As with anything you purchase, the value you assign to it will depend on a multitude of factors. How much you need to spend at the outset versus how much time and effort you’ll need to maintain a fence should be one thing to consider when you’re deciding on which material to invest in. You’ll also need to think about how well the material will hold up to the environment. And, of course, your decision will also take into account your personal design aesthetic.
So, in the interest of helping you make a decision, here are the facts about metal and wooden fences.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Metal Fences
When you’re deciding on metal as a material for your fence, you’ll need to compare those made from aluminum with those manufactured from steel.
Aluminum Vs. Steel Fencing
Aluminum is cheaper than steel. But within each category, you must also account for the cost to treat the materials for extra durability. If you want powder-coated aluminum or if you choose galvanized steel (coated with zinc), you’ll pay more than if you purchase fencing that doesn’t include those upgrades.
Material costs aside, it’s also more expensive to install a steel fence versus an aluminum one because aluminum weighs less. Contractors will determine installation cost based on your yard shape and the slope of your terrain.
As for durability, steel is stronger than aluminum, so it’s not subject to the kind of dents and dings that can potentially impact aluminum fences. Because of its light weight, aluminum is not recommended if you’re trying to secure your property from intruders.
Aluminum won’t rust, but it is susceptible to corrosion over time if you don’t purchase a protective coating. Steel is more likely to rust, but galvanization will provide exceptional protective properties.
As for maintenance, since aluminum fencing is held together by screws, you’ll need to periodically check to make sure that the screws haven’t loosened or fallen out. Galvanized steel fencing is welded, so you won’t have to worry about its structural integrity. Both aluminum and galvanized steel fencing will need to be periodically cleaned with soapy water.
Metal Fencing: Bottom Line
With both aluminum and steel fencing, you’ll be able to customize your fence design, especially if you prefer ornamental aluminum or ornamental iron fencing. However, many people prefer the look of ornamental iron fencing to its aluminum counterpart, as galvanized steel resembles real wrought iron fencing at a much better price.
Both aluminum and steel will require periodic upkeep. Aluminum will be cheaper to purchase and install, but steel is stronger and more secure. If you prioritize security, steel is a better option. Ultimately, your decision to go with aluminum versus steel will depend on your budget, your reasons for installing a fence, and how much you value the overall look and aesthetic of the different materials.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Wooden Fences
At the outset, wooden fences are less expensive than metal fences, although your price could skyrocket depending on the type of wood you select. Fortunately, you can purchase reliable and attractive wooden fencing with less expensive wood. Wood fencing is also less expensive to install than metal fencing.
Because wood is vulnerable to rot, you must protect it with a sealant. But you’ll need to reapply a protective coating every few years to increase its longevity. Even with regular upkeep, a wooden fence will not last as long as a metal fence.
If you’re opting for privacy, wooden fencing is a good choice. Although you can find metal fencing options that are good for privacy, there are few design choices that would be appropriate for a residence rather than a business.
Wooden Fencing: Bottom Line
Wood is a less expensive material than metal, so if you’re trying to save money upfront, it’s a good material for fencing. However, it will not last as long as metal, even if you maintain it regularly. Your budget, your need for privacy, and a fondness for the look of wood versus metal will all factor into your choice to purchase wooden fencing. Austin homeowners tend to like the wooden fencing aesthetic, but ultimately it will come down to personal preference.
Wood and Iron Fencing in Austin
There are several factors to consider when deciding whether to purchase an iron or wood fence. Austin-based Northwest Fence & Iron offers both materials, because there’s no such thing as an “average” Austin resident! We’re best known for our popular ornamental iron fencing, but we also know the value of wood fencing in this part of Texas.
Northwest Fence & Iron has been serving the Austin community for more than 23 years, and whichever material you choose, you can be sure that we’ll use the highest quality materials and provide superior customer service. So, whether you like wood or iron fences, Austin’s Northwest Fence & Iron offers quality, professionalism, and value. Call us at 512-337-3102 or contact us online to learn how we can customize a fencing solution for you!