How To Tell If Your Fence Has Had Enough


It’s that time of year again! The winds have been cruel this winter, and after a false start at spring we’ve had gale force winds and driving rain. All of this severe weather can take a fairly heavy toll on your garden, and particularly on your fence. Now, a high quality fence should last you up to 20 years if it’s treated properly, but this is usually the exception, not the rule. The average fence will sally last around 10 years before it starts to fail. But how do you know when your fence has had enough, and what do you need to look for?


Wood rots. There are no two ways about it. Over time, with exposure to rain, snow, soil, wind and the elements in general, wooden fences will start rotting. While one rotten board is nothing to worry about in itself, if it spreads it can start to cause serious issues. You’ll typically notice rot in the areas where your fence is closest to the soil, since it’s pretty much constantly exposed to moisture at this level. Applying a preservative along with regular maintenance will help prevent this for a while, but it won’t keep it at bay forever. If you see general rot creeping across your fence panels, it’s time for a new fence.


Wind, rain and the ever-shifting ground means that your once perfectly level fence is suddenly not-so-level after all. Leaning fences happen because the general structure of your fence is losing strength and structural integrity. If there is only a slight lean in one section then it can be repaired just be replacing or adjusting a few posts. But if the lean is more consistent over multiple panels, then the whole lot needs replacing.

Split Or Missing Boards

Boards can split or even break entirely for a number of reasons, from a particularly harsh winter to a very enthusiastic child with a football. A single split board can be easily replaced without much bother or cost, but if you have a pattern of split boards then it’s time to consider replacing the lot. Even the best quality wood can crack and split after years in the hot sun in summer and freezing temperatures in winter. As boards split, the strength of your fence becomes compromised, causing other structural problems.

Loose Or Missing Fixtures

Of course, a fence is more than just wood. Panels are fixed to posts (and into the ground) with metal brackets, screws, nails and other fixtures to keep them secure. Over tie these can become loose and even fall out, lost forever to the wilderness of the flowerbeds. This can cause your fence to wobble, which makes more screws come loose, and some the whole thing in swaying dangerously in the wind. At a certain point it’s useless trying to repair or replace all of them, especially since the wobbling will have damaged the integrity of the fence itself, which means you’ll likely be trying to attach fastenings to deteriorating wood anyway.

But the main sign that your fence needs replacing? It would cost you more to repair it than it would to buy a whole new fence. This is one of the biggest indicators that we see, particularly at this time of year when the high winds are blowing your gardens sideways.

At JB Landscaping we are experts in the repair of existing fencing and the installation of new ones. With years of experience and wide variety of materials and styles to choose from, we’ll have your new fence up in no time. for more information, just get in touch with the team today.