Fences are essential for safeguarding your property and keeping various types of trespassers at bay. They are even more important in areas bearing crops and vegetation that attract deer and other animals.
Deer can be a nuisance to have around plantations, as they eat most crops and sometimes transfer infected ticks to farmlands. If you are looking to install a fence for deer, it will also help keep out other pests, and thus reduce the need for chemical sprays which can be toxic to your farmland.
These functional structures require some form of maintenance after installation to prevent significant damages that can translate into expenses you could easily avoid. Tips for proper fence maintenance include the following:
1. Inspect Your Fence Occasionally
Usually, property owners have the required information about when a repair is due after installation. However, these are only routine estimates that can prove to be inaccurate. No one can accurately predict the rate at which a fence could start to get damaged.
Hence, there is a need to make a habit of checking your fence. Regular checks help you to be sure about the condition of your fence during each visit. There are also other aspects you could discover during inspections, such as a requirement to clean, repaint, strengthen, and reposition your fence.
2. Repair And Replace
Although fences may come with a repair schedule, they are only estimates. Your fence might need to be repaired much earlier or later than expected. Thus, it is best to attend to fence repairs upon noticing anything that needs fixing. A prolonged absence of inspection and going for long periods without carrying out repairs gives pests a chance to spot loopholes in your fence and exploit them.
Replacement of fence parts will sometimes be required along with fence repairs. Replacement typically becomes necessary due to extensive wear and tear in a fence, so it’s best attended to in good time. Parts that often need replacements in fences include uprights, tension lines, or wooden planks.
3. Clean The Fence
Fence cleaning is crucial to its proper maintenance. It prolongs the fence’s life by eliminating external agents that can compromise the lifespan of the fence. Such agents include mold, rust, mildew, and moisture. There are specific ways to carry out cleaning for different fence types:
- Metal Fences: Rust is the most common issue with metal fences. At the initial stages of rusting, it is possible to use steel wool to rub off the rust on the fence’s surface. A metal surface that is merely dirty can be cleaned using soapy water and a water hose.
- Wooden Fences: Mold and mildew are very prevalent in wood fences. They can be cleaned by washing with soapy water and rinsing it off with a hose.
- Plastic Fences: Polypropylene or plastic deer fencing can be cleaned by using a damp cloth to wipe its surface. For larger fences, you can use a water hose to wash off all dirt with a blast of water.
4. Control The Weeds
The presence of weeds along your fence line is highly undesirable, as they tend to hurt the fence’s stability if they are allowed to grow too long.
For instance, in electric fences, weeds can ground or short out the lines resulting in expensive repairs on the fence. Weeds can also affect the foundation of your wooden fence because they take root in the ground near its foundation. The growth pattern of the root is often unknown until it starts to affect the fence’s stability.
You can use chemical sprays, heat, and vinegar on weeds growing near fences. You can also opt for the old-fashioned way by going ahead and pulling all the weeds out of the ground with your hands.
5. Apply Paint
Painting is a proven way to prolong the life of wooden and metal fences. Acrylic latex paints can be used for wood fences to add water-resistant abilities to them. For metal fences, an epoxy metal coating can be used to prevent rusting.
Paint jobs are bound to fade, peel, or chip off over time. In such cases, a repainting job should be carried out to restore the effectiveness of the paint. Surface preparation is needed before carrying out any painting work. Preparation activities include vegetation removal, washing, and using abrasive paper on the surface of the fence.
Fences are an effective way to keep pests away. However, their effectiveness can become drastically reduced due to poor maintenance practices. The first step to maintaining your fence is to visit it occasionally to check its current state.
Replacement and repairs should be conducted on fences immediately when a need for them is discovered. Clean the fence as often as you can to prolong its life. Weed prevention and removal is a good practice for preventing major damages to your fence. Lastly, painting can be done to ensure that the life of your fence is prolonged considerably.