What To Keep In Mind Before Installing An Aluminum Fence

S4_residential_estate_displayInstalling an aluminum fence is surprisingly doable on your own. Just keep these tips in mind before you get started to avoid disappointment later!

Whether you are very handy or just starting your first do-it-yourself project, installing a fence has some extra factors that are important to know. These include things like watching out for underground utility lines, checking zoning laws and other factors that you might not need to worry about if you were just doing a quick DIY inside your home. The following tips will help you cover your bases before you begin installing a residential, commercial or industrial fence.

Call a professional

Even though you will be installing the fence yourself, it’s always a good idea to call the fence company before or during your purchase. A professional can answer any questions you might have and run through a checklist of things you should know before beginning your digging. Calling the company where you purchased the fence is very helpful if it is your first foray into DIY-ing. This is especially true if it is a commercial or industrial fence because of its larger size. After all, you won’t want to have to dig up those fence posts and start all over!

Check your perimeter

Utility lines and pipes are present under your front and back yard in places you might not even realize! It’s best to check either your records or with the utility company to determine the exact location of these lines and pipes. While you won’t want to start digging and break a very important pile with your shovel, you also won’t want to put your fence right on top of deeper pipes. Just imagine having to redo your whole fence if there ever happen to be any plumbing issues!

Research the law

There are a few boxes you need to tick when it comes to following all of the rules and regulations surrounding putting up a new fence. You first need to check with your town’s building codes or homeowner’s association if there are any specific rules on the height of your fence. They may also have certain rules regarding pool fences. All of these rules and laws exist to keep you and your neighborhood safe and looking up to a particular standard. You will also want to check your home’s blueprints and speak with your neighbors or the city council to ensure you are only putting a fence on your own property and not the neighboring lots.

Plan it out

By now, you most likely have an idea of how you want your fence laid out around your property. To avoid any disappointments after the fence has already been installed, first try to put up a makeshift barrier to get an overall picture of how the area will look fenced off. You can do this by putting up thin poles and tying string or rope between them. This is especially important around corners or if there is a particular area of the yard or property that does not turn at a ninety-degree angle or has to go around an odd corner or hill.

By preparing and planning everything right from the start, you should end up with an amazing DIY fence experience. Just be sure to cover all of your bases and check that you are following all rules and regulations regarding your fence. If you have any questions, just ask a fence professional to ensure you are purchasing the right fence for the job.

Added Protection For Your Company

Metal Security FencingIf your company’s property needs an extra layer of protection, consider some of the many fencing options that are available.

Safety and security are rightfully among the top concerns of property owners. Depending on your company’s needs, a strong fence with options for extra protection might be in order. First you will need to choose a type of fence to surround your property. There are many different materials to choose from, but one of the longest lasting and most cost-effective options is to get a fence made of aluminum.

Aluminum fencing comes with a special powder coating that helps the fence stay in pristine condition for much longer than wood or chain link fences. Aluminum fencing is also rustproof and weatherproof. Minimal upkeep is required for aluminum fences, which is what make it such an attractive choice, especially for larger properties where upkeep would be time-consuming and costly. Aluminum fencing is also a great choice if you are taking on erecting the fence yourself because it is a reasonably simple DIY project.

Extra-strong aluminum

Once you have made the choice to purchase an aluminum fence, you will need to decide which grade of fence is right for you. There are a few different options for the strength of the fence, such as residential, industrial or commercial. When it comes to protecting a larger building or area, commercial or industrial fencing is usually the best choice. This is because these fences are beefier with larger pickets, larger rails and thicker material than residential fencing and are made with large properties in mind. If you are having trouble deciding between commercial and industrial fencing, a fence specialist will be able to give you advice based on the specific needs of your company.

Added layers of privacy

Now that you have decided between industrial and commercial fencing, it is time to think about options for extra protection and security. One popular option is privacy fence panels, which essentially make a wall straight across the area being fenced in. This is great for areas that you want to keep hidden, such as dumpsters or other unsightly storage. Privacy fence panels are also popularly used as an extra layer of privacy because they make it difficult to see anything on the property from the road or sidewalk.

Another added privacy option for commercial and industrial fencing is expanded metal or mesh. The mesh is for the empty spaces in between the aluminum fence panels. It is a popular choice for gates and entryways in particular. This is because you may want to be able to see what is right behind a gate as you open it. Unlike privacy fence panels, mesh allows a visible sight line but still leaves no room for people or anything to enter through any empty spaces between panels.

