Waterproofing Your Fence
Wooden fences are a gorgeous addition to your garden and are available in a plethora of shapes, sizes and styles. They also require a lot of maintenance in order to stave off damp and rot, so it’s important to make sure that you stay on top of any repairs or touch ups that may need to be done. Not properly maintaining your fence can cost a fortune in the long run, and extensive repairs or replacement may require an experienced tradesman. If you stay on the task, waterproofing is a pretty simple task that most people won’t need to hire a professional for.
Water-resistant paint is a great way to keep your fence in tip top condition. There are plenty of different types of paint that can be used to waterproof a fence but most people generally go for paint made from either an alkyd or latex base. Both types of paint are widely available in a large variety of colours and levels of glossiness.
Alkyd based paint is oil based and is often used to waterproof fences due to its high weather resistance. Unlike latex paint, alkyd paint doesn’t require a primer on the fence before applying. Alkyd paint also tends to splatter more than latex paint, so if you’re not great at painting, it’s easier to make a mess with alkyd based paint.
Latex based paint is different from alkyd based paint as it allows moisture to pass through without causing damp or rot. If you opt for latex paint, you’ll need to apply a primer on the fence before painting.
Always make sure that you use a water resistant paint to coat a fence as standard paint will allow rot and warping to take place.
Waterproof sealants are another great way to waterproof a fence. Sealants offer long-term protection from the elements as they are usually made from silicone, although there are latex based sealants available. Sealants have both coloured and clear options and provide different aesthetic benefits. Coloured sealants are generally used to darken a lighter coloured fence, whereas clear sealants are used to bring out a fence’s natural colour. Sealants can be used on an unpainted, unfinished fence in addition to an already painted fence.
The third option when waterproofing a fence is a wax polish. The wax is usually a mix of beeswax and carnauba, as well as various other products. Wax polish helps protect the fence from general dirt and dust and can be used in conjunction with varnished and oiled fences. Wax polish is available in clear, coloured and pine options. Clear wax waterproofs the fence while allowing the fence to retain it’s original colour, whereas coloured wax brings out the colour of the fence. Pine wax is usually only used on light coloured fences and in addition to waterproofing, it imbues the fence with a strong amber colour.
However you plan to waterproof your fence, it’s imperative that the work is done correctly. A poorly finished fence will allow moisture in which will cause rot and warping over time, usually meaning that the fence will need to be completely replaced. Doing a proper job waterproofing your fence will save you a fortune.