Installing a strong and long-lasting fence in your backyard can be a job you can complete on your own with the right tools, materials, and knowledge. A well-built fence will stand up against wind storms and prevent moisture rot from occurring in the wood posts. Here are some instructions to help you install your fence posts:
Dig and Prepare the Hole
After you have marked out your fence line and where the posts will be installed, dig the fence post holes using a shovel or a post hole digger. You can also rent a gas-powered post hole digger auger to help make the work easier. Be sure you dig the hole wide enough to be approximately double the size of your post. For example, a four-by four-inch post needs a hole that is at least eight-by-eight inches wide.
The post hole should be the depth of approximately one-third the height of your fence post. For a post that is eight feet long, your post hole should be approximately least two feet deep.
Mix the Concrete
For installing fence posts it can be easiest to use ready-mix bagged concrete, which you can find at most home improvement stores. And because you will be installing one post at a time, you can mix the concrete in a wheelbarrow, one bag at a time.
Tear open a bag of concrete and dump it into one end of the wheelbarrow. Add the recommended amount of water for the bagged concrete mix into the other side of the wheelbarrow, reserving a few cups of water. Begin combining the dry mix into the water with a shovel or garden hoe until the dry and wet are fully combined. Add any additional water to the mix to get it to the right consistency. You don't want the concrete dry and crumble or soupy, as it should be a thick but moist consistency that holds its shape when you scoop it.
Install the Post
Before you set the fence post into the hole, adding a layer of gravel a few inches deep can help add drainage around the fence post and prevent moisture rot. Scoop in some pea gravel into the hole and press it to level it out with the end of the fence post. Set the fence post onto the gravel and scoop the mixed concrete around the sides of the post. You will need someone to hold the post upright while you scoop the concrete.
Use a carpenter's level to check the sides of the post to make sure it sits straight up and down, adjusting it to correct any slight leaning to one side or the other. Scoop the concrete up around the base of the fence posts to create a slight angle, which will allow moisture to fall away from the post and prevent moisture rot from occurring.
Use these instructions to help you install a strong and long-lasting fence. Contact a company like R. Pepin & Sons Inc. for more information and assistance.