When it comes to the gates keeping your property safe and secure, it is also important to find a tough lock. There are plenty of options when it comes to locks, including ones that have self-locking capabilities and added locking mechanisms for extreme security.

Various protective additions to your fence help deter any unfortunate incidents from happening, such as burglaries or unwanted visitors in general. If your property requires extra security, consider these aluminum fencing options to ease your mind.

Lock It Up

Aluminum-fence-around-poolIf you need to secure your pool, a lockable aluminum fence will do the job, but make sure to follow your town’s fencing rules to keep everyone safe.

Securing your pool to ensure your yard is a safe place is a top concern for pool owners. This may be especially true for those who have small children or pets, but it should also be true for anyone who lives in a neighborhood where children play. Even if you believe nobody could just wander onto your property, you still need to ensure your pool is fenced off for safety and liability purposes.

Perhaps your pool is new or you have just moved into a house that came with a stunning pool. It is now your responsibility to work out the best way to secure the area. Doing a DIY pool fence is a popular option because it really is easier than you think to erect an aluminum fence. Something that you absolutely must put some extra thought into when putting up your own pool fence is what type of lock you will use on the pool fence gate.

Rules and Regulations

Your town, city or municipality will most likely have specific rules and regulations regarding how to enclose your pool area. These types of laws are in place to help protect people in the neighborhood—including your family—from accidents around pools. These laws often specify the height of the fence, the spacing between the panels, and what type of lock to use to secure the gate.

Securing the gate with a lock can be accomplished in a few different ways, with different types of safety levels. There are self-latching locks that help stop people from accidentally leaving an unattended pool area unlocked. There are locks with extra safety measures, including types where you have to push a button and then lift a knob simultaneously. This is reminiscent of those childproof pill bottles that prevent young children’s hands from accessing something that could be dangerous to them.

Do your part in the upkeep

Once you have chosen a lock that is appropriate for your town’s regulations on pool enclosures, you will want to double and triple check that you have installed it correctly. Test it out several times with other adults to ensure it is easily opened and not faulty in any way. Try opening it from both sides of the pool—inside and outside of the fenced area—to ensure safety from both sides.

Next you’ll want to be sure to keep up-to-date on checking that the lock’s mechanisms are working properly each pool season. If any part of it begins to rust or the coatings on it seem to be wearing off, fix it right away. Remember, gates and locks are put under more pressure and much more use than the rest of your fence, so they need a bit more TLC. If the lock is often splashed by chlorinated water, rinse it with regular water and a little soap from time to time.

When creating a DIY pool fence enclosure, it might be enticing to save money with a cheaper, less intricate lock. Keep in mind that safety is the number one priority for this purchase, so skimping just to save a few bucks may come with dire consequences if your lock is not up to code. Getting a good quality lock to match your excellent quality aluminum fence right from the start will help ensure your pool is safe for everyone around.

Don’t Be Out Of Bounds

Spear Top Metal FencingIf you aren’t careful, you could have extra expenses when it comes to installing a new fence. Have your boundaries checked the right way from the start.

If you want to build a new fence, there is one important step you must take before doing anything else. Before you even begin ordering your new fence, you will want to check the boundary lines of your property. You might think you know exactly where your property begins and ends. You might even have blueprints of your property that clearly show your property lines. Even with this information, having a professional survey your land can help you to be completely certain where you should erect your new fence.

Erecting a new aluminum fence will come with plenty of costs. Even though the aluminum fence cost is low compared to the more expensive wrought iron varieties, you will not want to have to take down and re-install a fence just because you did not have the right information about where your property lines were meant to be.

The neighborly thing to do

When you are planning to install a new fence at your residential property, you will probably share at least one side of your property with a neighbor. When this happens, you will want to discuss your new plans with your neighbor and see what their ideas are about your property boundary lines. Often two properties will have had changing boundary lines at some point in their history, with one or either party not being aware of the changes or having outdated information. Therefore, your neighbor might even be interested in sharing the cost of getting the land surveyed as they could also use this information for their own home’s value and any outdoor landscaping or to help with their own future aluminum fence cost.

