Fences provide many benefits to a property, with almost zero downsides. They help to keep kids and pets within while keeping neighbors and other unwanted animals/visitors at bay. That said, the best kind of fence is one that’s durable, easy-to-maintain and, of course attractive.
The majority of people who have installed vinyl fences often ask whether you should put concrete inside vinyl fence posts. Best vinyl posts manufacturers suggest that vinyl fences should be installed with concrete for various reasons that we’ll discuss.
Do You Put Concrete Inside Vinyl Fence Post?
Manufacturers unanimously recommend vinyl fence posts to be installed into concrete-filled post holes. Setting vinyl posts into concrete ensures a consistent footing such that the posts remain inline and functional for years to come.
Concrete should occupy the post home up to 3-4 inches from the top. Keep in mind that the post hole diameter should be around 3 times the post’s width. The depth should be about 1/3 of the posts above the surface height.
Importance of Concrete in Vinyl Fence Posts
Vinyl posts are probably the most important part of any fence. For a fence to be strong enough to withstand the elements and common wear and tear, the posts should be sturdy and well-secured. That’s why most fence posts manufacturers recommend the use of concrete in vinyl fence posts.
Another reason why you should concrete inside vinyl fence posts is to help achieve maximum consistency during fence installation. During the installation of vinyl fence posts into the ground, it’s important to note that soil will hardly be uniform and is likely to change over time.
This, in turn, will affect the posts, and consequently the rest of the fence. A strong foundation point is crucial to cater to weight loads and wind.
While concrete is the foundation of the fence, using it in the post holes will ensure consistency for all of the posts.
Using concrete in the foundation of your vinyl fence posts provides a firm base that won’t shake, thus minimizing the movement of the post. Otherwise, the ground is always settling and moving.
Get the Most From Your Vinyl Fence Posts
To make sure that your vinyl fence posts is sturdy and secure, there’re several things that you should be done. The first thing is to check that the post holes are deep enough.
A good hole should cover more than 1/3 of the post’s bottom. Also, check that the holes are wide enough, preferably three times the post’s width.
The only argument backing the installation of fences sans concrete is that post-removal is a lot easier in case you wish to change the fence.
But since it’s every homeowner’s goal to install a fence that will last a lifetime, using concrete for your vinyl fence foundation can be a great move.
So, What’s the Best Concrete for Fence Posts?
For a small or a mid-sized project, we recommend going with premixed. Speaking of quantity, it may be right for 4×4 fence posts to have 1 bag per hole.
Remember the depth of the post hole should be 1/3 the posts above surface height. In the case of a 6’ above ground post, set 3 feet in the ground and use a post with an overall height of 9 feet.
Some types of fences have higher chances of tipping. Therefore posts installation is particularly important in such cases.
Full-panel privacy fences, for example, are the most susceptible to heavy loads and win damage because they’re typically solid with no way for the wind to blow through the slats.
This often makes them function like sails on a boat. Basically, the more surface area the fence has, the stronger the posts need to be.
Most of the how-to-resources simply stress the importance of deferring to the manufacture’s installation guidelines for installing a vinyl fence. Still, not all the vinyl manufacturers as we painstakingly found out provide the installation instructions.
For instance, some local manufactures deal largely with local American Fence Association (AFA) licensed contractors and hardly communicate with DIY clients. They just assume the installation technicians are properly trained.
Again, to make sure the vinyl fence posts are secure, there’re several things that you should do. Start by making sure the holes are deep enough.
Good post holes should bury a little more than the bottom third of a post. You also need to make sure the holes are wide enough- not less than three times of your post. For DIY installers, it’s important to know that there’re common installation procedures the need for proper installation methods.
The Bottom Line
Overall, installing vinyl fence is hard work. It’s a project you might want to leave to the professionals. For best results, we suggest that you don’t do it alone.
Considering the amount of work associated with the overall project, installing vinyl fence posts can be a hefty task, especially when dealing with concrete.
You will be required to haul potential loads of dirt, concrete, and materials through the course of the entire project.
Meanwhile, you can learn also learn a lot from the local contractors. They may help you find ways to make the process more efficient and probably more affordable.