Superior Fence Company
Fence Post Replacement
The most common type of fence repair that we perform in the greater Sacramento, California region is a post replacement! This may be a great fix for your leaning or weak fence before it falls. Let’s talk about when replacing just the fence posts is a great solution and when it may not be.
Before we get into discuss post replacements, lets discuss some of the other post repair options on the market that people see at their big box store! They go by a lot of names like E-Z mender, Post Buddy, and the PostUp. In our experience, these metal post repair devices are not a great option. Sometimes they work for a while and sometimes they basically don't at all. In the end, if you have a rotten or broken post either it needs to be replaced or the entire fence. Here are some points to consider when deciding if you should just replace the posts:
Age and Condition of Fence Needing Post Replacement:
If a wood fence is under 10 years old or under 30 percent of the posts are rotten and need to be replaced then your fence is a great candidate for posts replacements. If the fence is older or the overall condition of the fence is deteriorated, then you have to consider if you are just chasing a fence that needs to be replaced. Post replacement is an ideal repair when a fence is in overall good shape and is not too old, but has limited rot in a few posts.
Should We Change from Wood Posts to Metal Posts When Doing a Post Repair:
Generally speaking, our best advice to this is no. The best time to change from wood posts to metal posts is when you replace the entire fence. When we replace just posts we have to set them to the height of the current fence, however when you later replace the entire fence the height or placement might be slightly higher. Additionally, if you have a few metal posts in a line of wood posts to reuse these metal posts down the road we need to then dig out all the wood posts and follow the same post pattern. To make it simple… unless there is a moisture/water issue in that area that is causing those posts to rot out, it is normally advisable to replace the wood posts with new pressure treated posts, and when you finally fully replace the fence, you can then replace with hidden steel posts.
How do you replace a rotted fence post?
How Do We Change Out a Rotten or Broken Fence Posts? Changing a broken or rotten fence post involves just a few steps. While its not a lot of steps, most people agree that it is not as simple as it appears. First, we disconnect any fence panels that are connected to the post. We use a Sawzall to cut the nails where they connect to the post. Next, we dig a hole in the dirt next to the concrete ball of the fence post. By creating this hole right next to the concrete ball we are able to then break the concrete into parts and remove them and the old or damaged fence post. Now that we have the post and the concrete out of the ground, we are able to replace the new post exactly where the old post was. For things to line up correctly it has to be in exactly the same spot and to the same height. We concrete that post in and then we are able to reconnect the fence panels. That is the step by step of how to change a fence post. While it sounds like just a few steps, it takes experience and the proper equipment to do this repair properly and efficiently.
What Sorts of Fence Posts Do We Replace?
We replace pressure treated wood fence posts, galvanized and power coated chain link posts, black ornamental iron posts, vinyl posts and farm posts (peeler cores and T-Posts). All of these come in a variety of sizes, but the overall process is the same.
Broken Gate Posts- Can Just the Posts Be Changed?
Years of experience has taught us to properly repair a gate and to be able to warranty it we are unable to replace just the posts on a wood gate. While on a few we can usually reuse the panels if they are in ok condition, with wood gates we have found that for it to properly work we need to replace the gate door at the same time. While it takes a bit more material, we actually save time and labor by replacing the door at the same time. Additionally, then we are able to warranty the gate. On the other hand, with chain link and ornamental iron gates, we are actually usually able to reuse the metal gate doors and just change the posts if the doors are in good condition.
5 Ways to change a rotten or broken fence post:
If you are looking to try your hand at replacing your fence posts yourself (DIY style), here are 6 different methods you might try:
Dig a hole next to the concrete footing and tip the post out. Then you slide a new good post into place.-- This is our choice method in most cases.
Wrap a chain around the post and top of the concrete ball and use a high lift jack to pull the post out.
Screw a lag bolt through a chain into the broken off fence post and then slowly and safely use a /come along/high lift jack to pull the post out. This only works if the top of the post is not rotten.
Dig down a few inches and screw into the side of the post to pry it out with a lever and fulcrum. If the top of the broken post is rotten this is a better method so the screw/bolt holds when pulling the post out.
Leave the concrete ball in the ground and try removing just the wood out of it. You would do this by using a drill bit to break up the wood. What helps remove this wood is a shop vac. Once all the old wood is out you can install a new posts. We recommend replacing the wood post with a steel post so that it will be smaller in dimension leaving space for concrete to be placed in the hole. Otherwise if you replace a 4x4 wood post with a 4x4 wood post in this method you will not be able to fit new concrete in the hole and your post might be wiggly.
Superior Fence Construction and Repair Inc is a locally owned and operated fencing company in Rocklin and the greater Sacramento region of California, and we specialize in post replacements and fence repairs in addition to installing new fencing.