Pine, cedar, and heart redwood (notice that's _heart_ redwood) are all
fine woods for fences. Pine should last you 10 years unpainted. Keep it
painted, and it will last indefinitly. My dad built his own heart
redwood fence when I was a baby, and I just replaced some posts that
rotted out after fifty years. He's in New Mexico, with similar weather
to you. Redwood costs maybe three times as much as pine. Cedar is in
the middle somewhere.
Before you pick your contractor, _insist_ on seeing some of his work.
If you go with Lowes or Home Depot, make sure the work is by the guy
they send you. Fences are simple to build, so the quality is in the
* The top of the fence should be a straight, level line (unless it
needs to follow the terrain, in which case it should be a nice curve).
* Gates should be sturdy and straight, and they should swing easily.
All gates sag over time, but they shouldn't drag when new.
* The panels should be vertical.
* Use steel posts instead wood. The steel posts don't rot. That's not
a huge concern in AZ, but it still happens. Wood posts also warp,
making your fence lean.
* Pet Peeve: Make the contractor cut the tops off the posts short
enough that they don't show above the fence.
On Sat 19 Jul 2008 08:11:46p, Wayne Boatwright told us...
Following up on my own post to thank all of you for your experience and
advice. I have had my doubts about the contracting and workmanship issues
with Home Depot and Lowes. Reading your posts pretty much confirms that I
won't use them.
As to carpeting, we had extremely good luck with Home Depot and the
installers they used. But, then, that's not a fence. :-)
I'll check out several fence companies and get some bids.
Thanks again to all of you who commented!
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