• Is it Better to Paint or Stain a Fence?

    If you’re thinking about installing a new wood fence, you might have questions about the finish. While you can choose to leave your fence bare, this may shorten its lifespan. Over time, an unfinished wood fence could warp, twist, split or develop mold. To protect it from the elements, consider either painting or staining your fence. You may also want to consider alternatives to wood fencing if you prefer to do neither.

    Painting a Fence

    Years ago when stain options were limited, paint was the obvious choice. However, painting requires a lot of maintenance, and these days, there are numerous ways to get just the right look with stain.

    If you decide to paint your fence, expect it to start cracking and peeling after just a few years, depending on the quality of the paint you choose. When the time comes to repaint your fence, you have to scrape off the existing color, prep the surface and then apply the new paint. This takes a great deal of time and costs more in the long run.

    Staining a Fence

    Most of the time, staining is better than painting a fence. It’s true that stain eventually fades and must be reapplied, but not for several years. Also, because stain doesn’t peel or crack, it requires less preparation than repainting. Simply power wash the fence to produce a clean, prepped surface for staining. Stain often costs more than paint upfront, but because you don’t have to re-stain nearly as often, the long-term cost is lower.

    Stain comes in many different shades and transparencies. Some are clear, which provide waterproofing and protection for your fence without changing its color. Then, some are semi-transparent. They darken the wood but still allow the grain to show through, emphasizing its natural beauty. Others are more opaque, mimicking the appearance of a painted fence without nearly as much maintenance.

    Other Options

    If you want the look of a traditional white picket fence, but you don’t want to repaint it every few years, vinyl fencing is a low-maintenance alternative. Vinyl never needs to be stained, painted or maintained beyond a quick cleaning with a hose. White is the classic color for vinyl fences, but it’s certainly not your only option.

    Ornamental and chain link fences are other options for your property. These provide another way to enclose your yard with minimal maintenance required.

    Paramount Fence Inc installs wood, vinyl, ornamental and chain link fences in Chicago. Each material is available in various finishes and styles based on your preferences. We have been in business for over ten years, and our team boasts more than 50 years of combined industry experience. Let us help you make the right selection for your home or business. For additional information about the finishing options for wood fences – or to learn more about fencing that never needs to be painted or stained – please call us at (630) 239-2714 or contact us online today.

  • How to Weatherproof Fences

    Has your fence made it through winter so far? Are you leery of the wet spring to come? If you’re starting to see signs that your fence is cracking, warping or rotting, it’s not too late to act! Just follow these tips on how to weatherproof fences.

    Weatherproofing a Wood Fence

    • Shore up weak points: Walk along both sides of the fence and look for any spots that need maintenance. Hammer in loose nails, drive in new screws, replace decaying posts and prop up damaged pickets. Getting your fence to stand tall and straight is the first step toward making it more resilient in inclement weather.
    • Apply a waterproofing sealant: You have three options for waterproofing a wood fence. The first is to apply a silicone or acrylic sealant to protect against water, extreme temperatures and UV rays. Colored sealant darkens light wood while clear sealant brings out its natural beauty.
    • Apply moisture-resistant paint: The second waterproofing option is to paint your fence with latex or alkyd-based paint. These are available in many colors and glosses to provide the look you want. Just be sure to read labels carefully to ensure you purchase paint designed for this application.
    • Apply a wax polish: The final waterproofing option is to wax the fence with colored, pine or clear wax. Each type repels dirt, dust and grit with varying aesthetic effects. You can apply wax to wood fences finished with varnish, shellac or oil-based paint.
    • Clear away leaves and debris: When organic materials stay in contact with your fence for an extended period, they promote rot and insect problems. Rake away leaves and other debris regularly throughout the season to prevent this.
    • Trim back low-hanging branches: Heavy snow or a strong gust of wind could snap a branch and send it plummeting to the ground. Protect your fence by removing any low-hanging branches that loom over it.

    Weatherproofing Other Types of Fences

    For wrought iron fences, rust is your biggest problem. If your fence is already rusty, brush off the flakes. Then, apply weatherproof wax or anti-rust paint to help water roll off the metal instead of sticking to it and making it rust. For a more maintenance-free ornamental fence, consider one made of aluminum or steel instead.

