How to remove old fence posts

Written by kayla lowe
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How to remove old fence posts
Posts supporting old fences may need replacing. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Maintaining your fence is a necessary element of maintaining your yard and securing your privacy. Occasionally, old fence posts may need to be replaced due to deterioration, rot, settling or damage. Check your fence posts if the fence is more than 10 years old. If find that they need removal, you must determine if they are secured with concrete or simply soil. Removing posts from concrete is much more difficult.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Screwdriver
  • Nail pry bar
  • Shovel
  • Slate bar

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  1. 1

    Remove the fencing from the post you want to remove. Unscrew screws with a screwdriver; for nails, use a nail pry bar to carefully pull the nails away from the post without damaging the fence material.

  2. 2

    Dig the soil away from the area surrounding the post. Excavate enough dirt to loosen the post. Pull the post out of the ground if it isn't held by concrete. Continue to Step 3 if there's a concrete footing.

  3. 3

    Dig all soil away from the area surrounding the concrete. Dig about 6 inches deep to expose at least 6 inches of the concrete.

  4. 4

    Pry the concrete from the ground with a slate bar. Push down and around the concrete, then pull up and at an angle to move the concrete.

  5. 5

    Keep prying the fence post until the post and concrete release from the ground.

Tips and warnings

  • Dig completely around the base of the concrete. Then push soil beneath the concrete as you pry it upward, to help move the concrete toward the surface.
  • Manually removing a fence post from concrete is exhausting physical labour.
  • Beware of a rotted post falling apart; take care how much pressure you apply to rotted posts so you don't injure yourself.

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