How Can I Strengthen a Fence?

Updated February 21, 2017

Fence posts are more than simple connectors for the wire or beams creating the fence line. Fence posts are also the strength and support. A leaning fence line indicates that one or more fence posts are weakened. If a fence post collapses it brings down the fence line connected to it and possibly adjoining fence posts. Collapsed fence lines lead to loss of livestock or invasion of planted fields. Correcting the problem requires shoring up the posts so there is additional support. This will decrease the cost as opposed to replacing the post entirely.

Examine each fence post along the fence line. Look for weak, leaning or damaged posts. This will be where you must rebuild to add strength to the fence. If these posts fall, the entire panel or section connected to it will also collapse.

Identify the fence posts that need firming up. These are the posts that can remain in place, but need further support.

Mark the posts so you can work efficiently to correct the fence line.

Measure and mark 8 feet from the post on either side of the fence line. Use the post hole digger to make a 3-foot hole at the markings. This is where the support posts will go.

Set the end of an 8-inch wide post in each hole. Inspect each post to ensure it is standing straight. Backfill the hole with dirt and pack tight.

Line up one of the boards even with the top of the fence line with one end against the old post and one end against a new post. Nail the board into place. Repeat this step for each length between an old post and a new post.

Wrap the wire around the bottom of the old post. Lead the wire to the top of a new post. Make sure the wire is tight against the fence. Wrap and tie off the wire to the top of the new post above the board. Attach the wire at both ends with fencing staples.

Use the shovel to dig 6 inches below the outside base of the post on the side that is leaning. Have an assistant push the post upright. Have them hold the post as you work to avoid collapsing the fence.

Measure and mark a 2-by-4-inch board to be the length of the distance from the bottom rail or wire of the fence to the ground. Add 6 inches to this measurement and cut the board. Set the 2-by-4-inch board lengthwise at the base of the post in the hole. Backfill the hole and tamp down the dirt.

Dig down 6 inches below the outside base of the post on the opposite side. Have someone hold the post upright. Repeat the step used to insert the 2-by-4-inch board on this side. Allow the fence post to stand freely to see if it stays upright and secure.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Post hole diggers
  • 8-inch posts
  • 2-by-4 board, 8 foot long
  • Assistant
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • Smooth fencing wire
  • Fencing staples
  • Fence tensioner
  • 2-by-4 board
  • Shovel
  • Eight 3-inch wood screws
  • Electric screwdriver
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