fence designs, fence ideas, fence plans - how to build wood fences instructions

Fence Ideas

Some people think fence builders, in general, ran out of fence ideas about 1980 when the first good neighbor fences were created. Talk about a fence idea with legs–everybody wanted a good neighbor fence for the next 30 years. If I never see another sheet of pressure treated lattice my life I will be grateful. Creativity rules when it comes to fence designs, and like it or not, some fence ideas can be a bad idea. Using lattice up beside a sidewalk near a school shows poor judgment.

Fence Idea 2 Use larger posts for durability

Let’s face it, wood eventually rots. A larger piece of wood will rot at the same rate, but it will maintain structural integrity longer. Using 4×4 is going to give you 20 years of durability maximum for most fences. Upgrading to 6×6 may extend that a decade–well worth the couple of hundred in the budget.

Fence Idea 3 Use Pressure Treated for Posts

Even if you are building a cedar or redwood fence, use pressure treated lumber for the posts to maintain strength longer. Clad the posts in Red Cedar or Redwood. Pressure treated posts are stronger than redwoods.

Fence Idea 4 Consider epoxying the part of the post that goes in the ground

Waterproof Epoxy is what they make boats out of. You can apply from a paint tray with a roller. Waterproof epoxy will prevent water from infiltrating the pores of the wood. Posts always rot at ground level. Rot needs moisture, air and something to eat… That would be wood.

Fence Idea 5

Combine your privacy fence with pergolas for more privacy from windows above.

Fence Idea 6 Use a 2 part footing

A 2 part footing uses concrete in the bottom half and crushed limestone screenings at the top. This is a frost-proof footing that will keep the water off the post. We recently viewed a fence we built 30 years ago with 4×4 red cedar posts and it was still not rotted.

Make each fence section about the same width
(how far apart do you set fence posts?)

Poor planning should never be on display. Take the entire length of your wood fence and divide it into equal widths. Say… 53′.  Divide by 7… that gets you a little over 7.5′ per section. Now, isn’t that going to look better than 6- 8′ sections with one 5′ section? Home builders often use 8′ fence sections and then a short one at the end.

Fence Designs by Experts

When it comes to wood fence designs, experts often disagree. Our experts have been developing new fences for about 30 years. We offer numerous fence plans in various styles.

Above you will find numerous of our best fence designs and click the photos for more information about the projects. You will see that some of our fence designs can be purchased in plan form right online and delivered as a pdf file.

Anyone can sketch a fence but, will it last?  Will it sag under its own weight? Will it last?  Will the gate work for more than a month? This is where Expert Fence Designers come in.

Fence designs can be quirky or stately, simple or ornate. What matters is that the fence design blends with the environment and adjacent home. Sore thumbs are not fun. Let’s keep fence designs classy.

Let’s talk about Fence Designs

What is a Good Neighbor fence?

A Good Neighbour Fence it is any fence that is porous at the 5′-6′ height. This is so that neighbors can talk to each other through the fence. Giving up total privacy for the ability to chat with your neighbor as you walk by each other in adjacent yards is a neighborly thing to do. Thus, a privacy fence with lattice on top started being called a “Good Neighbor Fence”.  Getting away from plain old lattice is a modern fence idea. We have a few different fence plans available if you need instructions. Here is an example. Here is another fence idea– unique good neighbor fence with handmade lattice. Aluminum balusters were used in this fence in Ottawa to mix things up.

How tall can a privacy fence be?

Privacy fences normally range between 5′ and 10′ high. Every municipality has their own guidelines for fence heights. Before designing or choosing designs for a privacy fence, give the municipal office a call to find out what the limits are. Normally, 10′ fences are not allowed unless your home is in a commercial area. When do you need privacy? Is it when you are in the middle of the yard–it might be best to build a higher privacy fence.  If it is a small yard and the sitting area is near the fence, maybe a 5′ privacy fence is adequate.

What does your neighbor do in their yard?  If they have a deck a couple of steps up, maybe that calls for a taller privacy fence or a privacy screen2 or 3 feet in from the boundary.

Let’s talk about common sense… If your neighbor has a veggie garden against the property line, putting up an 8′ privacy fence will eliminate the light that they need for their garden. You should consider fence ideas that allow the light to go through. We have many fence plans that will fit that situation. Try an open trellis style fence plan. Your neighbor will happily train their tomatoes up the trelliswork! Fence ideas and designs should help the neighbors get along–

Fence Plans by GardenStructure.com

Fence plans are often designed for the Southern US, and sometimes do not work well when frost is a factor. Our DIY fence plans give you easy to follow step by step instructions to build as well as your local professional fence builders.

Our fence plans all come with free support by email– Now that is a great fence idea– build fences yourself with an expert looking over your shoulder!

See some of our Fence Designs on Houzz

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