    PVC and chain link fences are naturally weather-resistant, so all you must do is clean them occasionally with a hose and stiff brush. This removes dirt, stains and debris to help protect the beauty and extend the lifespan of your fence.

    If your fence is too degraded to be restored with these weatherproofing tips, consider springing for a new fence when winter is over. Paramount Fence Inc is a full-service fence sales and installation company serving clients in the Chicago area. We’re dedicated to helping you design and install a beautiful, long-lasting fence around your home or commercial property. To learn more about our services, please call us at (630) 239-2714 or contact us online.

  • Are rodents, insects and wildlife an issue on your property? If you’re reluctant to share your outdoor living space with these pests, you need a few techniques to keep them at bay. Here’s how the proper type of fencing can help keep your backyard pest-free.

    Cedar Fencing Repels Pests

    It’s common knowledge that cedar furniture can protect your wool sweaters from moths, but have you considered that this type of wood can also serve as natural pest control for your backyard? Western red cedar fencing emits aromatic phenols and acids that smell pleasant to humans but repel mosquitoes, fleas, ants, mites, moths and rodents.

    To ensure you don’t seal in the beneficial phenols, avoid painting or staining cedar fences. Don’t worry – its natural ability to resist rot and decay helps cedar fencing last, even without chemical treatments.

    A Privacy Fence Deters Wildlife

    When it comes to keeping wild animals out of your yard, one effective method is to prevent them from seeing in. A standard six-foot privacy fence deters many types of critters from entering your yard.

    For instance, deer rarely jump a fence when they can’t see what’s on the other side. A tall fence also reduces the chance of dogs, skunks, coyotes and other animals from wandering onto your property. If you install a privacy fence made of western red cedar, you can also enjoy the benefit of keeping insects and rodents at bay.

    A Chain Link Fence Protects Your Garden

    Are rabbits, chipmunks or squirrels wreaking havoc on your meticulously planted vegetable garden? If you want to watch your plants grow while still keeping rodents at bay, a chain link fence is a great choice.

    Be aware that many animals can dig under traditional fences, so you may want to bury a footer made of galvanized wire mesh under your fence. The footer should extend at least eight inches below the surface to prevent determined critters from getting where they’re not wanted.

    Vinyl Fencing is Unaffected by Pests

    While vinyl is equally effective as other fence materials at keeping pests out of your yard, they offer an added benefit: vinyl fencing doesn’t provide food for termites. Since vinyl is a type of plastic, insects aren’t interested in eating it. As a result, even if you do have pests on your property, the fencing won’t show signs of deterioration.

    Paramount Fence Inc can help you keep your backyard pest-free with the right type of fencing. We serve customers across the Chicago area with creative and affordable solutions that are designed to stand the test of time. After over ten years in business, and with more than 50 years of combined industry experience, our reputation for excellence precedes us. If you’re interested in our services, or you want more help selecting the right fence for your property, please call us at (630) 239-2714 or contact us online.

  • Best Yard Privacy Tips

    Suburban homes continue to be built on increasingly smaller lots, even as the demand grows for outdoor living areas. When your neighbors’ homes overlook your yard, it’s easy to feel as though you live in a fishbowl. Whether your goal is to avoid prying eyes or shield your view of the neighbors’ activities, you need a way to create privacy. Here are some tips to inspire you.

    Install a Privacy Fence

    For the best results, choose a privacy fence without spaces between the boards. Base the height on the slope of your yard and the surrounding properties, remembering to account for municipal ordinances in your neighborhood. If you don’t want a tall fence all the way around your yard, you can install one with a stair-step design that only includes taller sections where you need them.

    Soften the Appearance of a Privacy Fence

    While it solves your problem, a traditional privacy fence may not be the most aesthetically pleasing option. Fortunately, you can break up the solidity of a board fence by including a decorative lattice or baluster top. If you have room for them in your yard, adding planter boxes, shrubs or climbing vines softens the fence with a little greenery as well.

    Extend Your Privacy Above the Fence

    Did the neighbors recently build a second-story deck with views straight into your yard? Help block that view by planting a tall tree or two in front of your privacy fence. This way, you have privacy at ground level as well as from onlookers with a second-story vantage point.

