How to Prepare your Fence for Winter

After you’ve installed a fence around your property, how much thought do you put into its maintenance?  Have you ever stopped to consider how the elements will affect the quality of your fence?  While snow, while falling, looks gorgeous, it can be harsh on your home.  If you’re weatherproofing for the season, don’t forget to make sure your fence is just as prepared as the rest of your home.  Believe it or not, poor maintenance can lead to your fence breaking or falling over, altogether.  That’s the last thing you’ll want to deal with in the middle of winter.  Make sure your fence is well protected against the elements by doing some routine prep work and being mindful throughout the season.

Fix Any Part of your Fence Before Winter

The end of Summer or beginning of Fall are the best times of year to do maintenance work before the cold steps in.  Since you’ll be working outdoors, you want to make sure you’re in comfortable conditions and can focus on your handiwork.  Don’t let repairs wait until it’s too cold for you to hold a hammer.  Inspect your fence for breaks, rot, weak spots, or other damage and repair them so it remains strong throughout the winter season. If the damages seem too daunting you can always hire a professional like Evergreen Fence and Deck.

Trim Nearby or Towering Trees

If you have any trees or large bushes around, above, or near your fence, trim the branches so that any loose or low hanging branches don’t break off and fall onto your fence.  While this may not seem like a big deal, when snow weighs down on limbs, larger parts can break off and damage your fence.  Avoid the hassle of fence repairs by doing some light prep work.

Make Your Fence Visible

If you live near the road, take extra care to make sure your fence is visible.  Believe it or not, fences are more likely to get hit in the winter because drivers don’t see them, especially if they are white and can blend in with any surrounding snow.  At nighttime, especially in the colder months, it also gets dark way earlier, which means drivers have less daylight visibility.  If your fence and the surroundings get covered with snow, be sure to brush it off so passersby are aware of your fence.

Don’t Allow Snow Buildup

Clearing snow on and around your property isn’t fun, we know.  It’s thankless work that gets completely erased as more snow falls.  It’s especially important not to allow snow to build up on wooden fences, as wood absorbs water.  Allowing such saturation to the wood to sit can result in mildew or rot.  Even if you have another type of fence, removing snow will help it remain stronger, longer, without the extra weight and saturation to wear it down.  You can also consider staining or sealing your fence to waterproof it.

Don’t Pile Snow Close to Your Fence

It’s second nature to just shovel snow off to any available corner when trying to clear your sidewalk or yard.  However, leaning large amounts of heavy snow can weaken and damage your fence.  Be mindful of where you plow or shovel.  The weight of snow can cause your fence to warp or even fall over.

Winterizing your home is an important annual task to ensure you make it through the season without costly damage to your lifelong investment.  It’s easy to neglect your fence after installation.  After all, it just sits there.  However, taking a little time to ensure your fence is strong and properly maintained can go a long way in saving you from future repairs.

Dom Dannis Author