This article may contain affiliate links. We get paid a small commission from your purchases. More Affiliate Policy
While a picture is worth a thousand words, looking through 50 pictures of privacy fence options won’t get your wooden fence done.
Wooden picket fences have come a long way, and incorporating metal, cedarwood, bamboo, or a basket weave fence can help you set your boundaries beautifully. Metal posts and a metal frame create an elegant feel, and a raw timber rail fence can enhance a rustic feel.
Table of Contents
- Wood Fence Considerations
- Wood Fence Styles to Consider
- Wood Choices for DIY wood fence Projects
- Fitting a Wood Fence Gate
- In Closing
Wood Fence Considerations
A wood fence is an excellent option to keep your dogs in the yard, keep prying eyes out of your backyard, or create a safe play area for your kids.
Installing one can help you create a sense of safety, increase your home’s resale value, and improve your home’s curb appeal. However, purchasing a wooden fence is a significant financial and time commitment that must be meticulously planned.
Before beginning construction on a wooden fence around your property, you must consider all the factors involved, including the cost, the time commitment, and even your neighbor’s opinion. This is especially important if it’s a shared wooden fence.
Let’s explore some of the wood fence considerations in some detail.
Researching Wood Fences
While, in some regards, it would be great to create a wood fence without having to consider others, the idea of free autonomy is less appealing when your neighbor decides to build a monstrosity on your doorstep.
Some rules and regulations restrict the materials you can use, the height of your wood fence, where you can position it, and its appearance to prevent that from happening. No, you can’t create a wood fence and paint it with glow-in-the-dark luminous pink. Dang!
These restrictions may be the domain of the local authority, municipality, governing body, or homeowners association. Before you make any investments, start by finding out what you can and cannot consider doing. I know it’s a pain, but the rules are there to protect you too.
A privacy fence in residential areas is typically prohibited or limited to a height of six feet in the backyard and four feet in the front.
Cities and counties have laws about fencing, and sometimes subdivisions have rules called Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&Rs) that govern fencing.
Consider Your Neighbors
The American poet Robert Frost once wrote, “Good fences make good neighbors.” The wise Benjamin Franklin rephrased that to “Love your neighbor, yet don’t pull down your hedge.”
Boundaries are often shared, and the investment can be mutual. Some states even require shared privacy fences to be paid for and maintained equally by both parties using the fence. The courts can decide what use means.
If your neighbors like wood fences, they may want to share the design and payment for the shared fixed asset. Do they prefer a privacy fence, horizontal rails, wrought iron, or total privacy?
To save yourself and future owners years in court, ensure there are no arguments about property lines.
Again. Ensure you know the regulations in your area and get some approval before you begin. If you violate the CC&Rs, neighbors can rightfully force you to change or take down the wood fence you’ve erected.
Know What’s Below. Call Before You Dig
At least two weeks before your scheduled workday, call the Call Before You Dig hotline (8-1-1) to avoid any of the marked subsurface gas, electrical, water, or communication lines.
You will need to dig some ground for pillars, especially corner anchor poles and gates, so know what’s below by calling the hotline for your county.
Plan Your Fence
Wooden fences can serve several purposes, and different types can be used in different areas. Areas, where children will play need you to see them, so a picket fence is a good option.
The same goes for animals (though, if you have a young (<3 years) labby, you may want to put it where it can’t dig out). I’ve listed some privacy fence ideas below if you need some privacy.
I’ve given you some excellent wood fence ideas below, whether it’s a privacy fence or a backyard feature, or maybe a patio area.
Wood Fence Styles to Consider
Several material options can be included to enhance your communal wood fence or backyard privacy fence. Below is a list of eight options; your finishing touches will set your property apart.
Wooden Fence with Wrought Iron
Wrought iron, also known as cast iron, is a carbon-rich metal that allows it to be cast into shapes. Lion’s heads, fish mouths with water features, mermaids, flowers, and ornate spikes are common cast iron shapes that allow you to incorporate elegant features.
A typical wood fence was either a picket fence or a paddock fence for fields and animals. Today there are as many fence ideas as the imagination will allow. Incorporating metal into designs extends what can be done.
Wooden Fence with Wood Carvings
Wood panels can be accentuated by incorporating wood carvings or raw wood engravings offset against the wood panels. You may want to include your family coat of arms or interchangeable quotes.
Add-on features like carving, or engravings work better with solid wood fences, ensure privacy, and delineate different areas.
Wooden Fence and Lattice
I’ve seen several wood fence ideas where lattice slats have been used to create a diamond mesh for climbing plants. This works well for wooden fences around a patio as a windbreak on one side.
Horizontal rails offset from the wooden fence also allows you to incorporate hanging baskets or vertical garden bags.
Wood Fence on a Brick Retaining Wall
Laying a foundation and building a low retaining wall. Ideally, a dark-finished face-brick will cost a bit more in the short term but save you thousands in the long term. Your garden soil is alive with billions of microorganisms with one goal in mind, decomposing organic matter.
Even if treated, a wood fence that rests directly on the ground will eventually decay. It might take years, but it’s inevitable. A low wall, or even a raised foundation, can extend the life of your wood fence for decades.
