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Wooden Privacy Fence Designs

Wooden Privacy Fence Designs | Choosing the Right Style for Your Yard

As you consider wooden privacy fence designs for your yard, the possibilities may seem overwhelming. With various heights, wood types, styles like shadow box or board-on-board, and customization options, selecting the right fence requires thoughtful planning beforehand. 

Wooden Privacy Fence Designs Overview

Wooden privacy fences are popular for homeowners looking to enhance security and seclusion in their yards. There are several styles of wooden privacy fences to choose from, each with its aesthetic appeal and function. When selecting a fence design, consider your budget, needs, and preferred level of privacy.

Solid Panel

Solid panel fences are simple yet effective. These fences utilize concrete and wooden panels placed between wooden posts. The dense panels provide maximum privacy and wind protection but may restrict airflow and sunlight. They are an affordable and durable option for most yards.


Shadowbox fences feature alternating solid and spaced wooden panels, allowing for partial visibility and airflow. The spaces between panels can be left open or filled in with latticework. Shadowbox fences provide a good balance of privacy and openness for yards. They have a more decorative look than solid panel fences.


Picket fences employ spaced vertical wooden slats or pickets between posts. They provide minimal privacy but allow for unrestricted airflow and visibility. Picket fences have a classic, rustic feel and are well suited for front yards or properties with limited space. The gaps between pickets can range from narrow to wide, depending on your needs.


Lattice fences utilize a criss-cross wooden lattice attached to posts. They provide a semi-open structure with partial privacy. Lattice fences are lightweight, affordable, and pair well with climbing plants. However, they may not withstand high winds or solid panel options.

Popular Types of Wood Fences: Different Styles and Materials

When selecting a wooden privacy fence for your yard, you have several styles and materials. The two most common types of wood used in fencing are pressure-treated pine and cedar. Pressure-treated pine is an affordable, durable softwood chemically treated to resist rot, decay, and insect damage. Cedar is a naturally rot-resistant softwood with an attractive reddish tone and aromatic scent.

Board-on-Board Privacy Fences

Board-on-board fences provide maximum privacy. Boards are placed tightly together with no gaps, typically in a vertical or horizontal orientation. These solid wood panels are framed between 4×4 or 6×6 posts. Board-on-board cedar or pressure-treated pine fences can last 15-30 years.

Shadowbox Privacy Fences

Shadowbox fences are more decorative, with alternating boards at right angles to create recessed panels. The design provides privacy while still allowing some airflow. Due to their additional lumber and construction requirements, shadowbox fences typically cost slightly more than board-on-board styles.

Picket Fences

Picket fences feature evenly spaced pointed boards or “pickets” for a classic look. They provide moderate privacy and are a lighter, more open alternative to board-on-board or shadowbox fences. Picket fences often have a rustic cottage feel and are commonly made of cedar, redwood, or pressure-treated pine.

Composite and PVC Fences

Consider a composite or PVC (polyvinyl chloride) fence for a low-maintenance option. Composite fences are made from wood fibers and plastic, while PVC fences are made entirely of plastic. Both are durable, weather-resistant and never need to be stained or painted. However, they tend to cost significantly more than natural wood fences.

Wood Privacy Fence Ideas: Choosing the Right Look for Your Yard

You have several design options when selecting a wood privacy fence for your yard. Your style depends on your needs, budget, and personal taste. Fairfax Fence is a reputable fence installation company that can guide you through the wood privacy fence choices and help determine the best fit for your property.


Board-on-board (also known as shadowbox) fences feature overlapping vertical boards with spacing in between. They provide maximum privacy while still allowing some airflow. Board-on-board is a popular, affordable choice for residential yards.


Stockade fences have tight-fitting vertical boards placed side by side. They offer the most complete privacy of all wood fence styles. While stockade fences tend to be slightly more expensive, they are ideal to conceal your yard fully.


Picket fences feature spaced vertical pickets with pointed tops. They have a classic, decorative look while still providing moderate privacy. Picket fences typically cost less than board-on-board or stockade fences. They work well for small yards or as an accent fence.

