Author: Bravo Fence Company

How to Maintain Your Fence

At Bravo Fence, we specialize in installing the best fences in the Southeast. It’s a big job that takes significant time and labor. And although we offer great pricing, a fence is still an investment in your home. The fences we install are built to last, but no fence can last forever. If you want your fence to last as long as possible, you’ll have to take matters into your own hands. Fence maintenance is the number one factor in how long you can enjoy your fence. So once the builders are gone, it’s up to you to maintain your fence. Of course, you’re not alone. We’ve put together this handy guide to how to maintain your fence.

Fence maintenance will vary depending on the type of fence you have. In general, the nemesis of almost any fence is water. Water is the most likely culprit in aging your fence. Also, keeping your fence clean is the best way to make it last as long as possible. Sometimes just a simple cleaning is all it takes. But each material has its own needs.

How to Maintain Your Fence [infographic]

Maintaining a Wood Fence

Wood is a classic fence material, and one of the most popular. But as a natural material, wood is also subject to some of the most significant maintenance challenges. As we said, water is the big enemy. Wood is subject to rot, and water speeds up that process. Other concerns are pests like termites, carpenter ants, and carpenter bees that eat into your wood. Finally, the sun can bleach and dry out wood, causing it to splinter, warp, and eventually fall apart. But regular maintenance can help.

Sealing the Wood

The first thing you can do to maintain your fence is to seal it with paint or stain as soon as it is installed. If you use pressure-treated wood, you need to wait 4-6 weeks for the wood to completely dry before you paint or stain. Treating your wood this way prevents water from penetrating and damaging the material. Paint should last 2-3 before it needs to be sanded and repainted. Stain can last 3-5 years before it needs to be reapplied.

Inspecting for Damage

To maintain your fence, make it a habit every month to walk the length of your fence and look for any damage. Look for broken or loose pickets, tilted posts, splinters, and holes. Depending on how the fence was built, you may also need to keep an eye out for loose nails. One of the benefits of wood fences is that broken or damaged pickets are usually easy to replace. If you find loose nails, they can usually just be nailed back in place with a hammer.

Cleaning the Fence

It’s also important to keep your fence clean. A little soapy water should be enough to clean dust and pollen off your fence. If you notice tougher stains, a strong garden hose or gentle power washer should do the trick. Keep an eye out for green or black stains. Green or black stains are usually mold or algae, and simple cleaning isn’t enough. If you don’t kill the mold or algae, the stain will come right back. Luckily, it’s not hard to kill mold or algae—a solution of one cup of chlorine bleach in a gallon of water usually works. For a more natural method, replace the bleach with white vinegar.

Maintaining an Ornamental Fence

Most homeowners who choose an ornamental fence select it for its classic good looks. Ornamental fences combine strength and style, but it takes some basic maintenance to keep them strong and good-looking. Like wood, the main enemy of metal fences is water. Steel and aluminum ornamental fences are usually sealed with a coating that gives them their color plus added durability and corrosion resistance. So the most important things to look for when maintaining an ornamental fence are dents and scratches where the coating could have been penetrated. Any gap in the coating could allow water to access the raw metal, opening the door to corrosion.

Basic Cleaning

To clean an ornamental fence, use a garden hose to spray from the bottom to the top and then back down. Spraying in that order allows for maximum cleaning with as little dripping as possible. If there are still dirty spots left after the cleaning, use a soft cloth with soapy water to remove them. If you have very stuck-on dirt and grime, you can use a gentle power wash, but keep it on the lowest setting to avoid damaging the fence’s protective coating.

Spot and Repair Damage

About one a month, walk the length of the fence and look very closely for scratches, dents, and other penetrations in the coating. Keep an eye out for paint that is peeling, flaking, or chipped. If you can catch it before it begins to rust, the repair is relatively simple. First, use a wire brush to remove the paint that is coming off. Next, paint over the cleaned area with two coats of primer followed by two coats of a rust-proof paint. If the area has started to rust, you need to use the wire brush to remove all the paint and rust down to the clean metal. Treat the area with a product like Rust-Mort™ to neutralize the rust, then apply primer and paint as usual.

Maintaining a Vinyl Fence

Vinyl is the ultimate low-maintenance fence. But even a vinyl fence can benefit from a little TLC from time to time. Vinyl is free of many of the concerns that come with other materials. It doesn’t rot or rust. It isn’t painted, so there is no paint to fade or peel. It doesn’t absorb moisture, and it doesn’t warp. In general, the structure of the vinyl is pretty durable. However, surface dirt and stains can still make your vinyl fence look old and grungy.

Cleaning a Vinyl Fence

Cleaning a vinyl fence is simple. It usually takes little more than a garden hose. Start at the bottom and spray towards the top, then back down from top to bottom. If spots are left over, you can use a sponge and soapy water to remove them. The only time you will need something more to clean a vinyl fence is when the stains are alive. Living stains are usually black, yellow, or green algae. To beat the stain, you need to kill the algae. You can use a diluted solution of chlorine bleach and water or, for a more natural approach, white vinegar and water, along with a little elbow grease to kill the algae and remove the stain. If you have a large enclosure and hand washing would take forever, you can use a power washer with a concentrated cleaning fluid made specifically for power washers.

A Quick Recap

To review, water is the number one enemy of every fence. Keeping your fence clean, with a garden hose, hand washing, or a power washer is the best way to maintain your fence and keep your fence looking great for as long as possible. Wooden fences need to be repainted every 2-3 years or restrained every 5-6 years. With an ornamental fence, the main concern is any damage to the protective coating. If there is damage, priming and painting is your best solution. Vinyl is the lowest maintenance fence material, and it really only needs some surface washing.

8 Tips to Stain Your Fence

8 Tips to Stain Your Fence

A wood fence is a beautiful addition to any home. And since the advent of the modern suburb, wooden privacy fences have been the standard. But wood is a natural material, and it ages over time. If you’ve had your wood fence for a few years, you may notice that it doesn’t look like it did when it was first installed. If your wood privacy fence has lost its sheen, is looking old, or has even turned gray, it can be saved. One of the best ways to revive an old fence and protect it for the future is to stain your fence. In fact, even new fences can benefit from staining. Staining your new fence can give you great color options and protect your fence for years to come. You should consider staining part of your regular fence maintenance to keep your fence in great shape for as long as possible.

Tip #1: Prepare Your Fence

Skipping this step is the quickest way to waste your time and money and get yourself into lots of trouble. The more you prepare, the better your project will be, and the better your fence will look when it’s done.

What you do to prepare depends on whether you are staining a new fence or an old one. If you are staining a new fence, it is critical that the fence has time to completely dry. The pressure-treated woods that are used for most fencing projects today come wet. That means that they are impregnated with chemicals that help preserve the wood, and when the wood is fresh, those chemicals make the wood moist. The fence needs time for the chemicals to dry out so that the stain can effectively penetrate the wood. Pressure-treated wood typically takes one to two months to dry thoroughly. Also, make sure it hasn’t rained in a few days. If you try to paint a wet fence, the stain won’t get all the way into the wood, and you will end up with disappointing color that needs to be restrained in just a couple of years.

For an older fence, you need to make sure that you have a clean, fresh surface to paint. A power washer set to a low pressure setting can prepare most fences. Make sure to wash away dirt and cobwebs as well as mold and mildew. The pressure washer will also scour away just enough of the surface to give you a fresh surface to stain. If your fence is gray, it could be from mildew, which the power washer will clean off, or because it is very dry. A mild solvent power wash should restore the color before you stain the fence.

