FAQ: How Much Space Between Fence Pickets?

Should I leave a gap between fence pickets?

When building a wood fence, be sure to plan for a space between the pickets and the ground. In most applications, a wood fence should be installed at least two inches off the ground. Your posts and rot boards (if you choose to install them) should be the only fence components that contact the ground.

What is the gap between pickets?

The pickets overlap by at least one inch on each side of the boards. So, for example, six-inch fence boards would be spaced approximately 3 1/2 inches apart since the actual width of the six-inch board is 5 1/2 inches.

Is it better to nail or screw fence boards?

Nails are faster than screws to install, meaning less labor for you or your builder (which may translate into lower installation cost). Screws, on the other hand, secure the fence better than nails. They also ensure easier rework should you need to replace a damaged picket.

How do I keep my fence board from warping?

To avoid swelling and shrinking, boards should be stacked uniformly according to thickness. The stickers placed between the boards should also be vertically aligned and lying flat. Lumber piles should also be placed on flat ground. Sometimes, cupping can be prevented by stacking weights on top of stacked lumber.

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How many bags of cement do I need for a fence post?

Most fence post holes will need between 1 – 4 bags of concrete to securely hold the post in place. The best way to determine the size of the hole is: Diameter of the hole is 3 times the width of the fence post. Depth of the hole is one-third to half the above ground height of the fence post.

What is code for spindle spacing?

U.S. building codes mandate that balusters have no more than a 4-inch gap between them. This relatively tight amount of spacing still allows for visibility between spindles, but also stands as a safety measure to prevent small children from becoming stuck between spindles or from slipping through the balusters.

What nails do I use for fence pickets?

The standard option is hot-dipped galvanized nails, which provide more corrosion-resistance than electro-galvanized or hot-galvanized materials. The most reliable material for pressure-treated wood is stainless steel. Use 6-d (2-inch) rink shank nails to fasten pickets and infill boards.

Can I use a nail gun for fencing?

A coil nail gun, specifically a siding coil nail gun works best for fencing. It can shoot ring shank nails up to 2-1/2-inches long. A framing nailer can also be used for fencing work. The best nail gun is one that delivers the proper size and type of nails depending on the wood being used for the fencing.

How many screws should be in a fence panel?

Use at least six 2-inch galvanized deck screws per panel.

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