Fence Installation FAQs

Frequently Asked Fencing Questions

Do you have questions about fencing and fence installation? We put together these Fence Installation FAQs to help you better understand the sales and installation process.

Can you keep the top of the fence level?

Level and straight are not the same thing. We prefer to follow the ground contour, keeping the top of the fence as straight as the terrain will allow. It looks best installed that way. If you prefer level the panels can be stepped.

Do I need a fence permit?

Every municipality has its own Building Code. You are responsible for making sure that the proposed fence complies with the local Building Code. You are also responsible for obtaining fence building permits and any applicable permit fees.

Do I have to be home during my fence installation?

We insist that you meet with our foreman before we begin work and remain easily accessible for the duration of the fence installation, preferably on site. Issues will arise during fence installation, they always do. You will make the best decision if you can see the problem.

What is a Rock Charge?

Post depth is critical to wood fences. Shallow posts will cause the fence to lean, which looks awful and can be dangerous. Our pricing assumes that our augers can dig to the required depth with minimal hand digging. If our crew has a problem digging, the foreman will stop immediately and show you the problem. Any extra charge must be agreed to before the extra labor is begun.

Do you concrete the fence posts?

Fence gateposts can require the added strength of a concrete footer; however, placing a wooden post in a concrete footer will trap moisture by restricting drainage and the post rots at ground level. We tamp alternating layers of backfill and dry concrete mix. The result is a tight footer around the post that will allow drainage.

How high can the fence be?

Generally, the municipalities in this area limit the height of residential fences to 6’ high in the back of the house and 4’ high in the front. Our fencing estimator will recommend that you check with the local Zoning Department if he suspects a problem. We are not responsible for zoning violations.

Can the fence curve?

If your fence line bends, the sections can easily be angled in the posts to follow most curves. For a very tight curve, just cut the sections in half and put another post between the two sections. The sections themselves cannot be bent without ruining their structural integrity however.

Can the fence follow a downhill slope?

Most of our standard aluminum fence sections can follow the contour of the ground. This is called either raking or racking. The fences drop about one foot over the 6′ length of a section. If a greater slope is needed, sections can be specially fabricated as “double-punched sections” to traverse a 45 degree angle. Not all style can be raked so stepping is required. See diagram of Rake & Step.

Can the fence attach to brick columns or the side of my house?

Yes, we have wall mount castings that allow the fence sections to connect to any flat surface. These fit over the ends of the rails and attach to the flat surface with two screws. We also have adjustable wall mounts if you need to come off the flat surface at an angle up to 45 degrees.

Can the fence mount on a patio/deck?

To fasten a post onto a concrete slab, we recommend that you core-drill the concrete if at all possible. We do offer deck mount castings, however, they should not be used on fences over 48″ tall.

Can I use these products as railings?

NO! Our fences are not designed to be used as railings and we will not warrant their use as a railing.

Are fence sections & gates assembled?

All fence sections & gates are shipped assembled. Certain styles require finials and/or loops to be installed in the field during fence installation. We can send sections broken down for UPS shipping for an additional charge of $ 10.00 per section plus the normal UPS charges. Gates always ship by freight and cannot be broken down for field assembly.

How tall is the actual fence?

Except where it is noted, the fence height is the actual length of the pickets. The post usually extends an inch or so above the pickets.

Are latches and hinges included with the fence gates?

Self-closing and self-latching hardware are included in the fence gate prices, except for the Estate Gate prices which only include hinges. Gates over 60″ wide are not guaranteed to self close due to the size.

What size gate opening do I need for my gates if they are mounted on wood or aluminum posts?

Our swing gates are sold by their opening size, so a 48” gate fits into a 48” opening between posts. The gates will hang flush with the face of the hinge post and latch onto the face of the opposite post.

How do I make a double-drive gate?

Any two gates can be combined to make a double drive gate. When you need a double drive gate, notify our Customer Service Department and we will supply two drop rod assemblies at no charge for fence installation. Double gates are also made to fit a given opening size, so a 12’ double drive gate will fit inside a 12’ opening.

Do I need gate posts on both sides of a gate?

Yes, heavier posts are needed to both support the weight of the gate and to withstand the constant impact when the gate latches.

How do I attach the fence to the deck around a pool?

To fasten posts to a concrete slab, we always recommend that you core drill the concrete. If this is not feasible, then you may be able to use our deck mounts. These aluminum castings fit inside the bottom of a post and secure it. Since deck mounts fit inside posts, fence styles with bottom rails may not work properly since the rails will be in the way.

You must supply four stainless steel bolts to attach the deck mount to the concrete itself. DO NOT USE DECK MOUNTS ON FENCES TALLER THAN 4’ HIGH OR FOR GATE POSTS! THEY WILL FAIL!