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What Are the Pros and Cons of Wood Fencing?

Whether you want one for privacy, to keep a pet in the yard, or to prevent young children from leaving the yard, fences are important. They can also beautify your home and add curb appeal. Of course, you have plenty of options when it comes to fencing material – there’s aluminum, PVC and wood to name just a few. Wood is the traditional choice, certainly, but is it the best? You’ll need to know more about the pros and cons of wood fencing before you make your decision.

Affordability of Wood Fencing

One of the hallmarks of wood fencing is its affordability. However, understand that this is relative and depends greatly on a very wide variety of factors, including:

  • The type of wood being used
  • The type of fence being build (privacy fence vs. spit rail, for example)
  • The length of the fence
  • The height of the fence
  • The need for gates

In addition to those factors, you need to understand that wood is more affordable than ornamental aluminum or vinyl (PVC) fencing.

Durability of Wood Fencing

Our red pine wood fencing is actually pretty durable, particularly for the price. While it doesn’t have the century-long lifespan of ornamental aluminum, it also doesn’t have the same price tag. With care (and the right wood selection), a wood fence can last for decades with only minor maintenance.

Maintaining a Wood Fence

One of the drawbacks to wood fencing is that it does require maintenance to remain in good shape for as long as possible. If you have a painted fence, you’ll need to sand, prime and repaint it regularly. If your fence is stained, it will need to be re-stained every now and then. Maintenance should be done at least once per year, and you’ll need to factor that cost into the overall price of the fencing.

Installation

Wood fencing is actually very easy to install, and it is versatile, meaning that it can be used for just about any needs. With the right preparation and shaping, it can be everything from rustic to charming to elegant in order to suit the design and aesthetics of your home.

Accessories

Wood fencing is an ideal option if you want to affix accessories to it, such as planters, lights, or other decorative elements. All it really requires is a handful of screws and a drill, and you’re done. The same cannot be said for wrought iron or plastic.

Potential for Rot

Another drawback to wood fencing is that it is prone to rotting, particularly in very moist environments. Regular staining can help to provide a longer lifespan, and the right wood choice also makes a big difference here. Moisture can also cause fencing to warp, particularly taller panels used on privacy fences.

Damage

Wood fencing is relatively strong, but it can be damaged, particularly by impacts with objects of vehicles. It’s not quite as damage resistant as aluminum. With that being said, it’s not as easily damaged as PVC fencing, either. Moreover, any damage can usually be repaired pretty easily, and often requires nothing more than replacing one or two pieces (along with painting and/or staining the replacement pieces if necessary). Damage from termites is also generally easy to repair (or replace), although you will definitely need to eradicate the pests if you want to prevent this sort of damage from occurring again.

All in all, wood fencing holds up very well. It’s not the most expensive option on the market, but does provide good durability and customization options.

Should a fence company use sub-contractors?

It isn’t uncommon for fence builders to use sub-contractor on projects and there are different ways a company might employ sub-contractors. Some use them only for the installation portion of a job while other fence companies might have independent subs working in sales as well. In our experience companies who use sub-contractors run a greater risk of unreliable service but there are other risks as well. In the Nashville area, the bigger fence companies will typically use sub-contractors to build fences. At Fence Kings, we use all employed carpenters. Our fence builders are employees within our company and you will always get the outstanding service from Fence Kings of a fence company with employees, not sub-contractors.

Risks of Sub-Contractors:

1. Often uninsured

2. Schedules set by contractor, not company

3. Unknown background of workers

4. Typically not covered under warranty

5. Could be inexperienced or day-laborers

The biggest difference between companies who use sub-contractors and those who don’t often shows in the quality of the installation. Typically, sub-contractors are paid by the foot of installed fence each day. For them to make more money they need to complete a job quickly so they can move on to the next. While you might want a job to be finished quickly so you can get back to your outdoor activities, jeopardizing quality can create unexpected repair needs in the future.

It’s important in the researching and proposal process to ask the companies bidding out the project who will be working in your yard. Having comfort in knowing what company and who’s employees will be at your home is important to many people. In addition, you deserve to have top-notch quality fence installation for the investment you are making.

We offer Free Estimates and Military, Pet Owner, and Service Personnel Discounts for all Middle Tennessee customers.

Call today

Nashville: 615.788-4461

Clarksville: 931-221-9230

 

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Choosing the Right Fence for your Family

When it comes to fences, there’s no shortage of options. Between picket width, rail length, gates and everything between, it can be hard to know where to start. But when you think about how you’re going to use your yard, and who is going to be using it too, you can narrow down your options fairly easily.

We’ll be going over a few key considerations when getting a fence:

Material – Will it be wood? Considering composite? How about aluminum?

Use – Are you out for privacy or keeping kids contained in the yard?