Being a good citizen

When you don’t have a neighbor sharing a property boundary with you, there may be another type of land owner to contend with: the local government. If your property lies next to a public park, a school or other government-owned property, you may have extra zoning or survey laws to check. This will help you in the long run as you will not only be a good citizen by taking the necessary steps to keep your house and yard up to standards and follow the laws of the land; you will also keep future costs down should you or the neighboring land need to move the fence at some point. Getting all the information about where your property starts and theirs ends and checking for any extra zoning laws before even beginning to pick out your fence can only help you.

The added layer of homeowners’ associations

If you also have a homeowners’ association where you live, you’re probably already aware of the extra layer of rules you must check before changing your property. This added layer won’t add anything to your aluminum fence cost as the fence will still be the same size to fit around your property. In fact, you just need to follow the same steps that apply if your property boundaries are close to government-owned property: double-check where the property is and follow any additional rules set forth by the governing body. You will be glad you covered all of your bases when you put in the order for your new fence as you will be certain you made the right choice and that there will be no unpleasant surprises in the future.

Choosing the Right Driveway Gate For You

GreatFence.com Aluminum Double Swing Gate AutomatedWith so many design option, it’s hard to choose the perfect driveway gate for your home. Narrow down the choices to find what suits you and your home best.

It is said that first impressions are everything, right? When it comes to your house, the entryway to your driveway is the first thing people will come across. Therefore, you want to have the best driveway gate that represents you, your family and your home perfectly. There is an endless amount of choices when it comes to creating a driveway gate, with different selections of materials, colors, designs, and sizes.

Material

The type of material you choose can depend on a few factors, including your price range and the type of fence you have or plan to get. When choosing a fence material, you will want to remember that you don’t always have to match the material to your driveway gate. Some materials create a desirable look, such as quaint stone fences with aluminum driveway gates. If you are more interested in matching your fence and your driveway gate, aluminum is the best you can get for the price. Aluminum is less expensive than wrought iron and equally as attractive. It is durable, light, and completely rust and weather proof thanks to powerful powder coatings. Aluminum driveway gates are a great choice as the entryway to your home, especially if the driveway must be accessed quite often. Aluminum will stand up well to frequent opening and closing of the gate.

Size and Design

Next, you really need to think about what size you want for your driveway gate. You will want a gate that reaches across the entire driveway as this is best for security, look and functionality. However, you will also want to decide how tall it will be because there are a few different looks you can go for here. Tall driveway gates work best with multiple story homes and give a grand look to the property. Tall gates also work well for long driveways as the long lines of the driveway are complementary to the tall lines of the fence.

Another aspect to think about is whether you want a dual gate that has two sides that swing out or slide out of the way, or one large panel that swings to one side or the other. It might seem like there are so many choices when it comes to size and how it opens, but a lot of this choice will depend on how much room you have at the driveway’s entry. Thankfully, aluminum is quite light for how durable it is. If you go with aluminum driveway gates, you don’t have to worry about having a large fence panel that is too heavy to swing open!

There are so many ways you can design and color your driveway gate. You can choose a contrasting color to the fence to help it stand out, or choose more classic colors to help it blend in. When it comes to the design, many people choose to personalize their driveway gate with something that represents their family or the area where they live. As you can see, the sky is the limit when it comes to choosing a driveway gate. With so many choices, you are sure to find something that suits you perfectly.

Touch Up Scratches With Ease

Racking_Fence_Panels_Hills_SlopesIf you’ve accidentally created a few scratches in your aluminum fence, don’t worry. It’s nothing a little bit of touch-up paint can’t fix.

What if someone was a little careless near your home’s shiny aluminum fence and now there are some unfortunate scratches on some of the fence panels? Don’t worry; it’s easy to fix. The key is to not wait too long to touch up the fence. If you have an aluminum fence, you must know how high-quality it is and looks. Having unsightly marks can detract from the new look of the fence. Moreover, having a scratch in the coatings of the fence can open it up to moisture and chemicals being able to reach past the protective outside layers.

The skin of the fence

Think of the fence as having skin just like you. Like your skin, your fence can get a bit banged up from time to time. One common way an aluminum pool fence can get scratched is when someone is cleaning the pool with a long net. If the person cleaning isn’t careful, the length of the pole can hit into the pool fence panels, leaving unsightly marks.

Unlike our skin, a scratched fence can’t repair itself. That’s where you come in with only a can of touch-up spray paint. Whether it is your pool fence that needs some TLC or perhaps your lawnmower got a bit too close to the fence in your yard, touch-up paint should be enough to get the job done.