    Add Privacy Slats to Existing Fences

    Perhaps you already have a chain link fence to keep your dog confined to the yard, but this does little to prevent your nosy neighbors from peering into your yard. Privacy slats are an affordable upgrade that eliminates the need to replace your entire fence.

    Plant Privacy Hedges

    Dense, evergreen shrubs provide year-round privacy for your yard. While they’re typically not restricted to building code heights the way fences are, remember that it will take years for the plants to grow to a desirable size.

    Set Up Trellises, Pergolas and Privacy Panels

    It might not be possible to screen your entire yard, but you can shield the patio, deck or outdoor kitchen with a combination of trellises, pergolas and privacy panels. These provide a partially enclosed area for protection against the elements and prying eyes while still allowing you to enjoy the beautiful weather. Climbing vines, potted plants and other greenery complete the oasis.

    For privacy fence installation in Chicago, look to Paramount Fence Inc. Our full-service fence sales and installation company has been in business for over ten years, and our team boasts more than 50 years of combined industry experience. Let us help you design and install a beautiful, high-quality privacy fence around your property. For more information about how we can serve you, please call us at (630) 239-2714 or contact us online today.

  • Why can’t fences be over a certain height

    Your home is your castle, right? And if you want to surround that castle with a 20-foot fence, or a wall, or a moat full of alligators, that’s your prerogative, right? Well, not exactly. Just about everywhere, there are rules and regulations that limit the construction of fencing, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, there are some very good reasons why you can’t build fences above a certain height.

    So what’s the right height for a fence? Most places, artificial fences can only be four feet tall in front yards, and six feet tall in back yards. This varies, depending on your city, county, or subdivision regulations. Sometimes, height restrictions apply to natural barriers as well, like fences or rows of trees, but they’re usually a little less restrictive: typically five to eight feet. In some circumstances, you can apply for a variance and receive a one-time exception to the law. Additionally, if the fence was there before the rule, it can typically stay there.

    Why does anyone care about the height of someone else’s fence? To begin with, just because you build a fence doesn’t mean you’re the only one it impacts. A fence that’s too high can disrupt your neighbors’ daily lives by blocking light and airflow to their homes and yards. It can interfere with the success of their gardening or block their view.

    What’s more, a fence that obstructs a driver’s view of oncoming traffic, it can be a true safety hazard. So even though you might want to build a big fence to block your view of a busy road, the authorities will have to take into account how your fence will affect people driving on the road. That’s one reason front yard fences must be lower. Interfering with someone’s view of the road or, worse, children playing in or near the road could have disastrous consequences.

    So what do you do if your neighbor has put up a fence that’s bothering you? If your neighbor’s fence is just unsightly, you may not have any recourse. If it’s too tall, built of prohibited material, dangerous, or ill-maintained, you can make a complaint to the subdivision’s homeowners association or to the city. It’s nice, though, to talk to your neighbor first. It’s possible that the neighbor was unaware of the regulations, and may be willing to come to an agreement with you about modifying the fence. Just make sure that when it comes time for you to put up a new fence, you acquaint yourself with the applicable rules before you get started.

    If you’re ready for your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.

  • What should you know before painting a fence

    Is it time to paint your fence? Aside from making it look more attractive, a fresh coat of paint or stain on a fence can help protect it from the elements. It’s a big job, but if you know when and how to do it, you can easily paint your fence yourself.

    You’ll probably notice when your fence needs repainting. It will start to look weathered and worn, and you might start to see some areas with significant damage. You should probably repaint your fence every two to three years, but the main thing to look for is moisture. The right paint or stain will prevent moisture damage, and you can check to see if it’s still working by looking at it after a rainfall. Is the water beading up on the surface or has it soaked in? If it’s soaking in, it’s time for a fresh coat.

    When the time comes, do you know what kind of finish you want to use? The choice between paint and stain is largely subjective, so you can do whatever you think will look best and weather well. Painting is less expensive but needs to be touched up more frequently. Staining is less expensive per gallon, but you’ll need more stain than paint, so the job will end up costing more. However, because stain fades rather than chipping, you won’t have to redo it as often.

    Once you’ve done your homework and chosen the right paint or stain, it’s time to get started. Before you start the job, ask a friend or neighbor for help- do this well in advance so they have plenty of notice. Plan to work on a day with good weather, when temperatures are moderate and humidity is low. Make sure you have all the equipment you need, then follow these steps to complete the job.