Tip #2: Prepare Yourself

Fence staining is a tough job. Depending on the size of your fence, it can take many hours or even days. There is a lot of labor, and if you’re not prepared, it can make a large task even harder. First, make sure you have the appropriate protective gear. At the very least, some sturdy work gloves and eye protection are necessary. Also, make sure you have work clothes and boots that you won’t mind getting dirty. If you plan to use a sprayer instead of a roller and brushes, you’ll also need breathing protection to avoid inhaling an unpleasant mist of fence stain.

Besides preparing your protective gear, make sure to give yourself time. This may be a multi-day project, so consider when you might be able to find the time. One possibility is to do it over a weekend or multiple weekends. Depending on your endurance level, you may want to tough it out and get it done in two long hard days over a weekend, or you might try to do just a panel or two each evening for a week. You can only stain when the wood is dry, so opt for a time when you don’t expect much rain. But also try to avoid working in the hottest part of the day or year. Instead of staining your fence in mid-summer, try mid-fall, when the weather is cooler, but not yet frigid.

Tip #3: Get a Good Stain

It would be a shame to put in all the labor to stain your fence, only to find that the results don’t live up to your expectations—or to find that in just a couple of years, your stain is already fading. The most important decision you can make when staining your fence is what stain to use. Big box stores sell generic stains, but remember that you get what you pay for. Cheap stains will look cheap and won’t last as long. This is not a place to try to save a few bucks. Invest in high-quality stain to get better results. Also, using better stain now will mean you can wait longer before going to all the trouble of staining your fence again.

There are two general types of fence stain: oil-based and water-based. There is some controversy on which is better, and each type of stain has its advantages. At Bravo Fence, we usually prefer water-based stains. They tend to last longer and offer more protection. They also have fewer toxic fumes and are easier to work with, especially if you are doing it yourself. Water-based stains also provide superior UV protection to keep your fence looking newer longer.

The exception to this rule is cedar fences. Cedar is a hard, dense wood. It lasts a long time, but its density makes it harder for a stain to fully penetrate cedar. In this case, we recommend oil-based stains because they are better at penetrating hardwood for a more even, deep coat. However, if you like the advantages of water-based stains, they are still suitable for cedar. You may just have to restrain a little sooner than you would with an oil-based stain.

8 Tips to Stain Your Fence [infographic]

Tip #4: Get the Right Tools to Stain Your Fence

Sure, you could try to put a nail into a wall by banging it with your fists, but that’s why we invented hammers. Humans are uniquely effective tool creators and users, and there is no reason not to use the best tools to lake your life easier. When it comes to staining a fence, there are three types of tools you could use to apply stain: sprayers, rollers, and brushes. Which you choose depends on a few factors.

If you have a large area to cover, we recommend investing in a sprayer. Many big box home improvement stores carry handheld stain sprayers that are light and easy enough for even beginners. Just make sure to read and follow all the instructions carefully. If you don’t, you could end up with stain that comes out in gobs and splashes, ruining your fence, or your sprayer could even explode, splattering stain all over you and anything else nearby.

If your fence is a little smaller, you could get by with a roller and a brush. You use them just like applying paint. To start, pour some stain in a roller pan and thoroughly wet the roller. Starting at the top, make slow even strokes with the roller, carefully applying an even layer of stain. Use the brush to touch up any spots you miss and to get to difficult areas like corners and between slats.

Whichever method you use, be sure to keep a rag handy to sop up drips and clean up areas with too much stain.

Tip #5: Give Yourself Time to Stain Your Fence

You know the saying, “haste makes waste.” It’s as if it was custom-made for fence staining! Moving too fast will come back to you in the end in ways you won’t like. Make sure that you get a good, thick coat on your whole fence. Don’t rush. If you are using a semi-transparent stain, the stain will look different if you apply it in a thicker or thinner coat. Try to be as even as possible, and expect to apply two coats. There’s no prize for finishing in a single day, so if you find you are getting tired, stop before you get sloppy. Give yourself plenty of time.

Tip #6: Protect Your Property

Your goal is to get an even coat of stain on every surface of your fence, but not on every surface of your yard. Lay a drop cloth in the area you are working and move it along with you as you move along the fence. A drop cloth will protect the plants, grass, or other landscaping near the base of the fence. This is especially important if you use a sprayer since the mist can get to places you didn’t anticipate.

If you share a fence with a neighbor, be considerate of their property as well. Ideally, you can discuss the project with your neighbor ahead of time. It is best to stain both sides of a fence. After all, sealing one side of the wood but not the other doesn’t provide any of the preservative benefits of wood stain. Arrange to do both sides of the fence, if at all possible.

Tip #7: Watch the Weather

Fence stain starts to dry as soon as you apply it but can take 4 hours before it is dry enough to withstand rain. If the forecast calls for a chance of precipitation in the afternoon, don’t bother starting to stain in the morning. In addition to watching for rain, other weather factors can make staining more or less effective. Aim to stain your fence on a day that is slightly cool and overcast. Staining in direct sunlight will cause the stain to dry faster and can cause streaking.

Tip #8: Get Someone Else to Stain Your Fence

Maybe this should have been tip #1! The truth is that staining a fence is backbreaking labor and requires some experience and expertise to get it just right. That’s not to say that it is entirely out of the realm of DIY projects, but it’s a risk. Some homeowners expect to save money staining a fence themselves. But remember, there are plenty of hidden costs. Most homeowners don’t already have all the tools they will need. That could mean investing in a sprayer, brushes, a drop cloth, and protective breathing gear, at the very least. If you’re not staining a brand new fence, you will also need to buy or rent a power washer. Taken together, you may spend hundreds of dollars just to get your equipment together. And then there is the time. Remember, time is money. If you value your time, you may see how professional staining is a much better option. And you’ll be surprised at just how affordable professional fence staining is. Contact Bravo Fence Company today for your free, no-obligation quote.

How to Pick a Fence That Withstands High Winds

Here in Atlanta, spring has sprung, and summer squalls are not far behind. While we don’t have the same threat of hurricanes as our neighbors to the south, we certainly get our share of windy storms. If you’re planning on a new fence, it’s worth considering how your fence will stand up to the annual onslaught of windy summer storms. While no fence is 100% windproof, a little planning can help you choose a fence that withstands high winds better than most.

How to Pick a Fence That Withstands High Winds [infographic]

A Wooden Privacy Fence That Withstands High Winds

Wooden privacy fences are one of our most popular fences. They are standard for residential backyards, and for a good reason. A wooden privacy fence looks good, and when installed properly, it can last a long time. The downside of a privacy fence is that it doesn’t have any gaps. This is great for privacy, but not so great if you want a fence that withstands high winds. A solid fence is like a sail in the wind, and it will take the brunt of the highest wind gusts. But there are ways to maximize the strength of your wooden privacy fence.

One way to maximize the strength of your fence is to strengthen the posts. The posts are the pillars that hold up the rest of your fence. The worst thing you can do is to place wooden posts directly into the ground. Wooden posts that directly contact soil are highly susceptible to rot. A post with a rotted base won’t stand up well to high winds. A better solution is to use a concrete footing. The old way of doing this is to dig a hole, fill it with concrete, and stick the post into the concrete. The problem with that is that water can get trapped between the post and the concrete, leading the post to rot. The modern method is to pour a concrete base and install a bracket in the base that will hold the post.

