How Long Will My Fence Last?

When considering a fence, a lot of questions can go through one’s head; each of which could influence the final product choice. One of the questions we get from our clients all the time is -- how long will my fence last? Unfortunately the answer isn’t quite black and white. A number of factors play into the life-span of one’s fence such as climate, weather and maintenance. In the end though, the material plays the most important role in longevity.


Wood Fence

If you’re considering a wooden fence, there are a number of advantages such as privacy and it’s natural look that can’t be beat. As far as longevity, the type of wood fence could be an influence. Western Red Cedar (WRC) fences are as popular as they are aesthetically pleasing. Depending on the quality of the wood, a WRC fence could last you as long as 15-20 years.

Equally as popular,  fences built with Pressure Treated (PT) lumber are a great choice that can last a very long time. True to the name, PT fences are treated to protect the wood from external influences. Generally, a well taken care of PT fence can last as long as 20-25 years.

Best practice for maintaining a wooden fence includes regular cleaning, maintenance of the grass and weeds growing around it and finally adding a stain.


Vinyl (PVC) Fence

Also for those who would like a fence that provides privacy, a vinyl fence (PVC) is an excellent and long lasting choice. Though it is generally more expensive, PVC fences are increasing in popularity credited to the low maintenance, unique look as well as the variety of colours and textures available. PVC fences also are not susceptible to rotting or fungus, and stand up well to our harsh winters here in Ottawa. Many PVC material manufacturers guarantee their products up to 30 years. The longevity of a vinyl fence could be substantial. Although the material hasn’t been around enough to say for sure, experts attest that a PVC fence could last decades!


Metal Fences (Chain Link and Iron)

For someone who doesn’t require much privacy, metal fences are a great choice. The most popular choices are chain link and iron. Chain link fences are minimalistic and a cost effective choice. Most offer a protective coating or galvanization to protect it from the elements. A chain link fence doesn’t require much maintenance. Stress can be destructive to a metal fence. Over time, stress can warp and ruin the chain link, exposing it to rust-causing oxygen. Its best to avoid putting stress on your residential chain link fence as much as possible.

Should you fancy a fence with a bit more character, an iron fence is an excellent choice in material. One of the most durable fencing materials, iron can provide a functional barrier around the yard while serving a decorative purpose. To avoid corrosion on your iron fence, the application of a rust-resistant coating every few years is recommended.

With proper care metal fences too can last decades!


Hopefully now you know the purpose of your fence, your tolerance for upkeep and a general idea of how long your fence will last. If you have any further questions or comments, we encourage you to contact us! We would be more than happy to share our expert opinions with you. To get in touch, visit our contact page or give us a call at (613) 862-4275.

Comments for this post are closed.