    • Properly prepare the fence. Remove old pieces of paint and any dirt, using a scraper or a pressure washer. It’s important to have a clean surface so that the paint will adhere properly. Scraping is the most effective way to remove stuck on paint and debris, but using a pressure washer in short bursts can knock off loose paint. Wash the fence with a hose once you’re done scraping, and allow it to dry completely before beginning to paint.
    • Time to prime. Protect the area around the fence with plastic sheeting, and then apply a primer. Priming the fence is important because it protects the wood and creates a better surface for adherence. Make sure the primer is completely dry before you apply any paint.
    • When it’s time to paint, you can use a brush, roller, or spray gun. It’s a good idea to start with the top trim and horizontal pieces, then move on to the pickets. Use sweeping strokes to apply the paint evenly, and then finish off with a clear coat to protect your paint from the elements.

    Of course, there are some problems that can’t be fixed with a new coat of paint. If your fence has been attacked by pests like termites, you’re better off getting a new one. And while some fences can be spruced up with just a few replacement boards, if more than 25 percent of the boards need repair it’s probably time to go ahead and spring for a new fence.

    If you’re ready for your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.

  • Things to Consider About Getting a Fence When You Have a Pet

    If you have a pet and a yard, it’s only logical to want to put up a fence. A fenced yard is a wonderful place for pets, especially dogs, to enjoy nature and have the freedom to run and play. Before you go to the expense of having a fence installed, though, you’ll want to make sure it’s a good fit for your pet.

    • Cats and fences are a tricky thing. Let’s just get this out of the way right off the bat: cats are not easily contained by a fence. They’re expert jumpers and love to be higher than the people, so the fence height you’d have to achieve in order to keep them from scaling it is probably not within your zoning code. The solution? There are fences on the market that curve inward at the top, using a flexible material that causes cats to bounce off, rather than being able to climb. You can also choose an invisible fence that causes a mild shock if your cat wanders outside its parameters. Your best bet, though, may be a cat run, fully enclosed to allow your pet to experience the outdoors without being free to roam the neighborhood.
    • Dogs are a different story. Dogs are fairly easy to fence in, as long as you consider their abilities and choose a fence they can’t conquer.
      • If your dog is a jumper, figure out how high he or she can jump and then choose a fence a few inches higher than that.
      • If your dog can climb, get a fence with a smooth surface and rollers at the top.
      • Do you have a digger? This is trickier but not insurmountable. Install a fence that extends a foot or two below the ground, and your dog won’t be able to tunnel out.
      • Some dogs just break the fence. They might do this by body-slamming it or chewing through it, but if you choose durable materials like wrought iron or brick, it won’t be a problem.
      • Can your dog open gates? Install a padlock.
    • Aesthetics are a factor, too. Your fence has a major impact on the look of your property, so even if you’re putting in a fence because of your pets, make sure it’s appealing to humans as well. Take care not to allow the fence to obstruct your view or prevent your plants from getting the right amount of sunlight, and make sure the fence fits with the overall look of your property.
    • Who should you be excluding? Fences don’t just keep your pet in, they also keep other animals out. Consider the type of wildlife in your area and plan your fence accordingly.

    If you’re ready for your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.

  • How to Deal with your Neighbors when Getting a New Fence

    Most of the things you do to improve your home don’t require approval from other people. If you want to touch up the paint on your eaves, repaint your kitchen, or plant a garden in your back yard, that’s your personal business. For some projects, though, you need to be considerate of others. You’ll need to consider the rules of your neighborhood, for example, if you want to paint your home an unusual color. Installing a fence is one of those improvements that have an impact on your neighbors, but do you really need to run it by them before you put in your fence? Not necessarily, but there are some guidelines you should follow before erecting any barriers.