Other Wooden Fences and Wind

Another option to build a wooden fence that withstands high winds is to avoid a 100% solid fence. Picket fences stand up to wind better than solid fences since the wind can blow freely between the pickets. If you’re after privacy, there are some options that maximize privacy but still allow gaps. Contact Bravo Fencing Company to learn more about your options.

Whatever type of wooden fence you build, using a harder wood will be more sturdy. Bravo Fence offers cedar fences. Cedar is a hardwood and stands up well to water, pests, and even wind.

Metal and Chain Link Fences and High Winds

Metal fences stand up well to high winds because they are usually constructed with thin pickets with wide spaces between them. A typical steel or aluminum fence allows wind to blow right through it, with little damage to the fence. These fences offer classic beauty and great endurance in a windstorm. But they offer little in terms of privacy. Steel and aluminum fences work best as decorative and security fences.

Chain link fences are also able to withstand high winds. In a windstorm, high wind gusts blow right through the chain link, causing little or no damage. Chain link is not usually the first material to come to mind for residential fences. But modern chain link offers much more than the plain metal commercial chain link most people are familiar with. Vinyl coatings can soften the hard lines of chain link and offer a variety of colors. It is also possible to paint chain link, allowing a nearly endless variety of color options.

Building a Vinyl Fence That Withstands High Winds

Vinyl is an excellent material for building a privacy fence that can stand up to high winds. Like any privacy fence, a vinyl fence will take the brunt of the wind head-on. But unlike wood, vinyl has some give, and can even warp slightly without breaking.

In many cases, vinyl is cheaper than wood. It is also much more durable and low-maintenance. Because it is not an organic material, it is impervious to rot and pests. It also does not rust like metal fences. Modern vinyl fences have come a long way and can look nearly identical to wood fences. If you are looking for a combination of value pricing and high wind resistance, vinyl is a great option.

Selecting the Right Fence Company

Ultimately, much of your fence’s ability to withstand high winds depends on proper installation. A poorly installed fence of any type is much more likely to be toppled by a wind gust. At Bravo Fence, our installers have years of experience and don’t cut corners. With quality materials and top-notch installation, our fences are among the top performers in their categories. No fence is 100% windproof, but a Bravo Fence Company fence will give you the best performance for your money. Contact Bravo Fence today for your free quote.

What You Need to Know When You’re Planning a New Fence

Are you planning a new fence? Congratulations! A new fence is a great way to improve the look and value of your home. Whether you are replacing an old fence or starting from scratch, a new fence is always an improvement. We know that you have lots of options when it comes to planning a new fence, and it can seem overwhelming. You have choices about materials, design, fence height, colors, and even the exact location of the new fence. If you feel like you’re in a bit over your head, you have no need to worry. A Bravo Fence Company consultant is happy to work with you to plan the fence of your dreams. Contact Bravo Fence Company today to start planning your new fence.

What You Need to Know When You’re Planning a New Fence [infographic]

Where Will Your New Fence Be Located

Before you can start planning anything else, you need to know exactly where your fence will be located. We know this isn’t the fun part. That will come later, when you get to start choosing colors and designs. But it may be the most significant decision you make.

If you are planning to replace an existing fence, you may just put the new fence in the exact same spot. If you are planning a new fence, you have more options, but you need to work carefully. Many homeowners want to install a fence to close in the perimeter of their property. It’s a popular option and a great way to use your fence, but be careful. Before you mark the edge of your property, you need to know exactly where that edge is. If you overstep the boundaries of your property by even a few inches, you may end up having to take the whole thing down. We would never want to install a fence only to have it torn down, so we always make sure to follow the guidelines precisely.

To locate the boundaries of your property, you will need plans from a surveyor. If you are lucky, you have the original documents that came with the deed to your home, which should include a survey. If you’ve been in your home for a long time and aren’t sure where your survey is, you can usually get one from the city. If all else fails, you can have a surveyor from your city or county come to your home and prepare new plans.

What Material Should Your New Fence Be

The first step in the design process is selecting the material for your new fence. At Bravo Fence, we specialize in wood, aluminum, steel, chain link, and vinyl fences. The material you choose will have a lot to do with the function of your new fence. Other factors include the styles of the houses around you.

While it is not a requirement (unless your HOA has regulations about it), planning a new fence to fit in with your neighbors is always a good idea. If you’re neighborhood is mostly wood and vinyl fences, you should probably avoid chain link that’s visible from the street. But if chain link is standard for your neighborhood, it may be a great, cost-effective solution for your home. The same is true for steel and aluminum fences. Steel and aluminum can both mimic the look of classic wrought iron. If you live in a neighborhood where wrought iron is the norm—common in more urban settings—a wood or vinyl fence may look out of place.

Considerations When Selecting a Material

Matching your setting is just one consideration in planning a new fence. You should also consider your budget, your desired design, and the function of your fence.

Wood is a classic material for privacy fences. It is strong, solid—no peeping toms— and it ages well. At Bravo Fence, we offer pressure treated pine, cedar, and composite wood fences.

If you want a vintage or high-end look, we recommend aluminum or steel. A steel fence is extremely secure, and aluminum is not far behind. There are many design options for these metal fences, and the options are completely different than the options for wood.

If you like the look of wood, but want something less expensive and with less maintenance, you should consider vinyl. Vinyl fences have come a long way. They can look like wood, but without the same aging and maintenance concerns.

Chain link is strong and cost-effective. It is also easy to repair if it gets damaged. Chain link is a great solution for keeping pets contained. With added slats, it can provide a lot of privacy, too.

Choosing a Color, Design, and Height

This is where planning a new fence really gets fun. Once you’ve finalized your fence’s location and material, you can start picking out colors and designs. The options can seem a bit overwhelming, but think of it like picking paint colors for a new home. It should be fun, but also well thought out and carefully considered.

Wood Fence Designs

If you are building a wood fence, you have several options to choose from. First, determine how transparent you want your fence to be. If you are building a privacy fence, you probably want a solid fence. You can also choose semi-solid fences that have small gaps. There is also a wide selection of tops for your wood fence. The simplest top is just a straight cut. But you can also choose a variety of curved and mitered tops. Some fences include specialized tops the include lattice and other designs about the solid part of the fence. Posts can also be fitted with a variety of finials and other decorative caps.

If you are building a more decorative fence, or just marking a boundary, you can go more transparent. Picket and split rail fences are two popular styles of transparent fences. Picket fences are very popular in the front yard of cottage-style homes. They are also popular on many classic ranch-style suburban homes. Picket fences are typically ornamental, and rarely more the four feet tall. 36” and 48” picket fences are standard.

If your home is a little more rural, or even just has a rural style, split rail can complement your home. Split rail is common on farms or around corrals. There are quite a few types of split rail fence, ranging from sleek and modern to unfinished and rustic. Split rail fences are typically lower than privacy fences, at three to four feet tall. A two-rail fence usually measures 36” to the top of the rail, while a three-rail fence is usually 48” tall. In some cases, a four-rail fence can be five feet tall, but four-rail fences are not common.

Aluminum and Steel Fences

Aluminum and steel fence designs range from the sleek and modern to the classical and ornate. One of the most popular uses of metal fences is to mimic the look of traditional wrought iron. A wrought iron look-alike fence can be as ornate as you like, with curves, designs, and decorative caps. Metal fences are most often painted black, but you can select white of other colors depending on your personal style. Many traditional designs include finials that are painted gold.

For a more modern look, aluminum and steel fences can have straight, clean lines and minimal or no ornamentation. A typical modernist metal fence will include sleek black posts and matching rails. However, many colors and specific styles are available.

