Pros and Cons of Using Steel Posts For a Wood Fence
If you are planning to install a Houston wood fence on your property, you might consider using high-quality steel posts rather than wood or vinyl-covered wood. Although steel fence posts and pipes are primarily used for chain-link fences, they have several advantages when used with a wooden fence. They could be sunk in concrete as with wooden posts, but if they are sunk deep enough, concrete is not always necessary. They can be purchased in 5 to 8 foot lengths for a pet containment fence, perimeter fence or privacy fence. When comparative shopping for steel posts, be sure you are comparing apples to apples. Steel posts come in a wide variety of quality levels, styles and prices.
Advantages of Steel Fence Posts
The first advantage steel posts have over the standard wooden 4×4 or 6×6 is cost. They are less expensive to purchase and install, and if they should bend, they can usually be bent back into place. They can be economically replaced if they are damaged beyond repair. Steel posts are the perfect choice for fences that must be strong and durable. If extra support is required, wooden line posts can be installed about 6 feet apart for extra protection against bending and to make the fence even sturdier.
A Houston fence company is likely to recommend using steel fence posts because they do not rot. However, it is important to only use galvanized steel posts that have been chemically treated to resist rust. A galvanized post will outlast a treated wood post by a wide margin. After years of being exposed to the extremes of winter weather and intense summer sunshine, wood posts are likely to dry out, rot and break. Steel posts will not be affected by strong winds and the extremes of Texas weather. They are also fireproof, and they will ground the fence against lightning strikes when the soil is wet by acting as a lightning rod.
Steel posts on a fence in Cypress TX are immune to attacks by termites. They also will not suffer if they get hit repeatedly by a weed whacker when you are trimming the lawn. Steel fence posts are easier to maintain than wooden posts, and they can be painted to match the rest of the fence.
Disadvantages of Steel Fence Posts
If you feel that steel fence posts are not attractive, the posts can easily be hidden behind a wooden facade made with 2×4 boards. By concealing the steel posts, they will not detract from the natural appearance of the fence. You can find large post brackets that have extra long tabs to hide the steel posts. Since the wooden facade is above ground, it is less likely to rot and suffer from wood-specific problems.
If you would like to convert a chain-link fence into a picket or privacy fence, your existing steel posts can sometimes be used in the new design. However, if you are considering pre-fabricated panels, the spacing might not work. If you need to install additional supports between the existing steel posts, the project may not produce the desired cost savings. You may also need to remove the existing posts if you want to build a taller fence.
Wooden fences are attractive, but if you want your wood fence to be durable, strong and long-lasting, it is a good idea to use steel posts during the installation. In most cases, you can maintain the looks of the wood fence and achieve additional strength by using steel posts. The built-in advantages and the competitive cost make steel posts an excellent choice for residential picket fences, privacy fences or security fences.