    • Some things are absolute “musts” when you’re putting in a fence. Common sense dictates that you have to make sure you know your property boundaries and HOA rules before you hire a company to put in your new fence. There are some things the fencing company will handle, like knowing local zoning regulations and obtaining permits. Knowing the rules of your neighborhood, though, is your responsibility.
    • It’s nice to share. Don’t surprise your neighbors with a fence, unless you’re looking for conflict. It’s smarter to talk to them about it ahead of time, making sure no property line disputes exist and letting them know what you’re planning.
    • Make sure things look nice. Put in a fence that’s sturdy and attractive, with the more finished side toward the street and your neighbor’s yard. As time passes, be sure to keep it clean and well-maintained.
    • Sometimes, the neighbors should be even more involved. In some states, neighbors are required to share the cost of installing a fence, as well as the responsibility for maintaining it. When you’re making your plans for a fence, that’s something you should look into by looking into local laws on fencing permits.

    If you’re ready for your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.

  • Why winter is a good time to have a fence installed

    Many of us don’t think about having work done in our yards in the winter time, but some outdoor chores are better done when the weather’s cool. If you’ve been putting off fence installation until the spring, for instance, you might want to rethink your schedule. There are plenty of good reasons to install a new fence when the weather is cool.

    • Contractors aren’t as busy in the winter. This means it may be easier to find someone to do the work, and you may even be offered a discounted cost for the labor. The job also may be finished more quickly, because contractors will often commit a larger crew to the project when they’re not stretched too thin by other projects.
    • Work done in the winter is easier on your plants. When most of your landscape has gone dormant, your plants are less likely to be damaged if they need to be relocated or trimmed back. What’s more, the grass won’t be as dramatically affected by equipment and a work crew in the winter. Then, too, you’ll know if anything needs to be replaced well in advance of spring, so you can get it planted early and well-established by summer.
    • When you get the work done in the winter, you’ll be better able to enjoy the spring. Having your new fence installed in the winter means that by spring, you’ll be able to truly relax and enjoy your improved yard. You can even invite friends and family to join you, without having to postpone until the new fence is finished.

    If you’re ready to get a jump on your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.

  • How to Tell if it is Time for a Fence Replacement

    Putting in a fence is a big investment, so most homeowners try to keep their fences standing for as long as possible. With time, though, even the most well-maintained fence will need to be replaced. How can you tell if it’s time for a new fence?

    • Your fence has started leaning. As time passes, your fence will start to weaken and lean. This can make it vulnerable, especially in seasons of punishing wind and rain. You can adjust the fence posts to temporarily fix this, but it’s likely that the fence is already damaged to a point that requires replacement.
    • The signs of rot are visible. One of the first signs that your fence needs to be replaced is rot. Wood is very vulnerable to rot, and once decay begins, the fence can deteriorate quickly. Sometimes you can catch it quickly enough to replace a section of the fence, but it’s often spotted too late to reverse the damage.
    • When the wood changes color, it’s time to replace the fence. Especially if the wood hasn’t been properly preserved, wooden fencing can discolor because of sun, rust, or fading paint. You may be able to treat it for a temporary fix, but it is unlikely that you can restore it to its original state.
    • If some of the panels go missing, it’s best to replace the whole thing. There’s really no point to a fence that’s missing panels, because it no longer does what it’s meant to do, whether that’s keeping pets and children in, keeping people and animals out, or providing privacy or security. You can replace one panel, but the problem can reoccur if you don’t replace the whole fence.
    • Other visible signs of wear and tear mean it’s time to replace the fence. You can maintain it, repair it, and replace missing parts, but the wear and tear of everyday life eventually runs down your fence. Eventually, the maintenance costs will build up and be more expensive than replacement, so if you’re doing frequent repairs, it’s time to consider replacing the fence.
    • Sometimes you simply no longer like the fence. If it doesn’t fit with the aesthetics of your home and garden, it’s perfectly fine to decide to replace the fence. Your fence doesn’t have to be in disrepair to be replaced, you can switch it out just to update the look of your

    If you’re ready for your new fence, call Paramount Fence Inc for professional installation. At Paramount, we’ve been in business for over ten years, but our combined experience in the fence industry spans more than half a century! We’re a full-service fence sales and fence installation business in the Chicagoland area, and we’re dedicated to providing creative and affordable solutions that address our clients’ needs and fulfill their requests. Our staff offers exceptional customer service, striving to exceed your expectations throughout the fence buying and fence installation process. We provide high-quality, beautiful fences, and our reputation for excellence is well-established. Paramount Fence Inc is a member of the American Fence Association and a registered member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information on how we can help you find the right fence to meet your needs, call us at 630.239.2714 or contact us through our website.