Chain Link Fences

Residential chain link is not limited to the plain gray fencing you see in many commercial applications. There are two primary methods for dressing up a chain link fence. The first is to cover the chain link in vinyl coating. The coatings come in many colors, and they can also soften the chain link so it is less industrial looking. Another option is to place vertical or diagonal slats in the chain link. The slats come in many colors, and they add both color and privacy to your fence. Chain link can also be painting, which expands your color option to almost any color you can imagine.

Chain link comes in rolls that range from three feet to twelve feet tall. Three or four feet is common for a front or side yard. If you plan to add slats and use your chain link fence as a privacy fence, consider a six-foot fence. Taller fences than six feet are uncommon in residential settings.

Answering Your Questions About Planning a New Fence

Planning a new fence can seem overwhelming. There are endless choices to make, and sometimes the differences aren’t clear. When you work with Bravo Fence Company, we will help you navigate these choices to design the perfect fence for you. Contact us today to get started!

5 Signs It’s Time for a New Fence

Whether you have been in your home for decades or you just bought a new one, once in a while, you should take a look at your fence. A well-made and well-maintained fence is a beautiful and functional addition to any home. But no fence, regardless of material and style, can last forever. At Bravo Fence Company, we install fences that will last for decades, especially if cared for properly. But even our fences have their limits. Eventually, it is time for a new fence.

Of course, fences don’t just fail all at once. Usually, fences deteriorate slowly over many years. So when is it time for a new fence? In many cases, fences can be repaired. In fact, a reasonable amount of repair work should be considered part of proper maintenance. But a time will come when repairs just aren’t worth it anymore; when it’s time for a new fence. It’s not always an easy choice. But in this article, we’ll try to help you decide when that time has come.

5 Signs It’s Time for a New Fence [infographic]

1. You’ve Noticed Holes in Your Wood Fence

A well-installed wood fence can last for a long time. At Bravo Fence, we install fences for the long run. We use high-quality materials and recommend appropriate maintenance, such as annual painting or staining. But even the best wooden fences are subject to the same forces as all organic materials. Heat, cold, sun, and rain slowly beat away at a wooden fence over the years. Pest like termites, carpenter ants, carpenter bees, and other burrowing bugs can take their toll. Tiny fungi and plants can rot out wooden posts and boards. As all of these forces combine over a long time, every wooden fence will eventually need to be replaced.

If you can see through any part of your wooden fence, you need repairs at the very least. If only one or two boards have holes, you might consider replacing just those boards. But if the holes are more widespread, they are probably indicative of more severe damage. Holes in multiple boards are a telltale sign of a failing fence. Whether the cause of the holes is pests or rot, the damage is probably more extensive than you can see. Even if you repair the affected boards, chances are that you won’t get all the damage. At that point, it might actually be less expensive to tear down the fence and replace it than to keep making repairs. In short, it’s time for a new fence.

2. Your Steel Fence Has Extensive Rust Marks

Steel fences are as beautiful as they are fickle. Modern steel fences are coated with special materials to resist rust, but even so, it is recommended to do an annual inspection for rust spots. After the inspections, rust spots must be sanded to remove the rust and then painted with rust-resistant paint. If you ignore small rust spots, they will only get worse. Over time, rust eats away at the metal and can cause your fence to literally fall to pieces. Rust is most common at joints where two pieces of metal were soldered together. If you let rust get out of hand, the fence can start coming apart at the seams.

Some amount of rust is inevitable and can be spot treated. But extensive rust is a sign that it’s time for a new fence. Even where rust is spot treated, the resulting joint is often less reliable than the original. Too many repairs can also make a fence look splotchy. Steel fences can last a long time, but not forever. If your fence is showing signs of rust across the whole fence, it may be time to give in and build a new fence.

3. Your Fence is Leaning

A privacy fence is meant to stand as a strong, tall barrier. It keeps children and pets inside its bounds. It keeps prying eyes out of your private space and blocks unsightly views outside your property. Privacy fences are the most common residential fence in America. As a nation, we value our privacy and our property. So when your fence begins to falter, something must be done.

If your fence is doing anything other than standing up straight, it is time to consider a new fence. In most cases, by the time a fence is leaning, it is too late for repairs. There are a few reasons a fence might lean. If a fence is leaning, something is usually wrong with the posts. Posts hold the fence in place and are typically anchored into the ground with cement over a gravel base. The cement holds the posts upright, but the cement itself is poured into a hole in the ground. If the ground shifts, the whole cement footing and the post it holds can tilt.

The ground may shift due to flooding or water that saturates the ground. Tree roots can also push posts out of alignment. If a post hole wasn’t dug deep enough, it can shift as the ground freezes and unfreezes. (That’s ultimately the fault of the installers. Fence post holes should be dug to at least below the freeze line.)

Fences can also start to lean if the posts are rotting, even if their bases are secure. If your posts or railing are weakened by rot, they may begin to lean under the weight of the fence.

In addition to problems with posts, metal fences can lean if they have been dented or damaged.

4. Your Wood Fence is Discolored

A wood fence can be a beautiful thing. Many homeowners choose to stain the wood instead of painting it to enjoy the natural beauty of the material. Some may even use clear sealants that preserve the natural look of the fresh wood. Whichever type of finish you choose for your wood fence, the finish should be reapplied annually to keep your fence protected against the elements.

Over time, wood is subject to deterioration, like any organic material. Even something as gentle-seeming as sunshine can attack your fence. The same UV rays that affect humans—the reason dermatologists urge you to wear sunscreen—can degrade your wood fence over time. The most common effect of UV rays is bleaching, in which a fence starts to lose its color and slowly fades to a light gray color. But the color change is just the most visible effect. As a fence grays, it also dries out and loses structural integrity. It may start to splinter or more easily chip, split, and break. If your fence has turned colors, take a look around for other weaknesses and signs of damage. And don’t wait until it gets worse. If your fence is gray, it’s time for a new fence.

5. Significant Accidental Damage

If your fence has significant accidental damage, it is time for a new fence. It may seem like obvious advice. But many homeowners imagine that they can just repair the damaged area and move one. The fact is, it really depends on the size of your fence, the extent of the damage, and the type of fence. Wood fences are the most resilient to accidental damage since they can often be repaired in sections. Metal fences often fare poorly when it comes to significant damage, as the damage is rarely restricted to just the immediate area of the accident.

If your fence has sustained significant accidental damage—for example, a tree falling on the fence or a car crashing through it—there are other reasons to opt for a full replacement. First, even if you repair the damage you can see, it’s hard to know how the surrounding area was affected. Weakened posts and loose footings may cause more damage in the future. Also, no repair is perfect, and it’s tough to match a new fence to a weathered fence. If you want your fence to match all the way through, consider a full replacement. Of course, if you have a very long fence, such as a rural fence, a large property, or a commercial fence, you may not need to replace the whole thing.

The Best Bet When It’s Time for a New Fence

If you need a new fence, you’ve already found the best place to get it. Bravo Fence Company is the premier fence builder in the Atlanta area. We build fences to last, and we offer a wide range of styles and materials. Take a look at our gallery to see what we do. And when you’re ready for your new fence, contact us for a free quote!