Who’s Doing the Work? – Finding a crew you can trust can be tricky, but going it alone can be even trickier.

After weighing all your options, you’ll know what kind of fence you’ll need, which material is right and what to ask when having it installed.

One big caveat, though. The first step in any fencing project is to check your local statues and guidelines to make sure whatever you’re installing is compliant. You don’t want to get six post holes in and a stack of panels in your driveway before you learn the homeowners association doesn’t allow iron spiked pickets.

What You’re Made of
Outside of most big box home improvement stores, right behind the seasonal trees and next to the sheds, is the fencing display. Usually up on the wall, you’ll see a few different options that run the gamut of steel, to chain link, to wood.

Each kind of fencing material has its own advantages.

Wood
When you’re looking for a versatile material that can be used in pretty much any way you want, you can’t go wrong with wood.

Wood fencing comes in all shapes and sizes, and when you can’t find a configuration you want, you can build your own. Wood fencing can come pre-manufactured in panels, typically in six- or eight-foot sections that come in sizes to either serve as containment for kids and pets or privacy from nosy neighbors.

The true beauty of wood fencing is that it can be painted to create any look you want. Paint plays much nicer with wood, when compared to aluminum or vinyl.

The downside of wood, however, is the maintenance. Unlike aluminum or vinyl, wood is an organic material that breaks down over time. And despite the fact that the wood used is treated for outdoor use, lumber can and will rot eventually. Another consideration is that wood expands and contracts with changes in the weather. Fasteners can become loose over time, requiring inexpensive spot fixes. Additional treatments such as stain or sealant can prolong the life of a wood fence and its parts.

Vinyl
Lightweight and durable, vinyl fencing is a great option for a high-end look at an affordable price. A relatively low-maintenance option, vinyl fencing is available in designs that mimic high-end wooden panels.

Vinyl fencing typically comes in white, lending a nice contrast when black hardware is used. Versatility of design isn’t an issue, either. Whether you’re partial to pickets or you clamor for a more closed-slat design, vinyl fencing comes in several options that are aesthetically pleasing no matter your preference.

And while it’s a durable option, vinyl can become brittle over time. String trimmers and lawn mower bumps can take their toll after a while. The great news about vinyl is that because it’s prefabricated and fairly modular, finding replacement parts and making repairs is a snap.

Chain Link
When it comes to durability and containment, you can’t beat good, old fashioned chain link fencing. Relatively inexpensive and incredibly durable, chain link fences are a practical idea when you need a fence, but your budget doesn’t allow for some of the more expensive options.

If privacy is what you’re after, however, chain link fencing is not your best option. There are ways to shut out the outside world with the use of plastic inserts and fabric coverings, but they’re not the ideal route if you’re also concerned about appearance.

 

 

 

 

 

Aluminum/Steel
Aluminum or steel fencing is a durable option that offers the look of wrought iron without all that pesky hammering of metal on an anvil. Aluminum or steel fencing is made of metal, so it’s sturdy, durable and long-lasting. It’s powder coated, which is a method of painting, and coats the metal for a nice, clean and even look.

Aluminum or steel fencing is made by rolling long tubes of metal through a preset die that gives each piece its shape. The thickness of the metal determines the strength of each piece, so the thicker the metal, the harder it’ll be to bend or damage.

Like vinyl fencing, aluminum fencing is largely modular, so upgrading and customizing it’s a breeze. And with so many options for post caps, rail styles and ornamental choices, you can make your fence as modest or outlandish as you please.

 

How Will You Use Your Yard?
There’s no shortage of reasons why someone might need a fence. Whether it’s to keep kids in or neighbors out, each kind of fencing has benefits for each need.

Kids
Fencing is more than just a way to keep kids penned in, it’s a way to keep them safe. Take pool fencing for example. In our area, fencing around a pool isn’t just a suggestion, it’s the law. And for that fence to be compliant, it has to have a minimum height, a minimum length between top and bottom rails and a minimum distance between pickets.

That said, metal fencing works well to keep kids safe around pools. You can even get pool-compliant aluminum or steel fencing made to help you stay within the law and keep the kids out of the water.

If you’re considering a fence for backyard shenanigans, nearly every fence will do. Wooden fencing, however, can open you up to splinters and wood-related injuries. Consider buying finished, sanded wood or doing it yourself to avoid slivers of wood under the skin.

Pets
When you’re looking to keep your pets penned in, consider a few key things. The first is height. If you’ve got a six-year-old basset hound, chances are, he won’t be hopping any four-foot fences any time soon. But, he might try to dig his way underneath anything you put up. The right depth at which the fence is set and the best height of the fence over all will keep Rover right where he needs to be.

