Is the bad weather affecting your garden fence?

Even if your fence hasn’t fallen over in the strong winds, chances are the panels have still taken a bit of a beating over recent weeks.  Even when the weather is nice it is important to make sure that your fence is in good condition regularly to help limit the amount of repairs and replacements you will need to carry out over the years.

When the weather couples strong winds with wet days our fences and garden buildings can suffer a lot of damage.  The wind can batter fence and shed panels, causing holes to be formed or panels to be torn away from posts.  The rain can soak into the wood and without any warmth in the air or strength in the sun to dry the wood again, this can lead to rot.

It is true that pressure-treated wood is less susceptible to rot than dip-treated wood, but neither of them is indestructible when it comes to high winds.

What to look out for

There are many things that you need to look out for after bad weather when it comes to checking your fences.  First and foremost give the panels a good look over to check for any holes or cracks.  This will let you know if you are likely to need to repair or replace any panels.  As a general rule, if a lot of panels are cracked or broken they are easier to replace than they are to repair, but if you only need to fix a couple of panels then you can just replace the broken ones.

Next, you will need to check the base of the posts.  If there are pools of water around the post bases then the ground could be softened which can cause instability, as well as causing timber posts to rot if this becomes a regular occurrence.  It is best to try and remove excess water from around the post bases and then ensure that the bases have not been compromised or become unstable.

Strong winds can also sway fencing, causing the soil around the bases to move, which can again lead to unstable bases.  All bases should be checked over for any signs of instability, either by the wind or pooling water, to ensure that the soil can be packed tightly around them again and keep the posts in place.

Lastly, you will need to check any screws and hinges for signs of rust or damage.  This includes any misalignments from dropped screws and hinges, which can impact the integrity of the fence and cause further problems later on.  Stainless steel screws and hinges should not see this issue, but it is always best to check them over while doing the other checks to make sure they are still in good condition and working order.