Updated: Jun 23
Want to know how to make a cedar fence that can keep its brand-new look no matter how many years go by? Many components go into the fence-building process. That can be extremely overwhelming for a beginner wanting to learn how to build a cedar fence.
This article discusses the pros and cons of fence building, on your own or with a professional, and a comprehensive step-by-step guide on how to build a cedar fence. As a beneficial bonus, we’ve added tips for maintaining your cedar fencing for the long haul.
G&B Quality Cedar can meet all your cedar board needs. This blog is informational only and not a replacement for expert advice. Please consult a professional before starting any building project as your needs and specifications may vary and it may not reflect the most current building codes, regulations, or industry standards.
Should You Learn How to Build a Cedar Fence or Leave it to a Professional?
Does cedar need to be treated? That may be a question you never considered until this very moment. If so, we’ll indicate the pros and cons of DIY fence building and outsourcing with a fence-building company to help you decide the best route.
Pros and Cons of DIY Fence Building
Depending on your experience and dedication, the pros and cons of DIY fence building can differ. If you’re a beginner in the field, leaving it to the professionals may be best. There are a lot of do’s and don'ts that go into fence installation.
Most people wanting to save money will attempt to learn how to build a cedar fence independently. However, if you’re a beginner, you may be dealing with an overwhelming task that takes more education, time, and energy than you expected. Or the final product may not be as sturdy and put together as desired.
Experience is essential, but with the help of a comprehensive guide to provide step-by-step instructions on the fence installation process, you may find that DIY fence building is a doable and money-saving endeavor. It can also be a rewarding sight to see the accomplishment of what you’ve built with your own hands!
Pros and Cons of Outsourcing the Project
One of the biggest cons of outsourcing help for fence installation is the labor cost. Those looking to save money may choose the independent route to avoid the labor cost of building a cedar fence.
Of course, on the other hand, one of the biggest pros of using a professional is that they know how to build a cedar fence using their extensive education and experience. For example, a fence-building company will know how to build a sound barrier fence, the best type of fence for sound barrier, the difference between a cedar fence vs pressure treated fence, and how to correctly install a fence to be sturdy, long-lasting, and aligned correctly for its desired function.
Another pro is that the company will do the labor for you, so you can save time and energy to focus on other projects that require your attention.
How to Make a Cedar Fence: Step-by-Step Guide to Building a Stunning, Long-Lasting Fence
You must do it right if you’ve decided to build a cedar fence independently. This step-by-step guide details the best fence-building maneuvers to install a long-lasting and stunning cedar fence effectively.
Planning and Preparation
Planning and preparing are crucial before diving into building a fence. The cost of building a cedar fence is not cheap, so planning out the steps is vital to deter any potential misuse of materials or missteps in the fence installation process.
There are a lot of choices to make during the planning process, like choosing between white cedar vs red cedar for your fencing. For example, say western red cedar, you must check a few things before proceeding. First, determining the western red cedar lumber cost is significant as the total price must fit your budget.
There’s also the grading. You can use our article on western red cedar grading for more information on grading to determine whether the wood fits the standard for your project in appearance and structure.
Planning on which wood you will use for your project and how much wood will be required are two essential parts of planning to ensure the materials fit within your budget. It will also save you time and money that could otherwise be wasted on wood that doesn’t fit the requirements that align with your project goals.
Gathering Supplies and Materials
The next important step in learning how to make a cedar fence is securing all the supplies for the project. The best place to order cedar lumber online is at G&B!
Our company is committed to the highest quality standards and a guarantee to go along with it - because we know you’ll be satisfied with our hand-picked lumber for your project. We personally grade and sort every cedar product to prioritize only the best cedar, so when our delivery truck pulls up, you’ll get what you’re paying for.
We offer wholesale lumber for those looking to sell customized lumber products or needing to buy in bulk. So if you’re searching for cedar fence posts and boards for a privacy or sound barrier fence, our lumber will be the perfect touch for your fencing or other projects.
Tools you will require for building a fence include:
Post hole digger
On our blog, we answer other questions like, is cedar fencing sustainable, for more in-depth information on the quality and desirability of this robust lumber.
Setting the Foundation
You must measure the planned fence line to set the foundation. This includes any gates that you plan on having in the fencing project.
We recommend using a measuring wheel for more extensive layouts. Next, outline and label the location of the gates and the fence line using chalk or spray paint.
You will need to subtract the length of the gates from the fence footage. Then, divide this number by the panel length of the fence style you will use for your fencing project. This is how you will determine the number of panels required for building your fence. Any extra footage will require a picket or partial panel.
Divide the fence length by the post spacing to determine the number of fence posts needed for the project. A fence post is generally inserted every 6-8 feet for adequate support for the fence.
Installing the Fence Rails
The fence rails can be installed once the fence posts are set up. This will require digging holes with the post-hole digger and adding cement for sturdy security.
The fence rails must be attached to the posts with nails using a claw hammer or power drill. Then fasteners need to be added for every post. We recommend pre-drilling the holes for the fasteners to deter possible splitting in the wood.
The level will be crucial during this step to avoid any misalignment in installing the fence rails. A top and bottom rail is necessary for any fence up to four feet tall. Fences taller than four feet will need a third rail.
