Back to Ask Debbie Questions »

Pat T.

Dear Debbie,

I am looking for your recommendations to protect my new 4-board wood fence. Obviously, electric wire is a great option, but what is the recommendation on how many strands and what type of wire/tape? How far off the fence should it be; several inches or placed close to the boards? Since I do have a great visual barrier for my horses, I would like the electric protection to be as invisible as possible. Please let me know what your recommendations are. Pat

Pat T.

Hi Pat,

Thank you for your email. Yes, I agree with you that electric is a wonderful way to protect your board fence. It would be great to know what kind of horses you have, how many, and how hard they are on your fence, but I still can give you some food for thought. Depending on where you live (windy area, rocky ground, vs. normal conditions), your electric fence choice may be based on these issues. Tape works well if you're not in a high wind area or in open territory. It's easy to install, hand-tensioned, and very economical.

Electric coated wire is wonderful for any area and it has a great amount of break strength. I personally like it because it will flex up to six inches on impact and come back to its original shape. This is a tensioned fence however, and needs the end and corner posts concreted and braced. Braid and twine are other great electric fence systems. They are hand-tensioned fences and I personally feel that they work very well with an existing fence system. My most important point is to choose a safer alternative to wire. I feel any of the new electric fences are better than plain, bare wire.

The number of strands depends on what you feel your horses need. Some horses only lean over the fence, and in this case a top rail would work. Sometimes a middle strand will act as a good deterrent as it will hit the horse at chest level and send the signal to stay away. If your horses eat under the rail, the bottom needs a strand. One strand or the combination of any of these will work for your horses. Stand out insulators are available. They come in different lengths depending on how far you feel your horses need to be kept from your existing fence. These are 4" and 6", and longer if needed. Again, this decision would be based on your horses and how much they lean on your fence. Standard insulators that are close to the fence do the job for most horses, but you may prefer the stand out type.

We have several types of electric fence systems available in white, black and brown. If you are looking for something that will not be as noticeable, our black insulators that are placed next to the fence will blend and be non-obtrusive with your board fence. Please feel free to email or call with any other questions. You have the right idea, you will not only be helping to give better security to your horses, but also you will protect your investment in your board.

Debbie

Back to Ask Debbie Questions »