing, 2) vinyl fencing, and 3) garden fencing. Each will be discussed in sequence below:

What to Expect with Chain Link Fencing

These types of fences are available in a variety of sizes, colors, and qualities. They are composed of four components, namely gates, fittings, a framework, and fabric. The elements are sold in different protective coatings and gauges or weights. While galvanized zinc is the most commonly-applied coating, polyester and vinyl coatings are also available. The color coatings blend well with the shrubbery, beautify the landscaping, and protect against rust. Homeowners should purchase the fabric on the basis of three factors: type of protective coating, dimension of mesh, and weight of wire. The most commonly-utilized surface treatment in chain link fencing is zinc. The protective coating's durability depends on how much zinc is applied. Consumers less focused on aesthetics and more on structural sturdiness may opt for an aluminum coating. Coatings combining zinc and aluminum are also available in the marketplace.

The size of the mesh indicates to homeowners the distance between the fabric's diamond-shaped wires and the amount of steel contained in the product. The larger the diamond, the less steel there is in the fabric. Typical mesh dimensions are, from small to large, 2", 2-1/4, and 2-3/8". Another important element is the wire's diameter or gauge, which informs the buyer of the quantity of steel in the product. The lower the gauge number, the higher the quantity of steel, which means the better the quality and solidity of the wire. Typical gauges are, from heavy to light, 6, 9, 11, 11-1/2, 12-1/2, and 13.

When selecting a framework for chain link fencing, consumers should consider (1) the type of coating, (2) the pipe's diameter, and (3) the steel's thickness or gauge. Common colors for the coating are green, brown, and black. Another important element is the gate hardware, which impacts the operation of the fence's moving component. Also referred to as the fittings, the gate hardware consists of such items as nuts and bolts. The hardware should function well, fit properly, and be appealing.

Chain link fencing requires little maintenance, has a greater longevity (typically 25-35 years) than iron or wood fencing, offers excellent security, and is cheaper than iron.

What's Different About a Vinyl Fence?

Fabricated out of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), vinyl fencing usually has a warrantee that lasts anywhere from 20 years to a lifetime and is low maintenance. Any dirt can easily be pressure washed or wiped clean with a hose. Homeowners can avoid the hassle of sanding, painting, sealing, or staining the fence since it does not warp, rust, rot, splinter, crack, fade, or peel. Vinyl fencing also offers the benefit of UV ray protection. Vinyl fencing is available in a variety of colors, most commonly tan or white. Some of the most popular vinyl fencing styles are as follows: (1) picket fencing such as straight picket, closed picket, convex picket, and concave picket, (2) semi-privacy and full-privacy fencing, (3) ornamental fencing, and (4) ranch fencing. Consumers may also choose to add a decorative cap that is in a flat, diamond, or ball shape. They can purchase their vinyl fencing supplies at a local hardware store, department store, or online. Many companies offer home delivery of the materials.

Fencing installation is very easy, generally requiring the homeowner to simply slide the components into pre-cut holes. Good warranties on vinyl fencing products tend to insure against fading, breaking, and cracking.

Add Privacy, Style and Security by Investing in a Garden Fence

To shelter their plants and obtain a little privacy, many Americans make use of garden fencing. This type of fencing also serves the following purposes: 1) demarcates the boundaries between the homeowner's property and that of his or her neighbor, 2) beautifies and adds a touch of elegance to a homeowner's garden, and 3) offers security by keeping trespassers at bay through spikes attached to the garden fence. Consumers may choose from a wide array of garden fence designs and preferably select one that matches with their home. Some of the most popular forms of garden fencing panels are bamboo, wood, and vinyl.

To build, repair, and install fences ranging from steel, chain link, and temporary to vinyl, wood, and aluminum, homeowners may utilize the services of a fencing contractor. Among the products offered by a fencing contractor are roll gates, security gates, screening, chain links, shadow boxes, and spaced pickets. Homeowners may locate a fencing contractor by consulting trustworthy sources. Finally, it is recommended that they solicit multiple bids from established and reputable contractors.

Home Improvement Essentials
Before you selected a home improvement contractor or repair handyman, compare free estimates and online quotes to find the most affordable rates for any home improvement projects.

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