Every winter fences in the Pacific Northwest take a beating. Yours may look worse for wear after months of wind, ice, rain and snow. Your fence may be missing a few pieces, or it could be crooked. If the fence is relatively new, it’s probably worth repairing.
Why Is My Fence Leaning?
In many cases, a leaning fence is caused by faulty posts. Wood posts can rot. Poor quality in work or materials will result in a flimsy fence.
Here are the most frequents causes of a fence that leans:
1. Rotten Posts: Wood eventually rots, and it’s a leading cause of a tilting fence. Pressure-treated lumber lasts longer than other wood, but it too breaks down over time. Vinyl fence posts won’t rot, and they can be reinforced for strength. We recommend steel posts for many fences.
2. Improperly Set Posts: Some fence companies and DIYers take short cuts. If a post isn’t set deep enough, it will be unstable. A fence with shallow posts can start leaning even when it’s fairly new. Fences have to stand up to wind and other forces that push on them . A weak post won’t be able to do that for long. A privacy fence that is 6-feet tall, needs posts about two feet deep.
3. Extreme Weather: Lots of rain, snow and wind can cause a fence to lean. Water may disturb the soil around the posts. At the same time, wind may put pressure on the fence. In mosts cases, the weather alone isn’t to blame. Shallow posts and poor construction usually play a role. But weather can be the final straw that breaks an old fence.
4. Aging Wood: Even the best lumber wears out over time. We use red cedar which resists water, insects and rot. It’s a beautiful material and the best choice for a wood fence. But, like all natural materials, it will wear over time. Eventually, wood warps and cracks. Vinyl won’t have that problem. It won’t soak up water or split. If you want a fence that never rots, choose vinyl.
Repair or Replace?
You may be able to salvage a leaning fence by installing new posts. Setting posts is a lot of work, possibly as much as building a new fence. But, if your fence is in good shape except for the posts, you might as well reuse the materials.
If you think your fence needs to be replaced, contact Cascade Fence and Deck. We’ll give you an estimate and recommend a fence that’s right for your home or business.