Rail and Post

For a rustic, open feel, consider a rail and post fence. It has horizontal rails secured between vertical posts, with space in between. While rail and post fences offer little privacy, they have a charming countryside appeal. They are the most budget-friendly wood fence choice.

Also read: How Quality Fencing Enhances Home Value and Security

Building Your Wood Fence: Tips for Installation and Maintenance

Proper installation and maintenance are critical to its longevity and performance when installing a wooden privacy fence. Follow these tips to build a fence that will last for years to come:

Choose high-quality materials

Select rot-resistant wood types like cedar, redwood, or treated pine for fence posts and boards. These woods have natural oils that resist weathering and insect damage. Use 4×4 or larger lumber for the posts and bury one-third of the posts in concrete for stability.

Space posts evenly

The average span between posts is 6 to 8 feet. Space the posts evenly for maximum strength and an attractive appearance. Bury the posts at least 2 to 3 feet deep for adequate support.

Attach rails securely

The horizontal rails provide support for the vertical boards. Attach the top rail within 6 inches of the top of the posts. The bottom rail should be around 1 foot above ground level to allow clearance for weed trimmers and mowers. Secure the rails to the posts with galvanized brackets.

Install boards with proper spacing.

Use 1×6 or 1×8 lumber for the vertical boards with a smooth side facing outwards. Leave 1/2-inch gaps between boards to allow for expansion and contraction. Stagger the board lengths for a natural look. Secure each board to the top and bottom rails and any intermediate rails.

Seal and maintain the fence.

Apply a sealant or stain within a week of installation to protect the wood. Reapply every 2-3 years. Inspect the fence periodically and make any necessary repairs to holes, cracks, or damaged boards and rails. Trim back any plants that contact the fence. With proper care and maintenance, a wooden privacy fence can last 15-30 years.

Wooden Privacy Fence Designs FAQ: Answering Common Questions

Choosing a privacy fence design involves considering several factors to determine the best style for your needs and budget.

What are the most popular wooden privacy fence styles?

Some of the most well-liked wooden privacy fence styles include:

  • Shadowbox: Alternating wide and narrow vertical boards with a gap between each board. Provides partial privacy while still allowing some air flow and light through.
  • Stockade: Vertical boards placed side by side with no gaps, providing maximum privacy.
  • Picket: Vertical boards with pointed tops spaced evenly apart. A more decorative and open style that provides minimal privacy.

What types of wood are best for privacy fences?

The two most popular and durable types of wood for privacy fences are:

  • Cedar: Aromatic, resistant to rot and insect damage. Cedar fences can last 15-30 years. More expensive but requires less maintenance.
  • Pressure-treated pine: Pinewood chemically treated to resist rot and insects. Less expensive than cedar but requires more maintenance like staining or painting. It can last 10-15 years.

How much do wooden privacy fences cost?

The cost of a wooden privacy fence depends on the following factors:

  • Material (cedar vs. pressure-treated pine)
  • Style (shadowbox vs. stockade)
  • Height (6 ft. vs. 8 ft.)
  • Quality and thickness of wood
  • Installation complexity

You can expect to pay between $8 to $30 per linear foot for materials and installation. For a typical residential yard, the total cost will be $1,500 to $10,000 or more, depending on the size of your yard and the options selected.

Do I need a permit to install a privacy fence?

Most areas require permits for fences over 6 feet high or fences bordering public property. Check with your local building department regarding permit requirements in your city or county. They will specify height limits, placement limits, and approved materials for privacy fences. Permits typically cost between $50 to $200, depending on the jurisdiction.

Explore Stunning Wooden Privacy Fence Designs Today

As you can see, several appealing wooden privacy fence designs are to be considered for your yard. Focus on choosing a style that fits your aesthetic preferences and functional needs. Calculate the linear footage to determine materials and budget accurately. And remember to check local regulations about fence height and other specifications that may impact your decision. With careful planning and selection, a beautifully designed wooden privacy fence can increase your outdoor living space and enjoyment for years.

Get a fantastic wooden privacy fence for your yard with Fairfax Fence! Our experts will help you pick the right style that suits your needs and budget. Make your property secure and beautiful. Contact Fairfax Fence today for a chat and upgrade your outdoor space! We also provide a FREE estimate!