Installing A Fence In A Hurricane-Prone Area? 3 Tips For Disaster-Proof Fencing

Posted on: 18 June 2015

Whether you are a contractor or a homeowner, you need to know which fences stand the best chance against the high winds and possible flooding that can come when a hurricane strikes. While the forceful winds and storm surges that arrive during the midst of a hurricane can damage virtually anything in their paths, the right fence can stay standing and even protect your home and yard from nature's powerful forces when conditions get bad. Follow these tips for choosing a fence that has the best chance of staying in good shape when disaster strikes. 

1. Steer Clear of Wooden Fencing

While you may think that a tall, wooden privacy fence would look great around your home, wood is not the best option when installing a fence in a disaster-prone area. Not only is wood less sturdy when subjected to high winds than many other fencing materials, but it is also very flammable. 

When disaster strikes and there are power lines broken and swinging every which way in high winds, all it would take is quick contact with your wooden fence to begin a fire that not only destroys your fence, but could also spread to your home and even your neighbor's home. 

While there are fire-proof coatings and sealants sold to apply to wooden fences and other wooden home materials, it is best to just avoid a wooden fence altogether in a disaster-prone area. There are many other good options that don't bring the risks that wooden fencing does during disaster. 

2. Consider the Benefits of Vinyl Hurricane Fencing

While a fence that stays intact during a bad storm will save you from having to make costly fence repairs once the weather blows over, an ever greater feature of choosing the right fence for your area is that it could protect your home from flood waters. A vinyl fence can do both. 

You may think that any solid fencing material would blow over in high winds, but a properly installed vinyl hurricane fence can withstand strong winds that accompany hurricanes. Good-quality vinyl hurricane fencing can also be up to five times as strong as wood, and it has just enough flexibility that it will sway slightly in the wind instead of breaking immediately. 

A solid fence also has the benefit of forming a barrier around your yard that can protect it from mild flooding. Generally, the deeper the fence is placed into the ground, the more likely it can withstand the force of flood waters and keep home flooding to a minimum. Professional fence installers typically place fence posts one-third the height of the fence underground, but don't be surprised if your installer wants to try to go deeper to protect your yard from flooding. 

3. Chain Link or Wrought Iron Are Also Options

While vinyl fencing is a great option for homes in hurricane-prone areas, it is not the only option. A basic chain-link fence can hold up well in bad weather if is installed correctly. The metal is sturdy and the amount of airflow through the chain link can keep it from blowing over in high winds. An attractive metal wrought-iron fence is also a good option if you want an attractive, strong metal fence that can withstand bad weather. 

While these fences won't protect the home against flood waters, they can protect it against flying debris that hit the fence instead of traveling through the yard and hitting the home.These metal fences are fire-proof, so there can be no worries of them catching on fire like wooden fences if power lines strike them. 

If you are having a fence installed around a new home you are building or your current home in a hurricane-prone area, then weight the advantages and disadvantages of the fences that can either help or hurt your home during disaster. Make sure a technician from a good professional fence company installs it, as well, because proper installation is just as important as choosing the right type of fence to protect your home when disaster strikes.