A nice looking fence is an accessory that adds to the attractiveness and appeal of your home. Just the same, a poor quality or poorly-maintained fence can detract from that appeal. Luckily there are simple steps you can take to maintain the look of your fence.
Check for the dreaded nests. Fences can be the perfect place to house a family of bees. While they are nice and cozy, having a hive is a serious safety issue for your family and others in your neighborhood. Before doing any repairs, you should remove any hives.
If the hive is very small, you can easily remove it with gloves and put it in a garbage bag, securing it in a covered garbage can. If the nest is large, you may want to consider calling for professional help to avoid safety hazards.
Perform a full visual inspection. After the bees are gone, you should properly check each component of the fence. Look at both sides and take note of any areas with missing, broken or crooked pieces.
Stain and paint the fence. One of the most important things you can do to maintain a wooden fence is to stain or paint it. Stains provide more protection than paint because it seeps further into the wood. This will provide more ease when maintaining the fence in the future, because you won’t have to deal with chipping or peeling paint.
It is important to apply stains and paint evenly so the final result looks uniform. You should make sure the temperature outside, as well as humidity, is compliant with the specifications on the product.
Replace broken pickets. If you discover any missing pickets during your inspection, you should replace them as soon as you can. You may have a spare, order replacement parts from the manufacturer or even call in a professional service to repair it for you.
Check for loose nails. If you find that any nails are loose, you can either use a hammer to knock them back in place, or remove and replace them. This is a very important step in maintaining your fence since it can be a safety concern for children and pets.
Oil the hinges. Many fences have a gate for entry, and due to the nature of being outside, the metal on the hinges may rust over time. The result is a squeaky fence that is difficult to open and close. Oiling the hinges, or having them replaced, will solve the problem.
Make sure the latches lock. Your fence gives you privacy, by keeping others out of your yard and keeping pets and children in. It can’t really do its job unless the latch locks! Test the latch every so often, and replace it if it doesn’t lock properly.
Remove mold. Even if you don’t know the steps to fence maintenance, you surely are able to spot mold. If the stain or paint job has been done well, use a powerwasher to spray the mold off. You may then have to stain or paint the fence again. If the staining or painting was done poorly, you may have to replace the wood.
Apply insecticide. It is important to apply insecticide to the ground beneath the fence to prevent termites from making your fence into their lunch. Once termites have gotten to a wooden fence, repairing it becomes nearly impossible. These termites may also come into your home once finished with the fence, so laying down insecticides will keep them out of your yard all together.
Courtesy of Yahoo! Voices