5 Good Reasons to Build a Fence in the Winter

Building a new fence is the sort of home improvement project that often takes time to get around to. Many homeowners realize they need a new fence, but don’t act right away. Instead, they bide their time, trying to decide what sort of fence to get, how much to spend, and when to get started. It’s not uncommon for homeowners to decide it’s time to build a new fence when the weather warms up and spring is in the air. After all, spring is a time for new endeavors and new projects. It would seem like the ideal time to build a fence. But if that’s what you think, you may be wrong. Here are five good reasons to build a fence in the winter. It seems counterintuitive, but we’ll lay out exactly why winter is an excellent time for fence building.

5 Good Reasons to Build a Fence in the Winter [infographic]

1. Avoid the Rush

Spring and summer are peak construction times for most fence installers. During these warmer months, jobs are often scheduled out months in advance. So when you contact a fence installation company, don’t be surprised if they tell you their next availability is weeks or even months away. Fence installation teams are busy from spring to early fall. Everyone is outdoors, and people begin to look around at their yards and discover the need for a new fence.

Building a fence in spring or summer means waiting in line with everyone else. But if you build a fence in the winter, you can skip ahead and get your project rolling relatively quickly. And construction team availability is not the only issue to consider. If your fence requires a permit, a variance, or any other input from a local government, winter is ideal. Late fall and winter are the slow months for almost every type of construction. That means faster turnaround on government permits and inspections. Everyone, from the business owners to the installation teams to the government employees, is less busy in the winter. They can dedicate more time to your project and have a much more manageable workload. If you do have to wait, you can be pretty sure the backlog is much more manageable than it would be during the busy season.

2. You Aren’t Outside as Much

Fence construction should be a relatively quick process. But it can still disrupt your backyard or any other area where you are installing the fence. During the summer, that can mean sacrificing valuable outdoor time. It’s no fun to hang out in a construction zone, and the noise alone can make your yard unlivable. So why not build a fence when you aren’t going outside?

Even in Atlanta, low winter temperatures make most backyards vacant in the winter months. That also makes it a great idea to build a fence in the winter. Instead of wasting precious summer days, you can get the job done while most people are spending their time indoors.

3. Building a Fence in the Winter is Better for Your Fence

Wooden fences are the most common privacy fences we install. But wood is a natural material and takes time to season properly. Any wood is susceptible to damage from shifting temperatures, UV rays, and rough weather. If you install a fence in the summer, summer storms and heat can warp wooden pickets. The best way to avoid warping is to install your fence when the weather is still reliably cool.

In most cases, wooden fences are built from pressure-treated wood. That means that chemicals have been forced into the timber under very high pressure. The chemicals help preserve the wood and protect it from damage caused by weather and pests. But that leaves the wood slightly moist. It can take weeks or months for the wood to dry completely and reach its maximum durability. Building a fence in the winter gives the wood a chance to season and become hardy before it is exposed to the summer heat. That can help prevent warping and splitting due to expansion and contraction with changing temperatures.

4. Save Your Landscaping

At Bravo Fence Company, we do everything we can to reduce our impact on your yard and all of your property. But no matter how careful we are, any construction on your property is bound to leave a bit of a mark. We need to dig up the area around your fence. And as materials and workers’ feet move around your yard, there may be some damage to your grass or landscaping. That’s why it makes so much sense to build a fence in the winter.

During winter, your grass and other landscaping are mostly dormant. While too much damage can be hard to recover from in the spring, it is less damaging when the plants are dormant. As long as the weather remains cold, most of the action is going on beneath the surface. Your plants’ roots are just waiting to spring to life when the weather warms. So you are less likely to damage your plants during construction.

5. Save Time and Money

Everyone loves to save time and money. When you build a fence during the winter, you can save both!

Building your fence during the winter is a great way to save time. When you try to book your fence installation during peak season—spring and summer—you may find yourself on a long waiting list. But winter tends to be slower. It is quite possible that you can get your fence installation started within just a few days or weeks. And the job can sometimes go even faster because there are more team members available to work on your fence. When a fencing company is stretched thin, building multiple jobs, you may get fewer workers to build your fence. But if you choose to build a fence in the winter, your installation company may dedicate more workers to your job, getting it done more quickly.

The winter is also a great time to save money. Some fencing companies may offer discounts when work is slower. Another significant factor in the price of your fence is the cost of materials. But did you know that prices for materials can fluctuate from season to season? It’s a matter of supply and demand. In the summer, when everyone is trying to purchase materials for their fences, prices go up. In the winter, many suppliers offer discounts, which can translate into savings for homeowners.

Contact Bravo Fence Company to Build Your Fence Before the Rush

Now that you know the benefits of building a fence in the winter, you may be jumping to get your job started as soon as possible. Luckily, Bravo Fence Company is ready and waiting for your call. Our staff is trained to be hyper-responsive. In many cases, we are the company to provide an estimate for a job, beating out the competition. And we stay with you throughout the building process. We are in touch the whole time, and our goal isn’t just to build a great fence but also to provide top-notch customer service. So if you want to find out how you can get a new fence before the rush, contact Bravo Fence Company today!

Disrupting the Industry – Top Complaints Against Fence Installers

Hiring someone to install a fence shouldn’t be difficult. For instance, when you call Bravo Fence Company, we’ll get it done in just three easy steps. First, choose your fence. We offer a wide selection of wood, aluminum, steel, chain link, and PVC fences to fit your needs. Next, we’ll prepare a custom quote for your project. We provide fast, custom quotes at competitive rates without sacrificing service quality. The final step is the installation itself. Our professional fence installers are dedicated to providing quality work across the metro Atlanta area in a prompt and efficient manner. Unfortunately, not all fencing companies are that simple. In fact, we’ve prepared a list of the top complaints against fence installers, as well as how Bravo Fence Company is disrupting the industry to bring you the best experience.

Disrupting the Industry - Top Complaints Against Fence Installers [infographic]

8. Lousy Customer Service

Customer service is key to any business. But we’ve heard some horror stories from customers who tried other fencing companies. From rude office staff to poorly behaved installers, some fencing companies just don’t get it. And that is #8 in the most common complaints against fence installers.

At Bravo Fence, we do things a little differently. We strive to provide the best customer service in the industry. Doing so allows us to retain the best reputation with our new, existing, and future customers. We are always learning how to make a customer’s experience better and adapting to the needs of the market.

We hire experienced team members and continuously train our team. The ongoing learning process allows us to provide excellent service in all of our departments. We strive to find the best solution for a customer’s needs with our years of experience. We do the work, so our customers don’t have to figure out something completely new to them, like a new fence.

7. Slow Response Time and Job Completion Time

When you want a fence installed, you don’t expect it to take months to complete. And when you reach out to a fencing company, you should expect a response in a reasonable amount of time. However, not every fencing company plays by those rules. The seventh in the most common compaints against fencing companies is that they just aren’t responsive. Questions go unanswered, and work goes unfinished. No homeowner deserves that.

Our staff is trained to respond to customers quickly and efficiently. And we are typically the first to answer calls or get back with customers compared to competitors. We understand that excellent communication and meeting a customer on their schedule will make them comfortable. Customers who feel cared for and heard can trust the product they are searching for.

As for installations, we have streamlined this process. We have a system that allows our installation team to show up to jobs as soon as possible. The majority of our jobs have the material ready on-site for installers the morning of or day before the installation. This creates an opportunity for installation teams to start right away. They can spend many extra hours on a job site to ensure they install a quality product in a timely manner.

Our installation team also has a support network, so they do not have to leave a job. If they are missing any products, our support team will take care of it. And your installers don’t have to leave the job site. Our team of specialists check up on our installation team’s needs and deliver any product they may need. Having a support system like this sets us apart from our competitors.

