Caring for Your Fence

August 24, 2012

Fences are exposed to the elements, which can cause wood to split and crack. So it's important to care for your fence properly.

1. A wood sealer can be used to extend the life of the fence and make it look newer for a longer period of time. You can buy a wood sealer at your local hardware store. When applying the sealer, be careful not to damage any of your property or your neighbor's property. Seal every exposed part of the wood where possible. Not sealing properly and completely can cause the wood pickets to curl as moisture penetrates certain areas. Also keep in mind that sealing your fence will be an ongoing maintenance item, not a onetime event.

2. It's important to keep the soil around your fence posts moist. Soils in Oklahoma are filled with clay and are very expansive. When Mother Nature provides rain or snow, the soil swells around the posts, which is ideal. However when we go without rain for a long period of time, the soil shrinks, causing gaps around the posts and allowing them to wobble and eventually fail. When watering your lawn, also water around the fence line or use a soaker hose to keep that area moist. It's also important to keep the soil around your home's foundation moist during hot and dry weather. This provides a stable environment for your home's foundation.

3. Make routine repairs to your fence. Replace broken boards, adjust gates and repair the hardware and latch as needed.

A little routine maintenance will extend the life and maintain the look of your fence.
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