One last place you may wish to touch up from time to time is around any key locks or hinges. The keys slipping and the hinges opening and closing constantly could mean that these two places may have a bit more wear and tear than the rest of the fence.

Don’t let anyone dull your shine

Scratches can cut into the powder coating and affect the general look of the fence, but what about a dull, tired fence? It takes quite a while for aluminum fences and aluminum pool fences to begin looking dull, but some sections of your fence might be more susceptible than others. Those areas that are constantly getting sprayed with salt from the ocean or whipped with wind can begin to look a bit more worn than others. Areas of the fence that might be near a road that is often salted in the winter can start looking a bit less shiny over time.

One other place to keep an eye on is the interior side of an aluminum pool fence closest to the pool because it is often sprayed with water containing chemicals such as chlorine. Aluminum fences can withstand salt and pool chlorine spray wear and tear, but after years of exposure without being cleaned from time to time, these areas may require a touch-up with a matching spray paint made specifically for aluminum fences.

Scratches and wear and tear are expected with anything that sits outdoors. This is especially true if you live in a location with extreme weather conditions, but don’t let a little wear and tear keep you from enjoying an aluminum fence. The touch-ups and upkeep of other fences such as wooden or chain link fences is far more time-consuming and costly. Being careful near your fence with large objects that can scratch it is recommended, but accidents happen. Thankfully, there is an easy solution for touching up your fence so you can rest easy knowing your fence will continue to do its job for a long time to come.

To Replace Or Repair, That Is The Question

black_matte_aluminum_fence_2014The decision to replace or repair your old fence may be hard, but looking at a few different factors will help you make the right choice.

There are many reasons you may be looking to get a new fence. You might be getting ready to sell your home and you want to raise the value a bit, or perhaps your old fence is looking tired and you think a refresh is in order after so many years. Maybe you just moved into a new house that came with an old fence, and it’s the first thing on your home repair to-do list.

Whatever the reason, deciding how to proceed can seem daunting, as the decision is something that you must live with for quite a while. This is especially true for fences made of aluminum. These are very high in quality and will last for years to come, with very little upkeep involved.

It’s not forever

Now you might be wondering if replacing your old chain link or wooden fence with aluminum is the right thing to do. What if your aluminum fence still looks good as new after a few years but you’re ready for another look? Remember that no design choice is forever. Aluminum fences are strong and sturdy, but they can also be replaced any time you choose.

If you make the decision to replace your current fence with an aluminum fence, the low maintenance and durability will be so apparent that you won’t want to switch it with anything else. Fences made of aluminum last so long because of their tough metal material and outer coatings that help them last through any weather. The decision about whether to replace your current fence or not can actually come down to where you live. If you live in a climate with weather extremes, from incredibly dry and hot to wet and cold, having a material that will stand up to the tough elements is vital.

Decisions, decisions

The choice to repair or replace often comes down to cost. If you have a decent fence that just needs minor repairs and you don’t live in an extreme weather zone, repairing might be better for you. Aluminum fences are a great deal for the fantastic product you get, but they won’t be as inexpensive as repairing another fence.

When considering the different costs, you have to keep the future in mind. If you are going to have to make the same or similar repairs every year and replace your entire old wooden fence in the near future, perhaps it’s more cost effective to splurge now. You’ll have less hassle and minimal maintenance. Moreover, aluminum fences come in so many different styles and designs that you can really personalize the fence to make it perfect for your home.

Resale value also plays a factor in any upgrades or repairs you are planning for your house. Having a shiny new fence is preferable to potential buyers over a fence that needs frequent repairs. If you or someone in your family is quite handy and enjoys home repairs and cost is a big factor for you in the short term, perhaps a good old-fashioned DIY is in your future. However, if you stop and think a bit about the long-term cost and hassle, replacing your fence now instead of waiting might be the best choice for you.

Aluminum: More Than Just Another Metal

s2_khaki_closeThere is more to a fence than the material it is made of, but consumers often incorrectly judge a material without considering all the information.

Aluminum is often compared to wrought iron, and many people automatically jump to the conclusion that aluminum is the inferior metal choice. However, the topic of which metal is better is not quite so black and white. There are a lot of reasons that aluminum is falsely perceived to be inferior, one of which is the comparison to aluminum cans. Cans are purposely built thin and flimsy so they do their job but are easily recyclable, leading to less waste. The fact that aluminum can be thinned out so well shows how strong of a material it is. Would you want metal fencing panels protecting your home that were made of a material that would shatter when pounded out into a different shape? If you are like most people, you’d want a metal that is durable no matter how it is laid out.

