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How to Install a Garden Fence Using Fence Panels

Now is the time to get out in the garden and start those repairs and improvements you have been putting off, don’t delay any longer – enjoy the challenge.

Tools you will need for to install your garden fence using fence panels

  • String / Ranging Line - key to a straight fence.
  • Fencers Grafting Tool /Post Hole Digger - dig the post holes.
  • Spirit Level - you need to make sure the levels are right.
  • PPE Personal Protection Equipment such as Gloves - safety first!

How to Install a Garden Fence Using Fence Panels

  1. Choosing your fence: The first thing to consider is how you would like your fence to look like. You can opt for an all timber fence with timber fence panels, posts and gravel boards, or alternatively concrete slotted posts and concrete gravel boards.
  2. Setting out: Once you have decided on the style you will need to clear the area where the fence is to be installed and mark your line with Site Pegs and String/Ranging Line. Next, work out where your first post is and start from there.
  3. Start to dig: Dig a narrow hole which is 600mm deep for the first post. It sounds easy but without the right spade you will end up with a very wide hole and therefore requiring a lot of post mix to set your fence post in the ground. The best thing is to either borrow or buy a fencer’s type grafting tool or post hole digger - these are steel shovels with a narrow spade head designed to dig fence post holes neatly. Once the hole is dug, drop in your post, prop with old brick or hardcore, making sure it is vertical and then tip-in your post mix to secure.
  4. Moving on: Once you have concreted in the first post you can measure to the next post using your gravel board to determine its’ position. Dig the second hole and lean the post in the hole. If you are using concrete slotted posts and concrete gravel boards, place the concrete gravel board and your fence panel in the slot of your first post and push the second post upright so that the panel and gravel board are firmly held in the post’s slots. If you are using timber posts with a timber gravel board, fix the fence panel and timber gravel board to the post using metal cleats and nails. Once done fill in the second hole with postmix and allow it to set, and continue to work along your fence line using a string line to keep it straight and level.
  5. Top Tips: 
    • On sloping ground start at the high end and use longer posts.
    • If using timber posts, timber gravel boards and panels are best fixed to the posts with metal clips.
    • To determine the post length add 600mm in the ground + panel height + gravel board + trellis top.
    • If your fence starts from your house or wall, you can use a 100 x 47mm timber wall plate which   attaches to the house, rather than using a post.

See Our Range Of Fence Panels Online.

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Fencing Ideas for Your Garden

Fencing isn’t typically the focal point of a garden – it’s there to provide privacy and security for you and your family – but the right fencing can complement your landscaping work and even provide structure for plants to grow on.

Decorative Fencing

The simplest way to make your fencing a little more interesting is to use decorative fence panels. The boards on these fence panels are arranged in a variety of patterns, and you can choose from a wide range including modern slatted versions as well as traditional European screens.

This is the simplest way to add a little interest to your garden without having to do any additional work on your fence – installation is exactly the same as a normal fence, but you may need to use more panels than usual, depending on the type that you choose.

Make a Living Fence

If you prefer a more natural approach, a living fence could be the perfect addition to your garden. You can make a living fence by installing standard closeboard or lap fence panels for privacy while the plants are growing and during winter. Then install a layer or trellis on the front of this main fence – that works to give your climbing plants a framework to grow over. This double layer has the added benefit of making your fence stronger – perfect for windy areas.

Finally, all you need to do is choose a climber and plant it at regular intervals along the base of your trellis. All climbing plants need to be tied to a support and will require some training at the beginning – the beauty of climbing plants is that they require less and less maintenance as time goes on.

You can choose from twining climbers like Honeysuckle and Clematis, or simple Ivy if you’d like something that doesn’t need as much attention. It’s important to find out which way your fences face and choose an appropriate plant, since some climbers need a lot of sunlight to survive.

Woven Fences

Hurdle fences are a beautiful alternative to fences with traditional panels and boards. They provide a rustic, natural-looking fence that offers privacy without being at odds with the natural environment.

You can even grow climbing plants on these fences to create a living fence, since climbers can cling onto the horizontal binders.

Traditional Fences with a Twist

If you’d just like to add a pop of colour to your garden, why not choose from the huge range of colours now available as wood stains or even just exterior emulsion paint (if you don’t mind the additional maintenance involved)? All of our fence panels are treated with preservative and are ready to paint – it’s usually easier to do so after installation. The maintenance depends on the strength of your colour and the type of paint used – the more vibrant the colour, the more often you will need to repaint it. 

