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The winter time is taxing on all exterior home features, from siding to fencing to brick work and beyond. The weight and changing consistence of melting ice and snow can do damage to even the strongest of materials. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to reduce these effects and keep your property looking its best. Here are six tips for winter fence maintenance.
1 – Cut Back Overhanging Limbs
If you have tree limbs that hang over your fencing, trim them back before the snow and ice comes. The limbs will bring a higher volume of water to the fence line, which could lead to a thick buildup of ice. The limbs themselves will also get heavy with the presence of snow, which could cause them to break off and damage your fencing. If you proactively trim them ahead of time, none of this will be an issue.
2 – Do Not Let Leaves Pile up around the Fence
If you have some leftover leaves from the fall, you may be tempted just to brush them to the fence edge. The leaves may pile up there on their own because of the wind. If these piles are left uncared for before winter, they could damage your fencing in the cold months. The leaves lock moisture in around your fence, which could cause the posts to warp or rust (in the case of metal fencing). They could also become a home for unwanted critters looking for a warm place to hide.
As we discussed in a previous fence maintenance guide, try to take care of leaf piles as they form. Once the autumn comes to a close, you won’t have to worry about them anymore.
3 – Rake and Shovel Snow Drifts for Winter Fence Maintenance
If a pile of snow starts to form around your fence, use a rake or shovel to move it away from the edge of your property. You do not have to get rid of the snow entirely because it will melt on its own. Your goal is to get the tall drift away from the fencing so the fence itself has time to dry and adjust. It’s a little extra work that will go a long way in your winter fence maintenance.
4 – Avoid Attaching Things to Your Fence
Some people treat their privacy fence as a long wall to store yard equipment, ladders, sleds, pool toys and more. If you leave these items on the fence during the winter, snow and ice will pile on top of them. This is just as damaging as a pile of leaves on the bottom of the fence. If possible, move those items to the shed or garage until the weather gets warmer again.
5 – Complete Fence Repairs as Quickly as Possible
The winter months can turn small fence damage into major fence damage. If the posts are weakened, they may not be able to handle the expansion/contraction that comes with melting snow. Take care of any fence repairs you need to make as soon as possible so your fence is strong enough for winter.
6 – Clean Your Fence When Winter Ends
When the snow melts away, your fence may look a little dull and dirty. Most fencing can be cleaned with water alone or with a simple soap solution. If you want to get your wood fence stained, you may ask the fence installation company to bundle cleaning in with your service. As long as you follow good fence maintenance practices, your fencing will look great for years to come.
For answers to more vinyl fencing questions, contact All Around Fence, LLC today.
See Related Blog Post:
Protect your wood fencing this winter