Fence needs new pickets

Power washing your cedar fence

Here at A Straight Up Fence Company in Denver, we are experts at how to bring an old fence back to life. We’ve found that many of our customers see the upkeep on wooden fences as time-consuming and difficult. If you want to do it yourself, be prepared to spend a good amount of time to get it just right.

So, before you start looking at a new fence you should first see if the old fence can repaired, cleaned and stained. This requires a thorough power washing, followed by restaining and sealing the wood.

Wood Fences, cedar is in a class with just one other long-lasting wood, redwood. Both of these materials are incredibly durable.

Because cedar has natural oils, it can better resist decay and insects. This also allows cedar fencing to remain straighter over the years, resisting shrinking and curving over time. Another great reason cedar is so wonderful is that its oils allow it to maintain its color.

The combination allows cedar fencing to age nicely instead of fading to gray as some wooden fences are prone to doing. Cedar fencing remains good-looking over many years.

Start with a Power Wash

If your fence no longer has that nice golden wood glow, a good pressure wash will remove the outer gray and aged surface to reveal the wood that is hiding below.

Be forewarned! Power washers can be very aggressive. They are excellent at removing dirt and grime, as well as the top layer of wood, but it is fairly easy to take off too much wood and ruin your fence. It is important to use the right sprayer and the correct technique.

Because it can be pretty easy to ruin your fence, we encourage you to consider having a professional, such as A Straight Up Fence Company in Denver, do the job for you. Mainly, a professional can complete the job more quickly and has a great amount of experience in stripping your fence properly.

Tools to Use

The power washer you need should operate at 1,500 or 2,000 psi. The more powerful pressure washers are really too strong for this job. You will also need to have both the 15-degree and 25-degree spray tips. If you are renting the machine, you can ask the rental people to provide you with a demonstration. This is a helpful way to get a feel for how to use the power washer before you are left to your own devices. These demonstrations can also provide you with some additional tips.

Prepare Yourself and Your Fence Area

You will need to tie back any plants growing along your fence line. Clear any potted plants or items that can be relocated so that they are protected from the spray. You will need to wear clothing that you don’t mind getting wet. Water resistant clothing may be preferable.

Begin the Process

You should begin spraying at least 18 inches from the wood surface using the 25-degree tip. You may need to move in closer as you move the fan spray across the boards. You will see that the wood’s surface color will brighten as it is pressure washed and it doesn’t take much effort to do this. Once the old layer is stripped away, do not spray the boards any further because you run the risk of damaging your fence. Once you have power washing down, you can switch to the 15-degree tip. It is more aggressive and works faster.

Final Notes

Now that your fence is brightened up, it is ready for repairs and staining to fully renew your fence. These final steps can really take some experience. We strongly recommend using a professional such as A Straight Up Fence Company in Denver. We really know how to bring an old fence back to life.

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