British autumn weather is notorious for being chilly, wet, and blustery so it’s often not surprising when we find ourselves needing to replace various pieces of fencing this time of year. If you need to replace or plant a fence post, it can be tricky to know the easiest and quickest method of doing this, amongst other challenges such as which materials to opt for.
How To Install A Fence Post
The key components to this process, before you even start mixing concrete, are preparation and measurements. Without accurate preparation and precise measurements, this operation can turn messy and costly quickly.
Firstly, using string, set out the positions for your posts. Using the ‘rule of thumb’ technique you can easily calculate the size of the hole needed for your fence post. The width of your hole needs to be 2x the diameter of your post and the depth needs to be able to accommodate roughly ⅓ of the post. Dig the holes and position your posts inside to ensure heights and levels are correct. If you are employing wooden fence posts, you should confirm that the part of the post entering the ground has been treated against wood decay and add drainage measures to the hole.
Once you are happy with the position of the posts, brace them into place ready to secure with concrete. Your choice of concrete depends on what material your fence post is made of. Post mix concrete is effective for both wooden and concrete fence posts and sets quickly. If you decide to use post-mix concrete, simply pour the required volume of water into the hole and then add the mix. This concrete begins to set after approximately 20 minutes but it is wise to avoid putting weight on the area for up to a week after.
Should I Buy Wooden Fence Posts Or Concrete Fence Posts?
You’ve got the step-by-step guide for post-installation, all that is left to decide is whether concrete or wooden fence posts would better suit your needs. Concrete posts are popular due to their durability. They are not affected by insect damage or rot and are a generally strong material with a long lifespan. However, should they become cracked or chipped, water can easily spread through the post, which will eventually lead to your fence collapsing completely.
As the surfaces are difficult to penetrate, they are easily maintainable and can endure high wind speeds. However, as fence panels cannot be fixed to concrete posts, they tend to shake in strong winds, potentially compromising the integrity of the panels. Concrete posts are also expensive to purchase and install due to their weight, which incurs additional labour costs.
Providing a wooden post has been treated correctly and installed with proper drainage, they can be long-lasting and are the more aesthetically pleasing option as they blend seamlessly with the panels. On the whole, they weigh less and when screwed to fence panels, provide a higher level of security.
Overall, before fixing or putting up your garden fence, it is vital to decide what job you want to achieve before getting to work. Different materials and methods work for different people and the job can quickly become disastrous if rushed or not thought through. If you would like to find out more about our fence post options at Wilfirs, get in touch today on 0800 0190316 or email us today via our contact page.