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Are Vinyl Fences The Best Value in Fencing Today?Have you been paging through the flyers in Sunday’s newspaper looking at all the options for fencing your yard? Most of the options in the flyer are made from a variety of different woods. Some are pressure treated, some are listed as weatherproof, and others are a little less defined. Vinyl fences may not even be an option showing up in the flyer, which is a bit tragic. Vinyl fencing may be the best value you can find.Do You Want Value or Low Price?This is where people really get trapped. They see the slightly lower cost of installing a wood fence and assume it means a greater value. They forgot to figure the added cost of painting or sealing the fence. They probably ignored the difference in time required for cutting pieces. It is almost without doubt anyone believing a wood fence is the best value ignored future maintenance needs. The lowest price option over a couple years suddenly becomes the highest priced option.How Could Vinyl Fences Be Lower Cost than Wood?Do a quick search and check the latest price for a gallon of wood sealer. Figure out how many gallons you will need to coat your entire fence. Now read the can carefully. How often does it say to repeat the application? Most times it is a minimum of annually, sometimes twice per year. Multiply your original cost of sealant times 5 years. How much did you just add to your cost?Now, the next step in figuring the real cost of your fence starts with slat replacement. How many boards are going to rot, be damaged by insects, or be broken by over aggressive children playing? Figure replacing about 5 to 10 percent of your boards over the course of 5 years. Add that to your cost of the sealant.For the last step, how many hours will you spend painting the sealant on the fence? How many hours to replace damaged wood once or twice per year? Take your estimate and multiply it by $20. You are worth at least $20/hour. Total this figure along with the wood and sealant. Suddenly you have a very big number.
Vinyl Fences Require Almost Zero MaintenanceSuddenly we can see the big difference maker. Vinyl fences do not require sealant. They do not rot, get attacked by insects, suffer from weather damage, and are tough as steel. In five years your maintenance will consist of using a garden hose to rinse off the dust. Are you beginning to understand why vinyl fences are the greatest value in fences today? Cost and Value Are Not the Only Criteria If it came down to only cost and value then your choice might already be tilting towards vinyl, but there is another factor at play, the beauty of your fencing project. Did your mind just say “Ah ha, wood does have an advantage?” If you thought this, you may have just made one more mistake. A vinyl fence is almost indistinguishable from a wood fence. Step a few feet away and you will be confident you are looking at a beautiful wood fence. The only difference is next year or five years from now the vinyl fences will look the same. The wood fence will be weathered, damaged, and ready for replacement. The choice is yours, long term beauty and value, or the wooden alternative.