How to Protect Your Fence from Rot

How to Protect Your Fence from Rot

Posted in: Fencing

When installing a fence, most consumers hope that they've made the right choices in picking the most resilient, cost-efficient materials and treatments. (Especially since wooden addition projects can return almost 87% of the initial investment.) But rot can still affect your wooden fences, if they're not treated with the proper care. Here are some of the biggest causes of rot in your wood fencing, and how you can avoid them.

Dry Rot vs. Wet Rot - When there's dry rot in your wooden fencing, it occurs when the protective oils on the wood break down and leave the wood underneath brittle and exposed. On the flip side, wet rot usually happens where the fence posts meet the soil, where extra moisture penetrates the wood.

Types of Wood - The material that your fence is made of can affect the rate in which it will rot. Harder, more resilient woods, like cedar, oak, and cypress are more dense, and less likely to absorb moisture as quickly as a softer wood like pine. An easy way to see if your fence's protective coating is still intact is to observe how it reacts to water. If the water beads and remains on the surface, the wood is protected. If it is absorbed into the wood, it would be advisable to re-coat it. (For an average of $10 a post, you can get wood that's already pressure-treated to withstand moisture.)

How to Protect the Wood - While moisture and inclement weather are unavoidable, there are easy things you can do to protect your fencing. Make sure to remove any leaves from around where the post meets the ground, as they can hold additional moisture and dirt that can rot the base. It's also important to keep your fence clean, as the buildup of dirt and debris can also attract insects, and this can contribute to wood damage.

A clean, sealed fence won't absorb water or dirt, which will improve the lasting power of your fences while improving the look of your home. And with over 99,939 fencing service businesses in the U.S, there's no limit to the resources available to you.

About the Author

Brett Crouse