Durability is most important

When it comes to a durable fence, you cannot get much better than wrought iron or aluminum. Both materials stand up to extreme weather conditions with ease. They are also made to last quite a long time, with minimal wear and tear. Aluminum has a leg up on wrought iron in the sense that aluminum fencing is treated to be completely rust-proof. Wrought iron will not rust away after just one rainy season, but it is something to keep in mind. Many people choose iron so they can have the antique green-like patina finish that is currently in fashion. However, when thinking practically about what is best for the longevity and durability of a fence, you should choose one that will stay in the same shape as the day you bought it.

Heavyweight champion

Aluminum has another leg up on wrought iron thanks to its ease of installation. Not only is the product itself and its delivery less costly, but you also have a better chance of being able to do it yourself! Wrought iron is quite heavy and very cumbersome to install without professional help. That can get expensive, and you also have less say over how things are done. If you are taking control of your fence building and want a product and material that you can maneuver with ease but will withstand time, weather and rust, aluminum is the clear choice.

Is aluminum just an inferior metal to wrought iron?

Wrought iron is not superior or inferior to aluminum when it comes to metal fencing panels. Both are wonderful choices for a protective barrier around your property. Some people just assume aluminum is inferior because its price is lower than that of iron. Iron is strong and sturdy and most often seen in large, intricate fences surrounding commercial properties or larger, expensive homes. Nevertheless, aluminum can be just as large and in charge, especially when you use industrial-style aluminum fencing to create a fence with more girth and strength.

The question should not be about which metal is sturdier but which one better fits your needs. If you want a strong, sturdy, weatherproof and rustproof fence but don’t want to break the bank, an aluminum fence fits the bill.

Let’s Talk Fencing Costs

s1_black_satin_rings_cold_new_york_virginThere are many pros and cons to consider when choosing a fence material. Understandably, cost is definitely high up on the list of deciding factors.

You may have already made up the decision on what type of material to use for your new fence. Most people go one of two ways: wooden and light, such as a classic white picket fence, or metal and sturdy, such as an elegant black aluminum fence. Each fencing material has its pros and its cons. For example, aluminum is more durable than wood, while iron is more solid and sturdy than a chain-link fence. Many people ultimately base their decision on multiple factors, with cost being a major determinant.

Spending now to save later

Certain big-ticket items that you must purchase in life can be considered investments. Expenses such as paying for college, purchasing a house instead of renting, and even putting money into a retirement fund are all ways we spend some money now to have more savings later. This way of thinking ahead when spending a large sum of money can come in handy when choosing what type of fence to put up in your front or back yard.

Not all materials are created equal, and not all materials stay in perfect condition throughout the different seasons and weather conditions. Spending a little more for a new black aluminum fence instead of just painting an old wooden fence black will be much more beneficial later on in life. An aluminum fence is built to last, through extreme weather, dust, debris, wind—you name it! You can choose bold colors and designs and really personalize it however you want. Even though this option costs more now, you will not have to replace it as quickly as you would with any other material—even wrought iron.

Is it worth it?

Although a cheaper material might seem like the way to go when trying to put up a fence without breaking the bank, you really need to do your research to see if you are making the right choice for the long run. Just painting an old fence to a color you desire might seem like a good way to save money while giving your property a face lift, but it might actually be detrimental in the future.

For example, choosing a vinyl fence may be the right choice for you for now and the near future, but vinyl tends to break in extreme temperatures and might need replaced sooner than an aluminum or iron fence. Vinyl isn’t very cheap, either, so if you are going to need to spend a little extra money up front, you might as well spend it on the highest-quality material you can afford that still does the job and will not need to be replaced after the next winter season. The longevity of the fence is really what makes it worth the extra money.

This is one instance where planning ahead is well worth the trouble. Even if you think you might have some extra cash to replace your fence in the near future, the hassle of taking down one fence and putting up another every few years is enough to make you want to choose the higher-quality material from the beginning. Whether you are looking for a simple black aluminum fence or an elegant gold aluminum fence with a circular motif and puppy panels, spending a little extra to get it right the first time will be well worth the it.