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How to Fix Chicken Wire

Updated February 21, 2017

Chicken wire is an inexpensive, effective and easy-to-work-with way to provide fencing structures, whether you use it for its intended purpose of protecting poultry coops or apply it to home, garden or craft structures. When chicken wire breaks, rusts or tears, its structural integrity is compromised. To save yourself the time and trouble of replacing your chicken wire or creating bulky patches of double thick wire, patch broken segments of chicken wire by weaving in pieces of steel wire.

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  1. Unbend and stretch out any of the broken strands of the wire. Use pliers or vice grips to help you do this successfully without injuring your hands. This will minimise pokes and maximise your ability to bend the wire into the shape you want. Untwist and unbend sections that have been folded over to restore the surface of the wire mesh to its previous shape.

  2. Trim away any loose twisted sections of the wire. Chicken wire is made up of sections with tight, spiral twists, but any broken sections that end in one of these will be too rigid to bend back into shape and will create an injury hazard if they're left hanging. Snip these pieces off using the wire cutters, but leave twisted sections that branch off into untwisted, single strands of wire so you can bend these back in place.

  3. Cut off any rusted bits of wire in the broken area, even if they're attached to sections of broken wire that are not rusted. Removing rusted pieces will help prevent another break later.

  4. Weave wire into the broken area to mend it. Attach the new wire to the chicken wire so that it stretches from the unbroken area on one side of the break to the unbroken area on the other side. Twist the end of the wire on one side tightly around a short, straight section, such as the bottom of one of the hexagon shapes. Then weave it through the wire in a sewing, in-and-out fashion a few times. Attach the other end of the wire in a similar fashion on the other side of the break.

  5. Wrap the broken ends of wire into the lines of the new wire patchwork, folding and twisting them into the lines of the new wire.

  6. Spray the new wire area with finishing spray.

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Things You'll Need

  • Wire cutters
  • Pliers
  • Thin steel wire

About the Author

Lauren Vork has been a writer for 20 years, writing both fiction and nonfiction. Her work has appeared in "The Lovelorn" online magazine and Vork holds a bachelor's degree in music performance from St. Olaf College.

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