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Materials for Wood Fence | Types, Hardware, and Installation

It may surprise you to learn that the most popular kind of fence in the US is made of wood. Nevertheless, even if it was among the first materials we used for fencing, the wooden fencing business has advanced significantly thanks to new technology, including improved materials and installation methods!

Fairfax Fence can help you select the ideal wood fence type for your needs and budget.

Key Takeaways

  • Choose the Right Wood: Select durable lumber species like cedar or redwood for longevity and aesthetics.
  • Invest in Quality Hardware: Opt for corrosion-resistant hardware to ensure the longevity and stability of your fence.
  • Prioritize Post Hole Fillers: Use concrete for secure and long-lasting post installations that can withstand various weather conditions.
  • Emphasize Material Durability: Consider factors like rot resistance and insect repellent when selecting fencing materials for longevity.
  • Regular Maintenance is Key: Stay proactive with maintenance tasks like staining and repairs to prolong the lifespan of your wood fence.
  • Proper Installation is Crucial: Follow detailed installation steps to ensure a sturdy and secure fence that enhances your property’s appearance.

Also Read How Long Does a Wood Fence Last | Factors, Maintenance & Alternatives

Types of Wood for Fencing


Cedar, known for its natural oils, is highly resistant to rot and insects, making it ideal for outdoor use. Its durability withstands harsh weather conditions, ensuring a long-lasting fence.


  • Natural resistance to decay
  • Aromatic scent adds to outdoor ambiance


  • Higher initial cost compared to other wood types
  • Requires regular maintenance to preserve appearance


Redwood, another popular choice, boasts natural beauty and excellent durability. Its rich color and texture enhance the aesthetic appeal of any property while providing reliable protection.


  • Naturally resistant to decay and pests
  • Minimal warping or shrinking over time


  • Limited availability in some regions
  • Higher upfront investment but pays off with longevity

Pressure-Treated Wood

Pressure-treated wood, treated with chemicals to resist decay and insects, offers an affordable alternative without compromising quality. It’s a practical option for those seeking a balance between cost and durability.


  • Budget-friendly compared to cedar and redwood
  • Effective protection against rot and pests


  • Chemical treatment may not be suitable for all environments
  • Requires staining or painting for enhanced aesthetics

Wood has been a timeless fence material, cherished for its natural beauty and versatility. Whether you prefer the rustic charm of cedar or the elegance of redwood, wood fences exude warmth and character that complements any landscape.

When it comes to finishing touches, homeowners can choose to paint, stain, or leave natural wood picket fences. Painting offers endless color options while providing an additional layer of protection against the elements. Staining enhances the wood’s natural beauty while preserving its integrity. Opting to leave the wood untreated allows it to age gracefully, showcasing its organic appeal.

Also Read How to Install Privacy Fence Panels | Step-by-Step Guide

Choosing Hardware for Fences


When it comes to fence materials, hangers play a crucial role in ensuring the stability and durability of your wooden fence. Hangers are metal brackets that attach the fence panels to the posts securely. They provide essential support, especially in areas prone to strong winds or other external forces.

Deck Screws Deck screws are another vital component for securing wooden fences. These screws are designed to withstand outdoor conditions and offer excellent holding power. Using deck screws instead of nails can prevent the wood from splitting and ensure a longer lifespan for your fence.

Galvanized Nails Opting for galvanized nails is a wise choice when it comes to fastening your wooden fence. These nails are coated with a layer of zinc, making them resistant to rust and corrosion. Galvanized nails are ideal for outdoor applications, providing a strong and reliable hold for your fence boards.


Selecting the right hinges is essential for the functionality and security of your wooden fence. Two common types of hinges used in fencing are self-closing butt hinges and T-hinges.

  • Self-closing butt hinges: These hinges automatically close the gate behind you, offering convenience and added security.
  • T-hinges: Known for their strength and durability, T-hinges provide solid support for heavy gates while allowing smooth opening and closing movements.


When it comes to choosing the right latches for your fence, several factors come into play. The latch serves as the primary locking mechanism for your gate, ensuring privacy and security.

  • Opt for a latch that complements the overall design of your fence while providing secure closure.
  • Consider factors like ease of use, reliability, and resistance to weather conditions when selecting a latch for your wooden fence.

Also Read How to Set Fence Posts in a Straight Line | DIY Tips & Techniques

Selecting Post Hole Fillers


Concrete is essential for anchoring posts securely in the ground, providing stability and durability to the fence. It is widely used due to its strength and longevity.

Concrete mix should be prepared according to the manufacturer’s instructions, ensuring the right consistency for optimal performance. Properly set concrete ensures that the posts remain upright and withstand external forces.


