If you are considering a new fence for your house, ranch, farm, arena or other application you might be asking yourself “What really makes one particular vinyl fence better than another?” It can be a little confusing and of course companies will always tell you their product is best, but what are the actual indicators?
Materials; Wood is generally considered a poor choice for ranch fence because of the maintenance required and the high cost of replacing damaged and old wood fences. This is especially true with ranch fence as the size and length of the fence tends to be larger than say a typical residential yard.
Vinyl is a better choice because of the durability it has over wood. Not only will it not rot or deteriorate over time but it never needs painting or sealing of any kind regardless of your region’s climate. However, not all vinyl fence is the same just because it’s vinyl. The quality of the vinyl used can vary from one manufacturer to another. You will want to ensure it is 100% vinyl and that the thickness is as high as you can find. Vinyl thickness is measured and shown in inches. For example, a heavy duty post should be .15” thick (wall thickness) otherwise it might actually be a post “sleeve” and not an actual post and will require wood posts inside.
Construction; just as the materials can vary, so can the design and construction of the fence. Most heavy duty ranch fences are made with existing holes in the posts for the rails to be inserted which eliminates the needs for brackets which are known for breaking and other problems. You should also ensure the rails have braces (or ribs as they are called) inside for added strength. Most quality vinyl rails will be “double ribbed” with two braces inside the rails for support.
Last, be sure you are considering a manufacturer with a good reputation, strong warranty, and a history of service in the industry. You should try and work directly with the manufacturer and ensure the company you choose will provide installation support to you or your contractor. You might even want to ask your manufacture if they can recommend an installer that they have worked with before.