How To Refinish A Wood Fence

Posted on: 10 February 2016

If you have a wood fence in your yard, there is good chance that you'll eventually need to refinish it. All of the moisture outside, along with moisture from the sprinklers, can cause the paint to peel from the wood. Eventually, to maintain the integrity and strength of the wood, you will need to apply a new coat of paint. However, this does not mean that you just need to get out a paintbrush and start painting your fence as it is. First, you need to sand off the old paint and prepare the surface for the new finish. This article will run you through the process.

Using a Disc Sander

To make this job manageable, you need to rent or purchase a disc sander. This will work much better than a vibrating sander. It is much more effective at removing the old paint because it is more powerful. You will also need two grades of sandpaper. First, begin with a coarse sandpaper that will quickly knock off the old paint. During this step of sanding, you can use a lot of force when pushing down on the wood. Then, step up to a finer grit paper that will smooth out the surface, making it more paintable. During this step of sanding, you should apply less pressure to avoid gouging the wood or catching an edge.

Fill All the Holes

Before you start to paint your fence, you will want to fill all the holes with wood putty. All you need is a putty knife and a waterproof wood putty product. You will then need to re-sand the areas around the patched holes (after the putty dries). Since most exterior fence surfaces are relatively rough, you don't need to make the surface perfectly smooth. Just try to match the existing texture.

Painting the Fences

You can paint your fence much more quickly if you have a pneumatic spray gun. But this can be problematic if there are gaps between your fence slats. The overspray can go through the fence and settle on the other side. This is a big issue if you share the fence with a neighbor. If your fences do have gaps between the slats, you might want to consider using paint rollers instead. This will require less clean up and you won't need to worry about renting (or buying) an expensive spray gun.

In reality, a spray gun is only practical if you already own one or have easy access to one. For assistance or more information, contact fencing contractors in your area.