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A how to on fence post repair

A good fence provides privacy and naturally enhances your home security. It can also be an attractive addition to your garden, but will soon become an eyesore if damaged or allowed to become worn over time. A wobbly fence can become a safety issue.

As domestic fences are typically made from wood, they can show damage in many different ways as the wood degrades. Some common fence repairs revolve around issues like mould, rot, wobbly fence posts and insect attacks. This article will outline the different types of fence repairs, how to do them and the costs involved.

Fence repair

The correct approach to fence repair depends on the type of fence you are working with.

Do check out our how to repair a fence video below if you’re more of a visual learner!

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Wooden fences

Wooden fences are the most common type of fence in the UK, due to their aesthetics and affordability. Timber fences look natural and are easy to install as they are so lightweight. Wooden fencing however, is susceptible to breakdown, more so than other materials, it also requires the most upkeep. Panels can easily come loose or break. The finish can also become worn away and dull, therefore it will periodically need to be revarnished and re-stained.

Wooden fences typically require the following repairs:

  • Applying treatment to corroded or mould affected areas
  • Tidying up aesthetic blemishes such as wind damage
  • Replacing or repairing a wobbly fence post or panel

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Metal fences

Metal fencing acts as a powerful, protective barrier on flat or sloped land.  Powder-coated metal is ideal for rainy climates, as the coating slows down the oxidation process which causes rust. Metal is generally more expensive than wooden fencing. Some professionals regard metal fencing as impractical for a domestic setting, believing it should only be used industrially.

Metal fences typically require the following repairs:

  • Repainting chipped or scratched surfaces
  • Replacing bent or damaged fence posts

metal black fence in garden

Fence post repair

When repairing a fence post, you will need to assess what kind of repair your fencing needs. The most common fence repairs are broken or rotten stakes and posts or a sagging gate.

Basic fence post repair

If a fence panel and post is rotten or damaged, it may need replacing altogether. The easiest way to replace a broken fence panel or post is to wedge out the old post and replace it with a new one.

  • Remove the post from the fence using a crowbar. Create a gap between the panel and the post, exposing the nails. These can then be removed by force or sawed through or by using a hammer.
  • Dig out the base of the fence post, and drill out concrete if there is any. Moving to the post on the other side of the panel you wish to remove, repeat the same steps, wedging the old panel off the post.
  • Depending on the size of your fence, you may want to get professional help for stake and post removal, as it can be quite a large task to do yourself. It is also important to ensure minimum damage is done to the healthy parts of your fence, as this could affect the sturdiness of your entire fence.
  • Replant your new fence post, fill the surrounding hole with concrete if this method has been used for your other posts.

How to repair a fence post with a concrete spur

The fence post is the section of a fence most likely to rot, as it is partially buried underground. It is very common for these posts to come loose if they are not buried deep enough. If your fence post is slightly damaged, it could be repaired instead of entirely replaced. If that is the case, you can repair it using a concrete repair spur to support the post.

  • Before you begin your repair, consider attaching temporary wooden support to the fence post to ensure the integrity of the fence is not compromised.
  • Dig a hole around the base of the fence, concentrating the hole around where the repair needs to be. If there is any rotten wood, you can saw it off at this point and coat the remaining wood with wood preserver.
  • Place the concrete spur against the remains of the post, whilst trying to ensure the post has stayed vertical.
  • Insert the bolts through the hole in the concrete spur, tapping them with a hammer to ensure they are secure. After attaching the nuts and securing the concrete spur, you can then fill the hole with concrete, smoothing the surface down so rainwater runs away from the wooden post.
  • After the concrete has dried you can remove the wooden brace. To learn more about concrete pouring, check out our concrete pouring cost guide.

When completing this sort of intricate repair, we highly recommend employing a professional to get the job done. If done incorrectly, your fence could be in even worse condition than before. More so, with a high cost of materials, such as expensive ready mix concrete, there may be little cost difference at the end of a DIY attempt.

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How to repair a sagging wooden gate

Nothing looks more sad and dreary than a sagging wooden gate. Gravity is the single worst enemy of gates, as it is constantly pulling the gate panels down, putting stress on the hinges and loosening fasteners. Metal gates are less likely to experience sagging, whereas wooden gates are more vulnerable as hinges can easily loosen and move in the wood. If your gate is not sagging drastically, it should be a relatively quick fix, if the sag is quite pronounced, you may want to ask a professional’s advice.

  • Tightening the hinges could be enough to straighten out your wooden gate, as heavy-duty screws can loosen over time.
  • Switch out your current fixings for galvanised or stainless steel bolts when retightening your fixings. These will prevent rust and corrosion. In order to do this, you will need to carefully remove your gate panels from the hinges and then reinstall the gate.
  • Install metal corner brackets to provide your hinges extra support to further prevent sagging.

Need help with your fence repair?

When repairing a gate or fence post, there is a real risk that you could potentially destroy the entire fence if you make one wrong move. Depending on the extent of the damage, it may be best to buy a new fence, but if you want to make a repair you must ensure you use precision and have the correct materials.

You can hire a professional to help you with fence post repair, and the cost of the job can be anything from £40 to £1,839, depending on the scale of the repair job. We have a fence repair cost guide available here if you would like to know more about the costs involved.

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What kind of equipment will I need to repair a fence?

This depends on the type of repair you are hoping to carry out. Some generic tools you will need could be:

  • Drill and screwdriver bits
  • Drill bit (sized for hinge bolts)
  • Socket wrench and sockets
  • Pliers (to remove old nails)
  • Shovel
  • Sledgehammer
  • Ready mix concrete (if you are filling a hole in a fence post)

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