Gravel plays a crucial role in post hole fillers by facilitating drainage around the posts. Placing gravel at the bottom of the hole helps prevent water accumulation, reducing the risk of rot and decay.

By allowing water to drain away from the base of the posts, gravel helps maintain the structural integrity of the fence over time. It acts as a protective barrier against moisture-related damage.

Significance of Choosing Right Materials

Selecting the appropriate post hole filler materials is vital for ensuring the longevity and stability of your wood fence. Using high-quality materials like concrete and gravel can significantly impact the overall strength and durability of your fence.

Choosing the right post hole fillers also contributes to minimizing maintenance requirements in the long run. By investing in quality materials upfront, you can avoid costly repairs and replacements down the line.

Also Read How to Seal a Fence | Step-by-Step Guide

Considerations for Material Durability

Local Climate

When choosing materials for a wood fence, consider the local climate as a crucial factor. Different climates can impact the durability of materials differently. For instance, in areas with high humidity or frequent rain, rot-resistant materials like cedar or redwood are ideal choices to ensure longevity.

Location and Dimensions

The location and dimensions of your fence also play a significant role in determining material durability. Fences exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods may require UV-resistant materials to prevent fading and deterioration over time. Moreover, fences built in windy areas might need sturdy materials like metal posts to withstand constant pressure.

Balancing Time and Money

It’s essential to strike a balance between time and money considerations when selecting durable materials for your wood fence. While certain materials may be more expensive upfront, they could save you money in the long run by requiring less maintenance and repairs. Investing in quality materials initially can result in a longer lifespan for your fence, reducing the need for frequent replacements.

Also Read How to Stain a Fence | Ultimate Guide for DIY Success

Maintenance and Cost Analysis

Cedar vs. Redwood Maintenance

Cedar fencing requires regular staining every two to three years to maintain its appearance and integrity. On the other hand, redwood fence boards are naturally resistant to decay and insects due to their high tannin content.

Vinyl vs. Chain Link Cost-Effectiveness

Vinyl fencing, although initially more expensive than wood, proves cost-effective in the long run due to its low maintenance requirements. It does not need staining or painting like wood fences. In contrast, chain link fencing is a budget-friendly option upfront but may require more frequent repairs over the years.

Fairfax Fence’s Wood Fence Alternatives

Fairfax Fence offers a range of low maintenance wood fence alternatives, including composite materials that mimic the look of wood without the upkeep. These materials are durable, resistant to rot and insects, requiring minimal maintenance over the years.

Also Read How Much Does a Fence Cost | Installation Guide

Preparing for Fence Installation

Basic Materials

To install a new fence, you will need essential materials such as wood for the fence itself, common tools like a hammer and nails, and measuring tape. Ensure you have fence posts to provide structural support.

Ground Preparation

Before installing a wood fence, it is crucial to prepare the ground properly. Start by clearing any debris or vegetation along the fence line. Use a level to ensure the ground is even and make adjustments as needed. This step is vital to ensure a sturdy and long-lasting fence.

Layout Planning

Properly planning the layout of your fence is essential for a successful installation. Measure the desired fence length accurately and mark the locations where the fence posts will be placed. Consider the correct height for your fence based on your needs and local regulations.

Professional Installation Services at Fairfax Fence

If you prefer to leave the installation process to experts, consider utilizing professional fence installation services offered at Fairfax Fence. We provide convenience and expertise, ensuring that your wood fence is installed correctly and efficiently.

Also Read How to Secure a Pallet Fence | Step-by-Step Guide

Installing Rails and Pickets

Gate Rails

Pressure-treated 4 x 4s play a crucial role in providing structural support for the gate rails of a wood fence. These sturdy posts ensure the stability and durability of the gate, preventing sagging over time.


When it comes to installing pickets for your wood fence, using prefab fencing panels can significantly streamline the process. These pre-assembled panels save time and effort, ensuring a more efficient installation.

Outside Pickets

For a visually appealing and durable wood fence, utilizing high-quality materials like cedar fencing is essential. Cedar’s natural resistance to decay and insects makes it an ideal choice for outside pickets, ensuring longevity and minimal maintenance.

Rail Locations

Properly spacing the 2 x 4 rails along the length of the fence is crucial for maintaining structural integrity. Ensuring consistent rail locations helps distribute weight evenly, preventing warping or bending over time.


In rail and picket installation, selecting premium materials like redwood fence boards can enhance both the aesthetic appeal and longevity of your wood fence. Redwood’s natural beauty and resistance to rot make it a popular choice for boards in fence construction.

Batter Boards

Using batter boards to establish straight lines and precise measurements is essential for achieving a professional-looking wood fence. These temporary guideposts ensure accuracy during layout and construction, resulting in a straight and level fence line.


