Building privacy fence panels

Updated February 21, 2017

Building privacy fence panels begins with a design and some measurements. Decide how tall you need your privacy fence to be and how many panels it will take to block the area. Standard heights for treated wood fences are eight or 10 feet, but you can find treated lumber 12 feet and higher. You can bind treated wood panels together for a more solid fence, or you can attach lattice panels to your treated wood posts for a more open privacy fence. Deciding on the design of your fence and measuring the dimensions are the first steps in building your privacy fence panels.


Treated wood posts and lumber are available at your local home improvement store. Posts for the frame of your privacy fence are placed every eight feet so purchase as many four-by-four, six-by-six and three-by-five posts you will need for the length of your panel. The spacing is particularly important if you are building your fence with lattice, as each end attaches to a post. Treated wood panels can be made from two-by-four, two-by-six or two-by-eight panels, or a mixture for a more interesting privacy fence. Two one-by-four or two-by-four treated wood strips will be attached to the backs of each panel to secure the planks together. You'll also need a post hole digger, cement, screws and a screw driver to build privacy fence panels.


Begin your project by digging the holes for the fence posts. Standard depths of 18 to 24 inches apply in most areas, but check your local building codes for specific information in your area. Place the posts in the wholes and secure them with concrete. Brace the posts with scrap wood as the concrete sets. Place the lumber panels face down on the ground spaced exactly for your panel. Attach the one-by-four strip across the back, four to eight inches from the top and the bottom of the panels. The height placement will depend on whether you plan to cut a design in the top of your privacy fence panels. Scalloping or curving the top edge adds a softer aspect to the design of your fence.

Attach the panels to the posts, once the concrete is completely dry. Even though your wood is pressure treated for outdoor use, you should also apply a wood sealer at least once each year, for further protection.

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About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.