6. Shoddy or Low-Quality Work

If you are going to pay to have a fence installed, you expect a quality product. There’s nothing worse than going through the time and expense of fence installation, only to be disappointed with the results. That’s why #6 in the most common complaints against fence installers is that their work just isn’t satisfactory.

There’s no reason why you should pay for low-quality work, and at Bravo Fence, that will never be a problem. In fact, quality work is Bravo Fence’s greatest strength. Being one of the top fence companies in Georgia allows us to recruit the highest quality installation teams. And that gives us an advantage over the competition.

Great installation teams will not work with just any company. Like customers, they are always looking to work with the best company in the market. All of our installers have many years of experience and do the highest-quality work.

Quality of material is also extremely important to Bravo Fence. We will not install a product that does not meet our standards. When dealing with wood, it is common to have defective pieces on a job site. To avoid installing these products, we order extra material to filter through and pick out the best available. We also have the ability to return defective material to distributors. That allows us to pass along the savings and the best quality materials to our customers.

5. No-Shows and Lack of Professionalism

It’s amazing to us how often we hear about fencing companies that just don’t show up. No call, no reschedule, just an unexplained no-show. Customers have lives and arrange their schedules around a fence installation. So when an installer doesn’t show up, it can ruin a customer’s day.

Professionalism is closely tied to no-shows. While a no-show may be the height of unprofessionalism, it is not the only factor. How a company deals with no-shows and rescheduling says a lot about their values and how they treat their customers. We’ve heard of companies that no-show and then blame the customer! That’s why no-shows and a lack of professionalism are #5 in the most common complaints against fence installers.

At Bravo Fence, we value our customers and their time. Professionalism is just as important to our team as customer service. Team members know the importance of showing up to appointments on time, respecting customers while communicating with them, and representing our company in the best way possible.

4. Fences Built Not to Code

When you install a fence, there are almost always codes, laws, and ordinances to abide. Counties, cities, and even homeowners associations all have restrictions and what you can do with a fence. And if you build a fence that ignores those guidelines, you may be in for a nasty surprise. If you are lucky, you’ll be fined and required to fix the fence. However, in many cases a fence needs to be completely torn down. What a waste of your time and money! It should go without saying that any fence installers need to be aware of local ordinances before they start. That’s why it is surprising that fences not built to code is actually #4 in the most common complaints against fence installers.

Bravo Fence’s team has years of experience and knowledge of ordinances, codes, and homeowners association requirements. We always help customers make educated decisions on what type of fence is allowed. Team members will also reach out to cities or counties if we feel something may not be correct.

But we don’t just keep our knowledge to ourselves. We also assist customers with any information they may need to receive homeowners association approval or local permits. If you are building a safety fence for a pool, having a fence to code is very important. We have extensive knowledge on pools around the Metro Atlanta area. Each city or county has different requirements. So it is very helpful to hire someone who has worked in the area before. Someone like Bravo Fence.

3. Fence Installers Left a Mess

When you hire a fence installation company, you expect the job done right from start to finish. And a proper fence installation doesn’t end when the last post is installed. Like any work done on a home, a complete job means getting your home looking better than when you started. If you didn’t want your home improved, you wouldn’t have hired someone in the first place.

That’s why it is so frustrating to homeowners when fence installers finish the construction and leave before cleaning up. When that happens, the homeowners have only two options. Either they have to hire another company to clean up or go out and do the hard labor themselves. Neither option is what you expect when you hire a fence installer. Unfortunately, leaving a mess is so common that it is #3 in the most common complaints against fence installers.

Bravo Fence understands that when we’re done, you shouldn’t have any other work to do. Completing a job in a timely manner is very important for Bravo Fence and to our customers. But that doesn’t mean we cut corners. We always strive to be as unobtrusive as possible and clean up properly after an installation. When a fence is installed, there will always be spots of dirt from where holes were dug. But it is important to us that we leave a project looking better than when we arrived.

2. Took Money and Vanished or Didn’t Do the Job

This should definitely not be the second in the most common complaints against fence installation companies. But unfortunately, it is. Taking money and vanishing or not doing a job can range from an outright scam to a complete lack of professionalism. When you pay for a job, it goes without saying that you expect the job done correctly and on-time. So we find it completely unacceptable that some fence installation companies miss such a basic requirement.

At Bravo Fence, we pride ourselves on being upfront and honest with everything we do. We maintain an accredited company with an A+ rating with BBB. We are TrustDALE certified, too. To stay certified, we go through in-depth TrustDALE investigations that verify we are fair with everything we do.

Staying in communication with customers anytime they need to discuss something helps tremendously with being a trusted company. Customers can always reach our office or their sales reps directly whenever they have questions or concerns.

Your trust is justified on the day of installation when you see a dedicated and hard-working team installing your fence. We always want to maintain the best reputation in our industry. In the construction industry, there are too many instances where customers are taken advantage of or completely ripped off. Being transparent and honest with customers allows us to gain their trust and keep it for years to come.

1. Overpriced

Customers expect value out of a fence installation company. It can sometimes be hard to know the best value in fence installation. One way to judge value is to get quotes from multiple companies. But value is not the same as price, and the lowest bid may not be the highest value. Instead, value is a combination of fair pricing and high-quality work. Unfortunately, the number one complaint customers have against fence installation companies is that they were overpriced. There is no worse feeling than completing a fence and feeling like you were cheated.

At Bravo Fence, we want you to feel confident that you paid a fair price for a great fence. We are very competitive on prices on a wide variety of fences. This is mainly due to our preferred customer status with major suppliers of fencing products. Due to our volume, we are able to get materials at savings we can pass along to our customers. Our installation team is also a huge factor in price. Having a professional team that can install a fence with the proper quality and attention to detail, and complete it in a timely manner, allows us to streamline the installation and complete the job sooner, which saves time and money.

Disrupting the Industry

At Bravo Fence, we aren’t satisfied to do what everyone else does. We are in the business to disrupt the industry with excellent service, competitive prices, and the highest quality work. We are continually training, learning, and listening to customers so we can be the best fence installation company in the Atlanta Metro Area. Contact Bravo Fence Company today to learn more about how we are changing the industry and to get your free quote.

 

What Is the Best Fence to Sell Your Home?

There are lots of reasons to install or replace a fence. In most cases, the type of fence you choose depends on your needs and tastes. To a lesser extent, some homeowners are limited by a homeowners association or local rules and regulations. But then there is an entirely different type of fencing customer. Sometimes, homeowners want to put up a fence to help sell a home. In that case, the discussion about what kind of fence to install is very different. The goal is not to identify your needs and what you like. Instead, you need to figure out the best fence to sell your home. The problem with that question is that every potential home buyer has their own tastes and their own idea of the ideal fence. You obviously can’t please everyone. So what do you do? Bravo Fence has some tips that might help you in this unique situation.

What Is the Best Fence to Sell Your Home [infographic]

 

Selling Your Home Quickly

You may have heard real estate experts talk about recuperating money in a sale. Basically, it doesn’t make sense to put money into your home that won’t increase the sale price enough to cover the improvements. If you put in a $10,000 home theater and that doesn’t increase the sale price by $10,000, you’ve just lost money.

It’s true that some home improvements have a higher return on investment than others. Typically, kitchens and bathrooms appeal to buyers, so that’s a good place to spend your money. Landscaping is another part of your home where a little money goes a long way towards making your home look more valuable. But even in those places, it’s unlikely you will recoup 100% of your investment.