Maintaining consistent spacing between pickets is key to achieving a uniform look for your wood fence. Utilizing strings as guides can help ensure equal spacing throughout the installation process, enhancing the overall appearance of the fence.


Creating a well-thought-out layout before installing rails and pickets is crucial for a successful wood fence project. A carefully planned layout ensures proper alignment, spacing, and overall aesthetics of the finished fence.

Also Read How to Keep Dogs from Digging Under Fence | Effective Strategies

Constructing a Secure Fence Gate

Hinges and Latches

When it comes to gate hardware, selecting the right hinges and latches is crucial for ensuring the functionality and security of your fence gate. Gate posts should be sturdy enough to support the weight of the gate, especially if it’s a heavy wooden one.

Steps for Construction

To construct a secure fence gate, start by installing barrel bolts on the inside of the gate for added security. Next, use an anti-sag kit to prevent the gate from sagging over time. These kits typically include cables and turnbuckles that help maintain the gate’s alignment.

Importance of Durable Materials

Using high-quality materials like stainless steel screws and durable masonry for your gate’s foundation can significantly increase its longevity. Opting for concrete mix instead of dry concrete when setting your gate posts ensures a stronger foundation against external elements.

Benefits of Proper Installation

A well-constructed fence gate not only enhances the overall aesthetics of your property but also adds to its curb appeal. By following precise instructions and utilizing the correct tools, you can create a secure entry point that complements both your front yard and backyard.

Maintenance Tips

Regularly inspecting your fence gate for any signs of wear and tear is essential in preserving its structural integrity. Applying a fresh coat of paint or sealant can help protect the wood from rotting due to exposure to moisture or harsh weather conditions.

Also Read How to Paint an Aluminum Fence Like a Pro

Tips for Maintaining Your Fence

Wood Maintenance Tip

Wood fences require regular maintenance to ensure longevity. Applying a weatherproof sealant every 1-3 years helps protect the wood from rot and decay. Inspect for signs of damage, such as loose boards or insect infestations, and address them promptly.

Vinyl Maintenance Tip

Vinyl fences are low-maintenance but still need care. Regularly cleaning with soap and water can prevent mold and mildew growth. Check for any cracks or discoloration, as these may indicate the need for repairs or replacements.

Chain Link Maintenance Tip

Chain link fences are durable but can rust over time. Applying a rust-resistant coating can help prevent corrosion. Inspect the fence for any bent or damaged links, which should be repaired to maintain the fence’s integrity.

Benefits of Regular Inspections and Repairs

Regular inspections allow you to catch issues early, preventing costly repairs down the line. By addressing small problems promptly, you can extend the life of your fence and avoid more significant damage. Whether it’s fixing a loose board on a wood fence or patching up a hole in a chain link fence, timely repairs are key to preserving your investment.

Also Read Moving Fence Panels? Here’s How to Do It Right

Closing Thoughts | Materials for Wood Fence

You’ve learned about the best wood types, hardware, post fillers, durability considerations, maintenance tips, installation steps, and gate construction for your fence. By following these guidelines, you can ensure a sturdy and long-lasting fence that complements your property. Regular maintenance will help preserve its beauty and functionality over time. Remember to inspect for damage and make repairs promptly to avoid costly replacements.

Ready to elevate your property with a beautiful and durable wood fence? Contact Fairfax Fence today to explore our range of high-quality materials, expert installation services, and maintenance solutions. 

Let’s create the perfect fence that enhances your property’s aesthetics while providing security and privacy. Get in touch now to schedule your consultation!

FAQs | Materials for Wood Fence

What are the best types of wood for fencing?

Cedar and redwood are popular choices due to their natural resistance to rot and insects, while pine is a more affordable option. Consider the desired look, durability, and maintenance requirements when selecting the wood for your fence.

How do I choose the right hardware for my fence?

Opt for galvanized or stainless steel hardware to prevent rusting and ensure longevity. Select hardware that complements the style of your fence while providing adequate support and security.

What post hole fillers should I use for my fence?

Concrete is a common choice for stability and durability. Ensure proper mixing and compacting to secure the posts firmly. Gravel can also be used as a cost-effective alternative that provides drainage.

How important is material durability in a wood fence?

Material durability is crucial for long-term performance and minimal maintenance. Choosing high-quality wood, protective finishes, and proper installation techniques will enhance your fence’s lifespan and reduce repair costs over time.

What maintenance tasks are essential for a wood fence?

Regularly inspecting for damage, cleaning with mild soap and water, applying sealant or stain every few years, and addressing any issues promptly can help preserve the appearance and structural integrity of your wood fence.

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