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The Home Depot

5 Ways to Weatherproof your Fence

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Fence > 5 Ways to Weatherproof your Fence
5 Ways to Weatherproof your Fence

A fence can serve a variety of purposes in a landscape, from acting as an effective barrier to providing privacy. Any fence you install probably involved considerable expense, so it’s important to protect your investment by maintaining your fence properly.


Visit the Oklahoma State University website for a detailed overview of fences with information about several different fencing materials. Even if your fence doesn’t need to corral animals, you can still use this information to help you take care of your existing fence.


Once you understand how to weatherproof your fence, you’ll know that your fence should stay in superior condition for many years.

  1. To preserve your iron fence and keep it attractive for many years, it’s important to maintain an effective rust-proof barrier.

    1.Keep Wood Fences Clean

    To minimize decay and damage, keep a wood fence clean. If you allow dirt and debris to cover the surface of the wood, it will contribute to decay over time, which will shorten the life and reduce the attractiveness of your fence.

  2. 2.Test Wood for Weatherproofing

    Eventually, you will notice weathering and reduced waterproofing on the wood surface of the fence. It’s important to keep a wood fence weatherproofed or the surface will begin to deteriorate. Whenever you begin to wonder whether your wood fence has an effective waterproof barrier, perform a simple test. Spray a small amount of water onto the wood and watch to see what happens. If the water absorbs into the wood, it will turn the wood a darker color within just a few seconds. This indicates that the waterproof barrier on the wood needs an additional coat. If the water remains on the surface of the wood in beads, the waterproofing is adequate and you don’t need to apply more.

  3. 3.Apply a Waterproofer to Wood

    The first step in waterproofing a wood fence is to clean it completely with a special wood cleaning solution. Spray it onto the wood and allow it to soak in for about 15 minutes. After the solution sits, scrub the fence gently with a stiff brush and then rinse it away. Allow the fence to dry thoroughly for about three days or you may seal moisture into the wood, which could cause decay.


    Apply the waterproofer with an applicator pad or a sprayer, keeping the application layer thin and neat. Keep working until you cover the entire fence surface.

  4. 4.Prevent Iron from Rusting

    To preserve your iron fence and keep it attractive for many years, it’s important to maintain an effective rustproof barrier. Brush off flaking rust or paint with a stiff brush and then apply the anti-rusting product thoroughly over the entire surface of the fence. Some paints have anti-rust properties, making them ideal for iron fences.

  5. 5.Cleaning Vinyl or Chain-Link

    Although vinyl and chain-link fences are virtually maintenance-free, you should clean them occasionally to keep them in good repair. Spray the fence lightly with water from the hose. Use a stiff brush to remove dirt and debris from crevices.


    With minimal maintenance, your fences should remain strong, sturdy and attractive for many years.

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