A wooden fence adds value, security, and beauty to any home. As homeowners, installing a wooden fence has its benefits but also comes at a price. When investing in a project like this, you should analyze the cost and the life span of a wooden fence.
How long does a wood fence typically last? A wooden fence can have a life span of about 15 years, but it can reach 20 years or more if cared for properly. The excellent news is you can do things that can extend the life span of your wood fence.
Factors That Affect The Life Span of Your Wood Fence
When shopping around for the perfect fence, it isn’t always the best idea to look for the cheaper option. The less you spend, the less time your wood fence will last.
Type of Wood
The three types of wood used for fences are usually cedar, spruce, and pine. How long your fence will last can depend on two things:
- The natural life span of the trees
- The treatment that is given to the wood
Wood from a cedar tree can last between 15-30 years, wood from a spruce tree can last 4-7 years, and wood from a pine tree can last 5-12 years.
If the wood used is pressure treated, the life span of spruce and pine wood can be extended to about 20 years and the cedar to close to 40 years. Pressure treatment contains chemicals that will help wood be more water-resistant and repel bugs.
The type of weather where you live can also affect the life span of a wood fence. Constant heavy winds can slowly beat down on your wood fence, causing it to weaken structurally.
If heavy and frequent rains characterize your location, then your wood fence will wear out quicker. Wearing out can also be a result of your fence being regularly exposed to the sun. Thankfully there are ways to make your wood fence last longer.
How to Extend The Life Span of Your Wood Fence
A wood fence needs to be correctly maintained to keep it from aging too quickly. When the wood used is treated, you should wait about a year before painting your fence. Painting it too soon will seal in moisture and lead to wood decay or rotting.
Protect your fence from debris or objects that can weigh down on it or create moisture where they touch. If your fence is surrounded by any type of greenery like shrubs or vines, you want to make sure that there is space separating them.
Other maintenance that can extend the life span of your fence include:
- Cleaning your wood fence every 2-3 years
- Reseal or repaint your fence every 3-5 years
Using wood preservatives like Copper Naphthenate
Repair Minor Issues
Inspecting your fence once a year will help you catch common, minor problems that can be easily repaired. This will prevent them from becoming more significant, expensive issues.