How to set a wood fence post using dry ready-mix concrete

Updated November 21, 2016

Wood fence posts are commonly used to support a variety of fencing materials including wood, wire and plastic. Serving to fence small and large animals alike, wood fence posts are available in different sizes including the commonly used 4-by-4-inch square size. Installing a fence post securely is necessary so that the end result is a durable and long lasting fence. Securing wood fence posts with dry ready-mix concrete is a convenient method of installation.

Dig a hole in the ground using post hole diggers. Form the hole so that the depth is one-third the length of the 4-by-4-inch square post. For example, if the post is 8 feet long, the hole should be about 2 1/2 feet deep with an extra 6 inches added for gravel placement in the bottom. Form the hole with the diggers so it is at least 1 foot across.

Place gravel in the bottom of the hole and pack it down firmly with a tamp or handle of a shovel. Place the 4-by-4 wooden post in the centre of the hole. Pour a few inches of gravel around the post and tamp it down to secure the post upright. Use a level to straighten the post as needed.

Pour dry ready-mix concrete around the wooden post and fill the hole to within 4 inches or so of ground level. Even the concrete mix around the hole, if necessary, with a shovel or by hand.

Add water to the dry ready-mix concrete as directed by the manufacturer. As a rule of thumb, enough water needs to be added to the mix so it is thoroughly moistened without becoming thin or runny.

Allow the ready-mix concrete to cure and harden overnight for at least 10 to 12 hours.

Things You'll Need

  • 4-by-4-inch wood fence post
  • Post hole diggers
  • Shovel
  • Gravel
  • Level
  • Dry ready-mix concrete
  • Water
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About the Author

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.