Learn How to Repair a Wooden Fence with these 5 Tips

by October 5th, 2021

While wooden fences are visually appealing, environmentally friendly, and offer solid protection, they can grow weak from exposure to external elements.

So, if you find sections of your wooden fence broken or rotten, don't think about replacing them yet.

That's right. There are home-based solutions for damaged rails, rotten pickets, and even sagging gates. So stick around to find out how to repair a wooden fence through a few straightforward methods.

Tips on How to Repair a Wooden Fence

Before beginning the fence repairs, ensure you have all the necessary tools and materials to help you throughout the repair and fence installation process.

These can include:

  • A hammer
  • Screw-driver
  • Several pieces of wood
  • Galvanized nails and screws

Other materials may be needed, depending on the extent of the damage. But if you only get these, repairs can begin in the following areas:

Repair the Rails

Because of the proximity of rails to the ground, they are the most affected by water when it rains or moisture from the earth's surface.

To fix a rotten rail, first, soak the damaged area with a wood preservative to contain the spread to one fence area.

Then, nail a 2x4 piece of wood at the base of the rail where the rot has infected most. This is to provide extra support to the already weakened surface.

Make sure the piece of wood is horizontally positioned and extends across the infected area before you can nail it down in place.

Apply a waterproof sealant on both sides of the wood and at the top to prevent moisture from penetrating.

Lastly, if you want, you can reinforce the rail using T-braces. Drill several holes on the rail and into a post and install T-braces on the holes using galvanized screws.

Caulk the joints and paint them for extra protection.

Always confirm that the rail isn't wholly dismantled before you begin repairing it. This way, you'll know if you need a new fence or not.

Repair the Fence Posts

Fence posts are always a problematic area in many fence types. This is because fence posts can either break or decay due to excess moisture.

If this happens to be the case with you, follow these steps to restore it to normalcy.

Get two tall pieces of wood from your collection or at the store that extend beneath the ground but leave an 18-inch space above ground.

Cut each end of both 2x4 pieces and install these ends into the ground on each side of the damaged post to drill a screw hole on one of the upper-end corners of the gate and another at the opposite. 

Drill holes on both wood pieces that go into the post, where you'll insert galvanized bolts and tighten them up together firmly.

If you don't want a repeat of the same in the future, dig out a hole around the base of the post and insert temporary braces here. Then carefully pour out concrete into the hole and allow it to dry.

Repair the Fence Gate

Gate fences can either sag or refuse to close properly. In both these cases, the solution is simple.

If your gate doesn't close, the problem must lie with the hinges.

Here, you'll have to replace the current hinges with stronger ones. You can do this by first gluing pieces of dowel on previous holes. Then, drill new holes and install longer carriage bolts that hold.

But if the problem is sagging, the solution is to lower the end.

After, insert a heavy-duty turnbuckle on each hole and make sure it's tightened. This way, the gate is in a stable state of balance.

Repair the Fence Screening Parts

Fence screens are one of the more exposed parts of a fence, and hence, they rot and break faster than other components in a fence.

The initial screening repairs process begins by measuring the length and width of the undamaged screens. Next, you'll use these measurements to create new screens with the help of cut boards.

For example, when replacing pickets, you'll have to place a cut board on the undamaged picket to get the measurements for a new one.

Once you have the well-measured pieces, remove any traces of broken screens still attached to the fence and nail the new ones in place using a hammer.

Please make sure they're all aligned before painting them to form a unifying picture.

Repair the Fence Sections

Damages to fence sections can be irreparable, especially when the rail is completely dismantled. Therefore, you need to know when to replace a wooden fence altogether.

You start fence section repairs by cutting 2x4 rails and laying them flat across the posts to ensure they're the correct fit.

Then, take the bottom rail and nail it 6-inches above the ground into the posts. This is to prevent moisture from entering the rails.

Nail both rails into the posts and attach them to the fence post to complete the repair. Ensure the distance between one rail and the base is uniform across the board and tighten the bolts using galvanized fasteners.

It would be best to tighten the rails at the top, bottom, and joints too.

Repair Your Wooden Fence Today

It's no secret that wooden fences are the best for homes but come with their fair share of challenges.

Now that you know how to repair a wooden fence, you don't need to keep replacing your fence with new ones. Just a few repairs here and there, and you're good to go.

If you'd like help with repairing your broken fence, give us a call, and we'll send a professional right away.

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