The top and bottom rails must be six inches from the bottom and top of the fence posts when installed.
Attaching Fence Boards
Align each board against the rails. Then, use the power drill or claw hammer to nail each board against the rails. Repeat this action until you reach the post.
These instructions will need to be repeated with each section of posts.
Adding Finishing Touches
Numerous ways exist to add the perfect finish touch to your fence to establish a stunning masterpiece. For some, it's staining and painting the fence. For others, it’s planting flowers or bushes for a beautiful finishing touch.
Cedar wood is known for being aesthetically pleasing and sustainable, but everyone’s tastes are different at the end of the day. A common question we are asked is, can cedar fencing be painted?
Cedar fencing can be painted. However, we recommend against it mainly because of the maintenance that will be required on your part. Staining is a more manageable option that will come at a cheaper cost.
Read our article for more in-depth information on how best to add those finishing touches to your cedar fencing!
Quick Tips on Preserving & Maintaining Your New Cedar Fence for the Long Haul
How long does a cedar fence last? Depending on the quality of the cedar and how it is cared for, a cedar fence can last up to thirty years. All that effort into making an aesthetic fence will last a lifetime if your new fence is appropriately preserved and maintained.
Don’t let all your hard work learning how to build a cedar fence go to waste. Instead, scour these informative tips on preserving and maintaining your new cedar fence to keep it sturdy and pristine.
Regular Cleaning and Inspection
Enforce regular cleaning and inspection to keep up with the maintenance of your cedar fence. For example, check to see if any nails have loosened or need to be replaced. Also, ensure no boards have disconnected or loosened.
Correct these issues to prevent potential damage to your fence. A loose board could unhinge the fence panel and cause the other boards to disconnect.
Clean the cedar fence using a mixture of four ounces of oxygen bleach and 1 gallon of hot water. Mix these ingredients in a bucket. Scrub the mildew and mold off the cedar fence with this safe-to-use cleaning solution and a handy scrub brush.
It is vital to note not to use household bleach. Oxygen bleach differs from household bleach in that it does not contain sodium hypochlorite but instead contains sodium percarbonate as its active ingredient. As a result, oxygen bleach does not harm vegetation, unlike “chlorine bleach,” another term for household bleach, and is safe to use on outdoor furniture.
Applying Protective Sealant or Stain
So, does cedar fencing need to be treated? Cedar fencing doesn’t have to be treated, but we recommend doing so.
Cedar is a popular lumber for its durability and sustainability. Despite that, a sealant will be beneficial in ensuring your cedar fencing lasts as long as possible. The sealant is an extra precaution to protect your cedar from potential damage while reducing the chances of components like sun exposure and mold damaging the cedar fencing.
Preventing Moisture Damage
Applying a stain or sealant is the best method of preventing moisture damage to your cedar fencing. Combining the use of these two ingredients provides the ultimate protectionary layer. The sealant and stain soak in the wood fibers to deter moisture from damaging the wood.
Cedar fencing will otherwise be susceptible to warping, cracking, and splintering without the protection of a waterproofing sealer and stain. They will need to be reapplied every 3-5 years for continued efficacy in the maintenance of your cedar fencing.
Winterizing and Seasonal Maintenance
Cedar fencing may be durable against most elements, but a harsh winter can damage this beautiful lumber.
The help of a stain and sealant will combat potential damage to your brand-new cedar fencing. The cedar fencing should be inspected every fall and spring to assess any damage or broken nails. Caring for your cedar fencing will prevent damage and maintain this resilient wood.
Wash your cedar fencing with oxygen bleach and water cleaning solution to remove any dirt, pollen, grime, or mold that can appear. Ensure to clean your cedar fencing between seasons to deter any damage. Then apply a stain and sealant for a protective layer so your cedar fencing can not only last a long time but look brand-new, too.
Parting Thoughts on How to Build a Cedar Fence
Throughout this article, we provided an informative guide on how to make a cedar fence, protect it from damage, and maintain it for a long-lasting stunning appearance.
The first step in building your cedar fence is to get the best materials for a durable and stunning fencing installation. At G&B, you can get your cedar boards today with a guarantee that you’ll be pleased with what you receive. Every piece of lumber is hand-picked, so you can expect the highest quality cedar to arrive at your front door.
Purchase the highest quality cedar from G&B today to start building your cedar fence ASAP!
G&B Wholesale Lumber Incorporated does not assume any liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information provided in this blog post. The reader is solely responsible for any actions taken based on the information presented. Any reliance on the information is at the reader's own risk. G&B Wholesale Lumber Incorporated is not responsible for any loss, injury, or damage that may occur as a result of following the suggestions, tips, or recommendations provided in this blog post. Building projects involve inherent risks, and it is essential to exercise caution, obtain proper permits, and engage qualified professionals to ensure safety and compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. The inclusion of external links, references, or recommendations in this blog post does not constitute endorsement or guarantee the quality, reliability, or suitability of the linked sources. The reader should independently verify the information and assess its relevance to their specific circumstances. The author reserves the right to modify, update, or remove the content of this blog post at any time without prior notice. It is recommended to check for the most recent updates or consult with professionals to ensure the information is current and applicable. By reading this blog post, the reader acknowledges and accepts the above disclaimer and agrees to use the information provided responsibly and at their own discretion.