Another thing to consider is distance between slats. Dogs lose their minds for squirrels. Mine does, anyway. And if there were a squirrel in our yard, she’d follow that thing at full speed, into a wall if possible. If the pickets between a fence were big enough for my dog to get her head through, but not big enough for her to get her head out, we’d have to do some serious thinking about the damage to our fence.

Privacy
When it’s your modesty you’re out to preserve, you’ve got options. Plenty of options. Wood and vinyl are the most traditional choices. Metal, although great for protection and decorative functions, isn’t the first option that comes to mind when privacy is the goal.

The biggest things to remember when shopping for a privacy fence are height and an obstructive view. Slats can be staggered, giving your fence some depth, or the slats can butt right up against each other to give you a fortified feel to your privacy.

Staggered slats tend to allow for more airflow, but at the right angle, don’t totally stop prying eyes. As with all fencing, it’s a matter of personal preference.

How close can I build a fence to my property line?

We love our neighbors in Tennessee, so much so that we build great fences to keep our great neighbors! Installing a fence directly on top of your property line may appeal to you if you want the maximum area available to play, plant, and relax in your yard. Whether or not doing so is actually a good idea depends on a few factors, including where you live and your neighbor’s feelings on the new fence. In this post, we’ll help you figure out how close you can build your fence to your property line and discuss common concerns related to fence placement and property usage.

What to Do Before You Install Your Fence

Get a Survey

In order to know if your fence is on your property line, inside your property line, or even on your neighbor’s property (yikes!), you’ll need a survey. Your county deed and assessor’s office may already have a copy, or you may have paid for one when you purchased your house. If not, these usually cost $500 to $1000 from a qualified surveyor. While this may seem expensive, it will save numerous headaches in the long run if you accidentally put the fence where it doesn’t belong. No one wants to rebuild their fence or address the issue in court with their neighbors!

Check Rules and Regulations

Your jurisdiction may have laws about how far back a fence needs to be set on your property, which is typically 2, 4, 6 or 8 inches from the property line. Other areas will allow you to go right up to the property line. These laws may depend on where you live; think of a subdivision with large yards where the setback won’t matter vs. an urban row home where those few inches really make a difference! You’re more likely to be permitted to build right on the property line in a densely populated area, but it varies. If you live in an area with a homeowner’s association, they may also have rules about fence placement (not to mention what type of fence you can have in your front and back yards). Check your HOA covenants to make sure you are following the regulations.

If you build a fence directly on the property line, it may mean that responsibility is shared by you and your neighbor according to the law. This is great if your wants the fence too and is happy to split the cost, but if they’re not thrilled about it, you could find yourself in a nasty legal dispute.

If you have any questions about this information, give us a call. 615.788.4461. We will be happy to help you on your next fence project.

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Support and Protect Your Kids with Imaginative Outdoor Playspace Areas

Backyard Play Space Ideas by Fence Kings of Nashville

615- 788-4461

They say the child that plays outside is a healthier child. Exploring and having capabilities challenged outdoors helps children grow physically and emotionally. Fence Kings of Nashville wants to help with this! Let us help create an imaginative play area for your kids! With over 50 years of experience in the Nashville and surrounding area, our customers can depend on quality. We have set the standard in residential, commercial and industrial fencing. Our supplies can build whatever you dream! You don’t need a huge yard to create a unique playground for your kids. Just a little imagination! Consider implementing one or two of these concepts in your yard with the help of Fence Kings of Nashville this season.

Multi-Level PlayScapes

outdoor play areas for children in Nashville

Anything with a challenge attracts kids. Particularly multi level climbing spaces are instantly magical. Build slides or other traditional means of play into your landscape or build on the soil to create hills and valleys in your yard.

Follow the Rainbow

outdoor play area for children in Nashville and surrounding areas

Make a path that leads to a specially enclosed garden just for your littles. Enclose a portion of your yard with a fence or railing where children can explore in their own space. Creating a fun pathway with multi colored pavers or oddly shaped stones for kids to ho around on gives their playspace imaginative play.

Camouflage Sandbox

Sand is a soothing sensory experience and stretches the imagination. Nestling up in a sandbox helps one integrate into the garden and nature. How about surrounding the sandbox with a miniature garden to bring inspiration to their sand creations?

Use Your Fences!

Make use of your vertical space in your yard by transforming portions of your fence into a chalkboard, or a climbing wall, or hanging buckets of toys from. This makes your play area less visually obtrusive while transforming a functional element into a creative useful element.

Let Fence Kings of Nashville Provide All Your Creative Fencing Needs!
Summer, Spring, and Fall outdoors with kids and pets

You can always call Fence Kings of Nashville for free estimates, and our associates will work with you to fulfill all of your outdoor fencing needs. Our customers can count on the quality of supplies and business integrity. We set the standard in residential, commercial, and industrial fencing. We look forward to serving you and meeting all your fencing needs to create that imaginative space for your family! Call today!

615- 788-4461