Whether you are setting up a new fence or replacing a length of fencing that needs repairing, you might be a bit overwhelmed at the prospect of doing it yourself. Actually, with a few handy tips you can get the fence up nicely but remember, it all starts with the fence posts which must be set properly. Here are three tips that will help you get that post set properly. The fencing will not be an issue if you’ve taken the time to do the posts right. Keep that in mind.
1. A Friend Always Helps!
You’ve heard it said that “two heads are better than one” but when putting up fence posts, four hands are better than two. A second set of arms may be useful when digging holes manually, which you probably will do but even with an auger, the labour can be intense. Also, when levelling those posts and fixing in place (a bit more on this below), it will help to have a friend hold the post in place unless you construct supports, also mentioned below.
2. Get Everything Together First
Of course, you are thinking of shovels, augers, screws, nails, timber or metal poles, but there are other things you’ll need on hand as well. Don’t forget a good quality pair of work gloves to protect your hands and a dust mask to wear when sawing, drilling or digging. You will also want to have ordered those fence post supports and bases mentioned above that will keep your posts level and upright throughout. Make a checklist and then ensure you have everything on it prior to digging that first hole. Don’t forget the concrete, by the way, as you’ll need that to firmly fix the post in place. Mother nature can be your worst enemy if your post isn’t securely set!
3. Understand the Basics of Measurements
One of the biggest mistakes many DIYers make is in forgetting that measurements are vital when putting up a fence post. Not only is the distance between posts important but also the diameter of the hole you dig is just as important. According to America’s television handyman, Bob Vila, the hole you dig must be three times the diameter of the pole and that is the very minimum. Some experts dig holes a bit bigger than that, but the depth is going to be important as well so do the research, again before you start digging.
Always check the weather prior to working outdoors. If it is going to rain more than a light sprinkle, don’t start digging. While some sites will say it’s perfectly fine to set posts in the rain, bear in mind that those holes fill up rapidly when the rain comes pounding down. This will not only hinder setting the posts level but will keep the concrete from drying quickly enough. In fact, there is special quick-drying cement/concrete you can buy for setting posts, so check on that when you order all those materials, fixings and tools you’ll need for the job. Laying your own fence can save you a lot of money, but only if it’s done right. These tips should help you do just that.