Well, when the DoD put in the jet fuel pipeline to BNAS,
(now NASB, for some reason) they used 4 chunks of what looks
like #2 rebar, and made square, slightly tapered monoliths
shaped like the washington monument, about 6' tall, and planted
them about 30" deep. Those have lasted longer than I've been
alive, with only some spalling where they whack them with a
batwing mower. Depending on relative costs, I'd do that,
or use a cylinder of hardware cloth.
How long do you want the fence to last? How sturdy are the steel posts?
I would go with treated wood myself.
Also remember that unless the privacy fence is 10 feet high, it only
hides the criminals from pubic view. Your choice.
steel is much more forgiving of a bad installation and will ultimately last
the longest, but properly done the wood will last a long time. make sure
you put a point at the top of the posts so water can drain off. if you
leave it flat it will greatly shorten the life of the posts.
Define exactly what "better" means to you. It is a very personal term.
Wood is "better" at some things steel at others. Quality (another of
those personal terms) ranges of both produces means some steel will be
"better" than some other steel as will wood.
I suggest you consider that most residential fencing today is wood. I
suggest you check your local codes and deed restrictions and you may find
that you must use wood.
Assuming you're referring to galvanized steel posts, the steel will last
longer. If left unpainted, they generally detract from the warmth and effect of
a wood privacy fence.
Wood posts will last a lot longer if they're set in holes and backfilled with
fine gravel, rather than the soil excavated from the same hole, or concrete.
Every fence post I've replaced rotted at the base where it meets the ground.
Consider this....get the vertical posts that are use with chain link
fencing, they don't rust and the metal is soft enough to run a self tapping
screw into. Set these posts in concrete, then wrap(attach with screws) the
posts with a 2x4 on opposite sides where the fencing will be and a 1x6 on
the face side. Attach your continuous fencing to the 2x4. This will give you
the look of a wood post but the life of metal. Have built fences with wood
posts set in concrete and also the way i just described. My next fence will
again use the wrapped metal posts. period. my $.02.........bob
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