Wood Fence and Steel Frame
Of all the wood fence ideas, this is my favorite. The steel can be painted in various colors and combined with thin redwood slats and wider cedar wood slats to create an exquisite feature.
Spacing them apart and allowing air to move through can create a great outdoor space. You can use this wood fence option to demarcate space in your backyard.
The color of the cedar next to the redwood can be a great landscaping feature. Contrast these colors on the frame to add depth. If this is a DIY project, avoid getting pain on the wood.
Wood Fence and Corrugated Iron
A wood fence incorporating corrugated iron and matching raised beds of a similar style is fast becoming popular. A frame all around eliminates edges that may be a danger.
On the other hand, leaving the top edge exposed is a sure deterrent for unwanted intruders. Several different types of corrugated sheets are available, and they’re a great way to create a horizontal privacy fence for your house.
If you’re creating a rustic look, I’ve seen rusted sheets used. Consider the light implications of using a reflective material in your garden site. A finishing touch may include putting a coat of paint on a potential DIY project.
Corrugated sheets are best installed on windless days. Wear gloves when installing metal sheets, as the edge can be razor-sharp.
Wooden Picket Fence
The holder of all the wood fence ideas, the picket fence has been the symbol of urban life for almost a century. The advantage of pickets is that they allow you to see beyond them, something to consider if you’ve got a pool in your backyard – for children’s safety.
There is an argument for and against fences in front of a house. Pickets can frame your property while allowing your neighbors to monitor unwanted visitors, something a high wooden fence won’t.
Including pickets with spiky plants or narrow trees can protect without blocking neighborly monitoring. Pickets are also low maintenance, allowing you to include different plants.
Wood Choices for DIY wood fence Projects
Wooden fencing can have a significant effect on a property. That’s why it’s so important to pick the proper wood carefully. Before placing an order for fencing wood, consider the following options.
Cedar fencing is a great option for those on a medium budget. The wood is excellent for fencing and other home improvement projects but not raised beds.
Cedar oil is an insecticide and will kill essential soil organisms. For a wooden fence, there’s nothing durable and cost-effective,
In addition to its durability, it’s an attractive wood ideal for privacy fences. Still, a cedar privacy fence can be stained or painted if you want a change.
Privacy fence ideas that include a metal framework great with cedar wood.
The pine tree is a natural species in the Americas. It is among the most straightforward woods to work with for privacy fences, as it’s a softwood. It can warp, but if effectively dried and treated can make a relatively durable privacy fence.
Pine treated under pressure is impervious to the effects of water, insects, and climate variables and is the top choice for installing fence posts into the ground. It’s what most pickets are made of.
Because pine wood is soft, it’s excellent for basket weave fences, another one of my favorite privacy fence ideas. A basket weave fence is made by interlacing horizontal boards with vertical boards.
In the same vein as cedar, cypress makes an excellent material for a privacy fence. The wood is well-liked because it resists rot, extending the durability of a privacy fence.
The natural chemical oil found in cypress makes it resistant to insect attacks. For this reason, a privacy fence constructed from this wood will last many years.
Cypress wood is stunning and gives off a lovely aroma; wood staining can extend the wood’s natural attractiveness. If you want to protect your new privacy fence, this is better than using paint.
Once the wood has been stained, you’ll need to decide on a final color. Leaving it on for longer can give your cypress privacy fence a deeper color.
Redwood is one of the most well-liked and effective types of wood for fencing in the United States, but its rarity and slow production makes it very expensive.
The durability and weather resistance that redwood possesses are primarily responsible for its widespread popularity. In addition to its resistance to fire, redwood is also impervious to insect infestation.
The redwood also stands out due to its distinct appearance and high curb appeal. There is a price to pay for such a distinctive appearance, though. Building a privacy fence entirely out of redwood will require a substantial investment.
Douglas Fir Wood
Both rot and insect resistance are areas where the Douglas fir stands out as exceptional. This means a privacy fence constructed from this wood will provide years of service.
The Douglas fir’s aesthetic value is another plus, allowing you to erect a one-of-a-kind privacy fence. Many of the remaining historical homes were constructed using Douglas fir wood.
Because it contains so few knots, the wood maintains its shape well over time. Moisture exposure causes no expansion, and Douglas fir privacy fences typically don’t buckle or warp.
When compared to other woods, Douglas fir also has higher rot resistance. It makes excellent building materials with a 15-year guaranteed lifespan and gathering from historical artifacts.
Treated wood fence boards are ideal for privacy fences and can last well past 50 years.
Fitting a Wood Fence Gate
When fitting a wood fence gate, ensure the gate is square and sturdy. A square angled construction is best achieved using a 3-4-5 Pythagoras formula, with the square sides of the triangle respectively 3 and 4 feet, and the diagonal line 5 feet.
Install the gate on anchored pillars, and cover it with angled slats to further strengthen the frame. Ensure adequate space between the gates or gate and pillar to fit a latch or lock.
Whether your privacy fence is a DIY project for the backyard or you’re considering getting a professional to do the job, a privacy fence adds beauty and value to your yard.
Wood allows you to create a rustic feel, a country feel, or an elegant patio space in your yard. With some added slats, rails, or narrow trees, creating a space to be proud of is within your reach.