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should i get a galvanized or a vinyl coated chain link fenceIf you have been looking into chain link fences, you might have noticed that there are two common types: galvanized and vinyl-coated. What is the difference between these two types of chain link, and which is right for you?

First, let’s cover what these terms mean.

Galvanized fences

Galvanized is a term for coating a metal in order to make it stronger and last longer. Most chain link fences are coated in zinc, which helps them to last longer without rusting or corroding. Galvanized fences are usually silver in color and are probably the type of chain link fence you are most familiar with. The metal is clearly visible and the end result is more industrial.

Vinyl Coated Fences

On the other hand, chain link fences are also sometimes coated in vinyl to add durability. The vinyl coating protects the metal underneath from rusting or being damaged. Vinyl coated chain link fences come in a variety of colors and have a softer look the galvanized chain link fences.

So Which is Right for You?

Pros of Galvanized Fences

Standard chain link fence. Most people are familiar with galvanized fences. It’s the classic chain link fence.
Cheaper price. Galvanized fences are a more economical option compared to vinyl coated chain link.
Industrial look. If you are fencing an industrial area, galvanized chain link will fit right in.

Cons of Galvanized Fences

Slightly less durable. Because the metal is exposed to the air and weather, it will wear down slightly quicker. Chain link fences have a long lifespan no matter which type you choose, though.
Industrial look. If you are fencing a residential property, the chain link fence might look out of place. The silver color usually stands out from the environment.

Pros of Vinyl Coated

More customizable. Vinyl coated fences come in many colors and can be colored to blend into the surrounding environment.
More attractive. Vinyl has a softer feel than galvanized fence sand looks better around homes.
Increased durability. Because the metal is wrapped in a protective layer of vinyl, these fences will be slower to rust or break down.

Cons of Vinyl Coated

Price. Vinyl coating is more expensive than galvanized chain link fence. If your project is one where the appearance of the fence doesn’t matter as much as the price, this is not the best choice.
Vinyl breaking. While the vinyl coating is sturdy, in some situation it may start to break off or tear, which is very unattractive. This is more common when the fence sees a lot of physical contact, such as at a baseball field.

Both types of fences can have privacy slats inserted into them, so that shouldn’t be a factor. What might be a factor is whether or not you want the color of the slats to match the color of the fence, in which case choosing a colored vinyl coated fence is best.

Both galvanized chain link and vinyl coated chain link fences have their place, so it’s a matter of personal preference and what is best for your project. No matter which type you choose, PrivacyLink is great source for chain link fences!

should i fence my front yard?Fences in backyards are common. However, many homeowners find themselves asking if they need a fence in their front yard. While front yard fences aren’t as common, they are definitely not uncommon. Here are some things to consider when asking if you need a fence in your front yard.

  1. Pets. If you have pets who will be running around in your front yard, it’s a good idea to fence the area in. Even if your pet is the most well trained and would never leave your yard, a good fence provides peace of mind to passersby. It also provides safety to your pet by ensuring they won’t run out into the street.
  2. Children. For similar reasons, a front yard fence can be a good idea if you will have children playing in the front yard. It keeps them in the yard and away the dangers of the street.
    Security. Fences in the front and, complete with a locked gate, add security and privacy to your home. If you are concerned about crime, they can be a good idea to deter people from entering your property.
  3. Property disputes. This is uncommon, but occasionally people have issues with neighbors crossing property lines in their front yard. Establishing a fence along the property line ( be sure to first officially determine where the property line is!) will keep their plants, pets, and property out of your yard.
  4. Neighborhood goodwill. On the other hand, you probably care what your neighbors think. If no other houses on your street have a fence in the front yard, your neighbors might not look kindly on you establishing a fence, as it changes the feel of the entire neighborhood.
  5. HOA or other restrictions. Before you build a front yard fence, you will want to make sure that there aren’t any code issues you’ll run into, with your HOA or the city. In some places front yard fences aren’t allowed or have restrictions such as maximum height. You don’t want to build a fence you’ll have to take down.
  6. Aesthetics. This can go either way. If you have a beautiful home exterior and well-maintained yard, a fence will detract from that. On the other hand, a beautiful fence can spruce up an otherwise drab yard.

Overall, whether or not to install a front yard fence is a matter of personal taste and factors (unless you’re not allowed to build one, of course). These are just a few things to consider when making the decision. If you do know you want a fence, why not browse our beautiful collection of fences?

Many yards have some sort of slope or hill in them. This may leave homeowners wondering if it’s possible to install a fence around the yard with the slope. While it may be more challenging to install a good-looking fence on a hill, it certainly is possible. It’s best to leave the job to a fencing professional to guarantee a professional looking result. However, if you are interested, we’ve outlined the basic methods a fence architect can use to install each type of fence on a slope.

Chain Link Fence

Each type of fence has to be approached differently when working with a slope. Chain link fences are relatively easy to install on a slope. First, the fence posts are installed. They are installed vertically, no matter the slope they are installed on.

Then, a section of chain link fence is hung. This section is carefully measured to be oversized, as it will be cut down later. The chain link fence is hung parallel to the slope of the ground. This means it will be at an angle to the fence posts, with extras hanging over the end. These extra sections are cut at what is called the bias. Basically, the sides of the chain link fencing are cut at an angle in order to be attached to the fence posts. The end result is a fence that perfectly follows the slope of the ground without any awkward gapping at the bottom.

Privacy slats can be installed in a chain link fence on a hill. They will need to be installed at an angle in order to match the angle of the chain webbing. Homeowners occasionally worry about how this will look, but we find that it ends up looking quite natural on a hill and is nothing to worry about.

