There’s no denying the charm of a wood fence. Out of all the fence types, wood often feels the warmest and most welcoming. However, wood doesn’t last forever, which makes some homeowners reluctant to install wooden fences. Fortunately, a little care goes a long way when it comes to your fence.
1. Clean It Regularly
Within the first 90 days of installation, you should reapply cleaner or brightener as described. Some people clean their wood fences annually. Make sure your cleaner includes mildewcide no matter how often you clean.
The longer you wait in between cleanings, the harder it becomes to remove dirt, and you may have to use a power washer to adequately clean your fence. However, some environments impact fences less, and some types of wood do better in certain climates, so this isn’t always an issue. In fact, some people suggest that you can wait up to five years to clean and re-seal your fence, but this depends almost entirely on your environment.
2. Apply Sealant Periodically
After cleaning your fence, coat it with an exterior wood sealant that protects your fence from sun and moisture, which can cause it to mold, rot, or dry out. Take care to get every crevice with a brush.
During these times, you can stain your fence to refresh or change its appearance. While wood is one of the fence types that require a bit more love, the end result always pays off!
3. Consider Paint
If you don’t mind the look or work, consider painting your fence, which offers more protection than simply sealing it.
4. Keep It Dry and Clear
You can also prolong the life of your fence by protecting it from sprinklers, the moisture from which can cause the wood to rot. You also want to clear bushes or vines from your fence before they have a chance to weigh it down and contribute to rot.
The purpose of maintaining your wood fence isn’t to prevent the wood from aging naturally, but simply to slow that progression. Over time, wood fences will crack, break down, and start to lean. However, each cleaning and sealant application breathes a little more life into your fence and leaves it looking brighter.
A wood fence typically lasts between 10 and 15 years. With these tips, you can prolong the life of your fence. Remember, fences typically earn houses a 65% return on the investment of installing and maintaining them. If you plan on selling your house, a beautiful wood fence will be a great selling point!