So what’s the point of investing in a home you’re about to sell? The answer is that it’s all about curb appeal and a quick sale. One of the most significant factors in a home’s selling price has little to do with the state of the home itself. The amount of time a home has been on the market can drastically affect the selling price. Specifically, the longer a house is on the market, the lower the offers become.

Realtors see two things in a home that has sat on the market for a while. First, they question what has been driving away potential buyers. Second, they see a desperate seller with plenty of supply, but no demand. That leads to lower offers. Buyers’ agents hope that, in the absence of any competition, you will agree to a lower price. If you are the homeowner, you may be prepared to hold onto the home as long as it takes to get your desired asking price, but time is not on your side. The best thing you can do to get the asking price you want is to make sure that your home looks appealing enough to draw in buyers, drive up competition, and sell quickly.

It’s All About Curb Appeal

When it comes to selling your home quickly, you’ll hear realtors use the term curb appeal. Curb appeal, as its name suggests, is how appealing your home looks from the street—or curb—before a potential buyer has even set foot on your property. It is the crucial first impression, and it colors everything else a potential buyer sees. Beyond curb appeal, staging is critical. You want your home to look like something out of Better Homes & Gardens. Your agent may recommend a professional staging service. A staging company may even go so far as bringing in their own furniture and interior design pieces to decorate your home in the most appealing way until it sells.

What does this have to do with your new fence, you may ask. We’re getting there!

If you plan on selling your home, you need a fence that adds to the overall appearance and appeal of your home. You may not get 100% of your money back, but when a new fence is part of an overall effort to spruce up your home, you can sell quickly and keep those asking prices competitive.

Choose a Fence That Complements Your Home

Now is not a time for personal preferences. After all, you hopefully will not have to live with this fence for very long. Instead, think about the overall style of your home and what will work best with that style. Look beyond your home, too. Is there a dominant style in the neighborhood? Pick up on the general feel of the neighborhood. You don’t want to be the home that stands out like a sore thumb.

Before you make any choices, take a look at the different colors, styles, and materials of your home. Is your home modern? A traditional ranch? A classic colonial house? Or do you have a more historic home, like a Victorian? Determining the style of your home will help you determine the appropriate style for a fence to go with it.

Next, take a look at the colors of your home. Typically, you don’t have many color choices when it comes to residential fencing. Picket fences are often white, while steel fences are usually black. If you have a wooden privacy fence, you could paint it, but avoid going with bright colors. Many homebuyers will appreciate the natural look of a wood fence that is stained instead of painted.

Finally, take a look at the materials of your home. If your home has railings, such as on a deck or porch, use a similar style for your fence. It will help tie things together and avoid clashing. If you have wooden features in your yard, like a pergola or gazebo, pick up on that style. You want your fence to look like it belongs there.

What Is The Purpose of Your Fence?

Why are you putting up a fence in the first place? If you can answer that question, you will have a much easier time choosing a fence style.

Is your home best suited for a family? Great! Build a fence that makes your home even better for a family. A wooden privacy fence helps create a more private backyard for play, relaxation, and afternoon barbecues. Does your home have great views? Then forget the privacy fence and go with a more transparent fence that lets you enjoy the view. A steel fence provides classic elegance and can keep children and pets contained without blocking out a gorgeous vista.

Does your home have a sprawling yard that disappears into deep bushes and trees? Putting up a steel fence around a large yard can get expensive. Consider a chain-link fence. You’re unlikely ever to see it, but it works great to keep pets from escaping.

Don’t Go Cheap

When you’re putting money into a home you plan to sell, there is a temptation to go with the cheapest options. After all, you’re leaving it all behind. So how much do you really care if the fence needs to be repaired or replaced in just a few years? Don’t fall into that trap. Homebuyers are on the lookout for cheap flips, and if they notice you’re cutting corners in one area, they may wonder what you’ve done elsewhere. Even worse, if a low-budget fencing company cuts corners, it could come back to bite you at the time of your home inspection. If a fence isn’t built to code, you could be forced to repair or even replace it before you can sell the home.

This isn’t the time to install a high-end fence (unless you are selling a luxury home), but you need to install something that shows that you care about your home, even when you are about to leave it. Bravo Fence Company can help you find the best fence for your budget, and make sure that it’s done right. We don’t install low-quality fences, so you can be sure that a Bravo Fence Company fence will never make your home look cheap.

Let Bravo Fence Company Help You Sell Your Home

We’re no realtors, but we do know fences. Bravo Fence Company will work with you to design and build a fence that is unique to your home. When you’re getting ready to sell, that means designing a fence that improves the look of your home. We can help you pick the right fence for your home and location. You’ll love your new fence, and so will your buyers! Contact Bravo Fence Company today for a free quote.

The Benefits of a Vinyl Fence

Traditionally, fences are made out of metal or wood. But new materials have revolutionized fencing. Composites are a great alternative to traditional wood fences. But for even more durability and savings, there is no comparison to the benefits of a vinyl fence. Vinyl is the most durable, lowest maintenance, and most cost-effective fence material out there. It’s no surprise that more and more homeowners and businesses are turning to vinyl fencing. Here are just a few of the great benefits of vinyl fencing.

The Benefits of a Vinyl Fence [infographic]

1. Almost No Maintenance

Most fences require significant maintenance. Traditional metal fences, such as wrought iron, need to be inspected for rust, sanded, and repainted. The maintenance is labor-intensive and the costs can add up. And that’s on top of the already high price tag for wrought iron. If wood is more your style, expect a good deal of upkeep. Even treated pine and high-end woods are vulnerable to weather over time. Wood fences often need repairs, and even the best wood fences will eventually succumb to the combined ravages of sun, temperature changes, and rot. If you plan to install a traditional material fence, there is really no way around maintenance costs. Some materials are less costly to maintain than others, but you should always budget for the ongoing expenses.

Vinyl is in a completely different category when it comes to maintenance. When we say that vinyl is low-maintenance, we mean it. There is really nothing you need to do to your vinyl fence after installation. In fact, many vinyl fences come with lifetime warranties! Vinyl fencing comes in a wide variety of colors, so there is no need to paint and no paint to peel.

2. Variety

When vinyl fencing first came on the scene, it was only available in a few styles. Today, however, it’s an entirely different story. One of the benefits of a vinyl fence is that it comes in almost any style you can find in other materials. The most common vinyl fence style is a privacy fence. And if you can do it with wood, you can do it with vinyl. Vinyl fences typically come in complete sections, so there is no gap between boards. Wood can often develop gaps and knots can become holes. With vinyl, that will never happen. Vinyl doesn’t rot, dry out, or fade. You can pick the style and color you like, and your fence will stay that way for as long as you keep it.

But if you thought that vinyl is only suitable for privacy fences, you’ll be surprised at the variety of modern vinyl fencing. Vinyl fencing is available as decorative picket fencing and even post-and-rail fencing.

3. Vinyl is Stronger Than Wood

Vinyl can stand up to punishment that would severely damage a wood fence. One of the most common sources of damage to wood fences is moisture. Even pressure-treated wood can absorb moisture over time. That can cause swelling that eventually rips apart a wood fence. Moisture also leads to rot, another common reason for wood fence repairs and replacement. If a wood fence is painted, the paint can peel or blister. Wood fences are also susceptible to attack from termites and other burrowing insects, like carpenter bees and carpenter ants.