Picket Fences

If you are installing a wooden fence with individual pickets, you have the option to create what is called a racked fence. Each picket of the fence is cut to a different length, so that the fence appears level at the top while the bottom follows to slope of the ground. This results in an aesthetically pleasing fence and looks especially good if some of your yard is sloped while other sections aren’t because of the even appearance of the top of the fence. However, racking a fence is time-consuming because each post has to be cut individually, and the measurements must be precise to ensure that it lines up precisely.

Panel Fences

Many fences are sold in pre-assembled panels. These can be intimidating when you’re installing a fence on a slope because you can’t exactly cut off the extra like with a chain link fence or rack them like a wooden fence. However, a method called stepping is available for these pre-assembled fences. It’s called stepping because it looks like the steps in a set of stairs. Each section of fence is installed level instead of sloped, which means it will touch the ground at one end, but leave a gap at the other. Each section is installed a little higher (or lower, depending on which end of the slope you start on) to accommodate the slope. This creates the stair appearance because each section is at a different height. Stepping is often the only fencing option for dramatic slopes and looks good with many different types of fence panels.

Professional Installation

We hope these have given you hope that you can have a fence installed in your sloped or hilly yard! As always, we recommend that you hire a trusted fence installer, especially because it can be difficult to install a fence on a slope properly. If you are fencing professional, we invite you to check out our selection of fencing products for all of your fencing needs, including hilled yards!

Why Choose Factory-Inserted Slats over slatting fences by handIf you’re a fence installer, contractor, or landscape architect, you probably have experience slatting fences. In fact, you and your team are probably experts at slatting fences. Thus, you may be wondering why you should bother switching to factory-inserted chain link fence slats. Here are the reasons to consider utilizing factory-inserted chain link slats:

  • Save time. If you have slatted a fence by hand, you know that can easily be one of the most time-consuming parts of the installation process. If you are on a tight schedule, you want to be able to finish the fencing as quickly as possible. With factory-inserted fence slats, you only have to hang the fence. This completely cuts out the step of slatting. Imagine how much time that would save you and how many more jobs you could accomplish in that saved time every year!
  • Save on labor. Small companies and one-man-shows don’t have the labor to spend days and days slatting fences. There are much more valuable things that your labor force can be doing with their time, such as installing more fences. Be wise with how you use your labor and cut out unnecessary steps! It’ll make you and your crew happier. Spencer in North Carolina said, “We liked it. Crews liked it too. It was faster and they liked it a whole lot better than putting slats in themselves.”
  • Save money. When you’re able to save time on each project, you’re spending less time but making the same amount of money. This means you are saving money on the cost of labor for each project. Just think how nice it would be if your business was even more profitable. Pre-inserted slats can help you achieve just that!
  • Consistent Results. Humans make mistakes sometimes, and that applies to slatting fences. If you’ve ever seen a fence with uneven slats, you know what I’m talking about. Factory-inserted slats provide a consistent result that looks great every time. There’s no headache about making sure your slats are the right length or cutting them down. Everything is exactly right, the first time.
  • Beat out the Competition. If you’re bidding for a job, factory-inserted slats offer competitive advantages traditional fences don’t have. The time and labor saved by not having to slat fences might just be the difference that wins you the job. Jeff in Pennsylvania shared, “We proposed using Noodle Link on a large job for a major company, which was approved. The company has two locations….. We were only awarded one location. The other location was awarded to another fence company that put up chain link only and hand inserted the slats afterwards. We both started at the same time. We finished more than two weeks earlier than the company that hand inserted the slats…. ” You better believe that company will be choosing pre-inserted slats over slower competitors in the future.

  • The real question here is why would you choose to slat fences by hand when you could choose factory-inserted slats? There are clear advantages to not having to slat fences yourself!

is it time to replace your fence?You might be looking at your yard this summer and wondering if it’s time to replace your old fence. If you’re not sure, here are some factors to consider:

Is there significant damage?

A plank or two in a wooden fence can easily be replaced. However, if you fence has more significant damage, it’s time to consider replacing it. At some point, the cost of repairing an old fence outweighs the cost of installing a whole new one. A good rule of thumb is that if you find yourself having to replace or repair more than 20% of the fence, it’s better to just replace it outright.

Do you need more privacy?

Many fences don’t offer a lot of privacy. If your fence has large gaps or just doesn’t offer the privacy you’d like, look into replacing it with a newer fence with more privacy. Privacy means that everything in your yard is safer and allows you to enjoy your yard more comfortably, so it’s definitely worth replacing your fence to obtain.

Are animals a consideration?

This one goes both ways. If you have animals that you want to keep in your yard, old fences that are starting to fall apart should be replaced. The same goes if you are trying to keep animals such as deer out of your yard and garden. Older fences are easier for animals to enter and exit through. Prevent this from happening by replacing your fence.

Is it wood?

Wood fences are prone to a lot more damage than other fence types. Wood splinters, rots, and warps. If your wooden fence is starting to look worse for the wear, it’s often much easier to replace it than to try to repair the wood. Painting can make it look better in the short term, but the problems will return.

Are you selling the house soon?

A new fence can do a lot for the curb appeal of your home. If you know that you are moving soon, consider replacing the fence now so that you have a more attractive yard to offer buyers.

Do you want a new style?

A perfectly valid reason to replace your fence is just because you want to change the look of your home. Fences do a lot for the feel and appearance of a yard. If you’re looking to switch up your backyard, start with the fence!

If you do decide to replace your fence, be sure to check out the wide variety of fencing options that PrivacyLink offers!