The Fence Blew Over
A month or so ago we had a storm roll through and it did a number on my friend Jimmy’s fence. He has an older fence and quite honestly it needs to be rebuilt and a much better one should be put in its place. By Jimmy is what we call a tight wad. He is very frugal with his money. He can pinch his pennies to go further than anyone I have ever seen before. I think for some people that is just how they were raised, so being frugal may be in his DNA. If you ask him he just has a lot of bills, and has to be frugal to make ends meet, but who am I to judge?
So his fence like I said was nothing much. A simple 6 foot fence, side by side, with wooden post. Probably the same fence the builder put up when the home was built. When the storm came through it blew two panels of the fence over. It looks like the posts simply started to rot at the base of the posts causing a strong gust of wind to topple it right over. It is really amazing how strong Mother Nature can be when she waves her mighty hand.
Luckily for Jimmy and I we have a good friend Tony, that is a fence builder in Dallas. He has offered many times to replace Jimmy’s fence for cost, but like I said Jimmy is frugal. Anyway we spent one Saturday morning about a month ago repairing Jimmy’s fence. We had to laugh when he went to Home Depot and purchased two wooden posts, two bags of quickcrete, and 6 new pickets all under $30 to repair the fence. He was smiling ear-to-ear knowing he didn’t have to fork out a couple of thousand dollars to replace the entire fence.
Since we were not actually putting in a new fence, we had to get the new posts right in the same place as the old posts. This meant digging by hand the old posts that had snapped at the base, out of the ground so we could put in the new posts. Keep in mind these posts are surrounded in concrete just below the surface of the ground, so digging them out was not some easy feat.
Pro-Tip: Lie down a tap on the ground to shovel the dirt onto so you do not make a huge mess in the yard. Once you are ready to put in the new posts you shovel the dirt off of the tarp back into the hole. It makes for very nice, and easy clean up afterwards.
- We started digging around each post, keeping the diameter as narrow as possible so we did not disrupt the yard too much.
- Once we hit concrete we dug as much as we could with a regular shovel then used a hand shovel to dig the rest of the way down to the base of the concrete.
- We pulled the concrete and remaining post out of the ground. This takes some muscle and patience.
- Insert new post in the same position as the old post
- Use some cylinder form to form the concrete around the post. I used concrete forming tube I purchased at Home Depot that was just for this purpose.
- Add concrete to the form holder
- Make sure the post is level, both horizontally and vertically, before adding water to set the concrete.
- Once the concrete has set up (see directions on the quickcrete as it may be different for your area), then you can proceed to nail or screw the fence back to the posts.
We took things one step further. Once we had the fence put back together, it looked really nice, but what we did next really transformed the fence. We used regular household bleach and a pump sprayer to bleach the fence. The difference was night and day. Look at these after pictures. Notice how on the left hand side of the picture you can see the old fence part that has yet to be bleached, versus the part that was bleached. Simply amazing and it made Jimmy’s fence look brand spanking new. He was so happy.
Check out these after pictures.