Vinyl Fence – Fencing Easy to Maintain
PVC (polyvinyl chloride) fencing, or vinyl fencing, is not a coated metal fence or flexible plastic fence, but fully constructed of rigid vinyl material. Recent advances in technology have made this choice of fencing more realistic for homeowners.
In the past, the long-term sturdiness of a vinyl fence fell short of expectations. The vinylfence had weaknesses were expressed in two ways – physical sturdiness, or the ability to withstand impacts and other physical forces, and environmental sturdiness, or the ability to withstand sun and weather.
Current technology has addressed these concerns. Now, PVC fence manufacturers can produce strong, attractive fences that are environmentally sturdy as well. There are two manufacturing methods currently in use to produce PVC fencing:
Mono-extrusion and co-extrusion.
- Mono-extrusion creates the fence components through one nozzle. This method mixes all the ingredients together (PVC, coloring, anti-oxidants, UV inhibitors, etc), so all ingredients are present throughout the entire manufactured piece. This method is more costly because of the increased use of expensive materials throughout the manufactured piece.
- Co-extrusion creates the fence components through two nozzles: one which creates a base structure, and one which creates the surface coating on top of the base structure. These layers, once put together, cannot be separated. Ingredients such as color, anti-oxidants and UC inhibitors are only included in the surface coating. Materials used in the base structure can affect the strength of the fence, so be sure to choose a reputable manufacturer with a strong warrantee.
The highest quality fence is manufactured with "virgin" vinyl. Manufacturers can also use recycled materials in their fence to reduce costs. If this is true, it is in your best interest to know this up front, and to purchase thicker fence components to compensate for the slightly weaker recycled material.
Costs of vinyl fencing are slightly higher than their wood counterparts, but lower upkeep costs balance that out. Vinyl fencing comes in a variety of styles such as post and rail, picket, ornamental, lattice and privacy. Installation is similar to wood fence, but many vinyl fence manufacturers have removed the use of screws and nails to secure the fencing to the framework. Vinyl fence posts are normally installed by encasing them in concrete.