Fencing and the Law - Know Your Rights Before Choosing New Fencing

Boundary disputes are unfortunately extremely common in the UK. Disagreements arise regularly and for all sorts of reasons. There may be a dispute over where the boundary actually lies or there may be disagreement over who is responsible for maintenance or repairs of any existing fences or hedges.

Because there are many older properties in the UK, there are some complex situations with regard to boundaries. Old by-laws, rights of way and historically altered gardens may all contribute to the confusion which sometimes arises.

If there is an ongoing dispute over who owns how much land and this is affecting your ability to replace your fences, it is important to refer to deeds in order to establish what was originally set out when the properties were established and then to compare that to what is evident.

Sometimes, boundaries change over the years due to one householder in the past having encroached on their neighbour’s property by stealth and if this has happened on your property it is then necessary to take steps to regain your land; often this is only possible through a solicitor.

Who can paint or otherwise alter a fence once it’s up?

Only the owner of the fence may make any changes to it, even where the other side of the fence is on neighbouring property. This means that if you erect a fence in your garden, your neighbour must ask for permission before painting or staining their side of it. Similarly, they may not grow trailing plants up it or any similar activity which may cause it damage.

As the owner, you must keep the fence in good repair and ensure that it is safe and does not present any danger to those around it.

If you are in any doubt whatsoever about your fencing, it may be a good idea to contact the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.

Fortunately, most neighbours are thoughtful and careful with their fencing and will respect yours; if you’ve decided that it’s time for new fencing, make sure you let your neighbours know well in advance of work beginning. It would be most unfortunate if your new fencing was to be erected on the same day that they’d planned a garden party!

Keep them informed, tell them of your plans and let them know that they can feel free to stain their side if they choose to. This is always the fairest thing to do because then they may have a say in the overall look of their garden. Fencing can have a big visual impact on a garden so if you’re expecting them to like what you’ve chosen, it’s definitely thoughtful to allow them a hand in decorating their own side.

Lawsons supply a huge range of fencing to suit all tastes and budgets; visit our fencing selection today and choose from styles such as traditional Picket, Fence Panels, Closeboard and more unusual fencing including Birds Mouth, Knee Rail and Chainlink.

How to Choose the Right Fencing for your Garden

Deciding which sort of fencing is the best for your property isn’t an overnight task! Getting it right lies in a number of different areas. Much will depend on not only your garden but also the area in which you live.

Aesthetics are always important too – you want your fencing to fit in with the style of your home and to compliment the rest of the homes in the area.

Think about the following areas as you browse the fences available to you.

Privacy: For many of us, our neighbours and passers-by are an accepted part of our lives. We all need to live together to some extent but privacy is not to be underestimated. If you live on a busy street but enjoy using your front garden, then it’s probable that you would like to have some degree of screening available.

If you need real privacy, then select a fence with little or no space between the boards; add climbing plants for a really private boundary.

Security: Security is on the top of many homeowners’ lists when it comes to which fence to buy. Generally, the taller the better if your main concern is putting off intruders. 8ft or more is usually seen to be the option which will provide the most secure boundary though the addition of trellis to a 6ft fence will also work for most people.

Ensure that the exterior section of your fence is not climbable; check how the boards lie…is there a ‘lip’ which could be used as a foothold?

What’s the view like? We’re not all lucky enough to have a beautiful view outside our home and for some people, blocking out an unattractive building or perhaps a busy road is vital.

Taller fencing is a good idea in this instance though if there is only one eyesore you’d like to conceal then consider ‘stepped’ fencing where only those areas you want hidden are fitted with taller sections.

Safety: Securing pools or ponds is an important consideration for people who have children or who have children who visit occasionally. Remember to check the laws on pool enclosure before you purchase any fencing or gates.

A chill wind: If your garden is at the mercy of strong winds on a regular basis due to your positioning, then a good choice of fencing is vital. You can maximise draught exclusion by the addition of hardy climbers.

Period Property: Some period properties are in a designated conservation area which means that fencing choices are somewhat limited. Check up on your rights with regard to your fencing choices before you buy.

Visit Lawsons today to discover more about fencing and see a wide range of options for all your needs.

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