Vinyl fences don’t absorb moisture. There is absolutely no danger of swelling and rot. There is no paint to blister or peel. And Because vinyl is not an organic material, termites and other pests have no interest in it.

4. Vinyl is Flexible

Unlike wood or metal, vinyl is flexible. That doesn’t mean your fence will be twisting and flapping. But if you live somewhere with high winds, vinyl is a great option. In the Southeast, storms are often accompanied by strong wind gusts. Vinyl can handle wind exceptionally well because it isn’t as rigid as other materials.

5. Great Pricing

Vinyl isn’t just impervious to many forms of damage. And it doesn’t just last forever with minimal maintenance. In addition to those benefits, one of the significant benefits of a vinyl fence is the cost. Vinyl is one of the lowest-cost materials available for fences. Vinyl is a manufactured material, which makes it much cheaper to produce than wood or metal.

The minimal maintenance required by a vinyl fence also makes it extremely cost-effective over time. Wood and metal fences need maintenance and repairs, such as painting, staining, and even replacing parts of the fence. Those costs can add up over the life of your fence. When you add in those costs, the final price tag over the life of your fence can be pretty high. But vinyl needs almost no maintenance, which means practically no additional investment after the initial installation.

6. Low Labor Costs

Vinyl is quick and easy to install. So when you hire a fence installation company like Bravo Fence Company, you can expect to pay less for labor than some other fences. Some heavy fences, like wrought iron, are difficult to work with. They take longer to install and generally require more labor. Unlike wood, you won’t pay for painting or staining with vinyl. Vinyl comes from the manufacturer in the color of your choice. There is no need to add anything after the initial installation.

7. Amazing Warranties

Most fences come with a limited warranty. The warranty length is based on the expected lifespan of the particular fence material. But vinyl fences often come up with much more extensive warranties. Lifetime warranties on vinyl are not uncommon. One of the benefits of a vinyl fence is its longevity, even with minimal maintenance. The remarkably long life expectancy of vinyl fencing allows for excellent warranties and coverage.

Enjoy the Benefits of a Vinyl Fence

If you want to enjoy the benefits of a vinyl fence, contact Bravo Fence Company to schedule your free estimate. We can help you envision the perfect fence for your home or business. Then we prepare a detailed quote for your fence. If you choose vinyl, we can tell you precisely what it will cost and how much you will save. So if you’re thinking about building or replacing a fence, consider the benefits of a vinyl fence.

Understanding the Components of a Wood Fence

Wood fences come in a wide variety of styles. When you combine the range of available materials with the various designs and finishes, the options are nearly limitless. But no matter what exact style of fence you end up installing, all wood fences have the same basic elements. Understanding the components of a wood fence is a good place to start when selecting your own wood fence. It’s much easier to make sense of all the options when you speak the lingo. So here’s our handy introduction to what exactly makes up a wood fence. There are hundreds of material, design, and style combinations. After this introduction, you’ll be able to talk about all of them with the confidence of a pro.

Understanding the Components of a Wood Fence [infographic]

Fence Posts

The posts are the most critical components of a wood fence. Every other part of a wood fence is anchored to the posts. Fence posts are usually made of 4×4 or 6×6 lumber. (It is worth noting here that 4×4 lumber is not really four inches square. Despite its name, 4×4 lumber is usually about 3.5” square. The same is true for the sizing of other parts of your fence. So before you make any design plans, be sure to find out the exact actual size of your fencing components.)

The height of the fence posts depends on the height of the finished fence. In some cases, the posts will be flush with the top of the fence. In other designs, you may want the posts to extend beyond the top of the in-fill panels. When posts rise above the rest of the fence, they are often topped with decorative finials or other post decorations. Whatever height you choose for your posts, remember that the length of the piece of lumber includes the part buried under the ground. So the posts you buy should be as long as their finished height plus the buried section.

Posts are the critical supports of your fence and need to support every other section. They are also the component of your fence that makes the most direct contact with the ground and soil. To avoid decay and rot, most posts are either made from pressure-treated wood or woods that naturally resist decay, like redwood or cedar.

Avoiding Decay in Wood Fence Posts

Even with the best precautions, posts are often the first parts of a fence that need mending. Once a year, inspect your wood fence, paying particular attention to the base of the posts. If you find you need to replace more than just a few posts, it may be time to throw in the towel. Numerous rotting posts are a sign that more damage is on its way, potentially in the in-fill material. If you are considering replacing several posts, consider buying a new fence. Contact Bravo Fence Company today to get your free quote.

Posts are the first to rot, but they are also the first components of a wood fence to be installed. The posts are usually anchored in concrete for extra strength and to avoid possible rot caused by contact with wet soil. In climates that experience cycles of freeze and thaw, posts should go extra deep to resist the heaving effect of freezing and thawing ground. Ideally, a well-installed wood fence post can last a decade or longer.

Rails

The rails are the long horizontal pieces of lumber that run between the posts. In most wood fences, the rails are made of 2×2 lumber and typically span either six feet or eight feet between posts. Some styles of wooden fences have two rails—top and bottom—while others add a third in the center. The rails are attached to the post with fasteners. The pickets or in-fill boards are then attached to the rails to complete the fence.

Pickets or In-Fill Boards

The main barrier of the fence is made up of pickets or boards. Which type you have depends largely on the purpose of the fence.

Privacy fences are made of boards butted up against each other to form a solid fence. The fence can keep others from seeing in, and it can also hide unwanted views of the outside. It can also block wind and provide shade for some plants. A privacy fence is perfect for creating a secluded backyard, and that is one of its most common uses.

Picket fences are mostly transparent, with widely-spaced wood pickets. Picket fences are ideal for delineating property and for decorative purposes. For many, a white picket fence is a part of the American dream. Picket fences work well with cottage-style houses or landscapes in the style of English gardens.

More rural-styled houses and landscapes often use a type of fence with no pickets or boards at all. Fences made up of just posts and rails are common on farms and in horse stables, where they keep cattle and horses in a specific area. One popular variation is the split-rail fence. Split rails are roughly hewn and typically slip into the posts with mortise-and-tenon joints. Common woods include yellow pine and cedar. There are also options for split rail fencing made of vinyl, which has the same look as real wood but will last much longer.

Some fence-builders install individual boards and pickets directly onto the rails. However, it is very common for in-fill to come in manufactured sections, either six feet or eight feet long. The sections are fastened onto the rails as a single piece. In some cases, sections include the rails. In that case, the rails can be fastened to the posts, and the entire section is complete.

In-Fill Board Materials

In-fill boards are the most visible components of a wood fence. So homeowners often choose a board material for its visual appeal as much as for its durability and other properties. Common infill-board materials include pine, cedar, cypress, and redwood. For a detailed discussion of wood fence materials, check out this recent post.

Pine is popular because it can be cheap and is easy to work with. Lower-grade pine can cost as little as $1 for a six-foot section. Cedar and cypress are slightly more expensive, at $2-$4 a section. They are popular because they are naturally resistant to insects and rot. Many homeowners also find the look of cedar or cypress appealing. Redwood is the most expensive of the common in-fill board materials. It can cost $8 a section. Redwood is naturally rot and insect resistant, weathers well, and has a uniquely beautiful appearance.

Professional Fence Installation

Now that you know the components of a wood fence, you can select the design and materials for your fence. Your professional fence installer can help with choosing the right materials for each section to match your design and budget. If you’re ready for a new fence, or just want to learn more about your fencing options, contact Bravo Fence Company. Our friendly office staff is happy to help, and our builders will work with you to create the perfect fence.