Staining a Wooden Fence vs. Painting One

The image of a home handyman painting a wooden fence is almost iconic, but painting a wooden fence doesn’t always offer the best results.

Instead, we recommend a good oil-based stain.

Why paint or stain a wooden fence at all?

Natural wood is indeed beautiful, especially when it’s new. Nevertheless, wood is wood. Even the highest quality wood is prone to rot, sun damage, and insects when it sits outside unprotected. 

Always remember that the primary purpose of staining or painting a fence is to protect it. Everything else is secondary. We recommend staining the fence at least once a year.

When you stain the fence, you can just pressure wash it and reapply the stain every year. When you paint it, you’ll have to scrape and sand until all the peeling paint is gone, pressure wash it, and then repaint the fence. You might have to do that twice a year. 

Stain is definitely the big winner if you want to reduce your “honey-dos.”

Why stain instead of paint?

Wood doesn’t absorb paint very well. When you paint wood, you end up with a big mess, sometimes in less than a year. Paint chips and peels, especially in harsh weather.

Plus, paint is often so thick that it hides the wood grain, making your fence look cheap and unnatural. You’ve invested in a gorgeous, real wood fence. Why not show off the wood?

What kinds of color options are available with stain?

Many people believe they can only use “woody” colors if they choose a stain. While it’s true you’ll find more options in natural colors, you can also find pink, blue, green, gold, purple, and red wooden stains. If you like natural colors, you don’t even have to go crazy; you can just use a transparent or semi-transparent stain instead. 

While you might not have as many options as you might have if you’d gone to paint, you’ll generally have enough to support nearly any kind of garden decor you want to create. Just make sure you talk to your HOA first—many of them get uptight about certain colors. 

Ultimately, the lady out front measuring your grass may have more of a say in what color your fence ends up as than the availability of your colors, which means you lose the major advantage of going to paint anyway.

Do you need a replacement fence?

Eventually, wood fences succumb to the elements even if you take good care of them.

When that happens, consider choosing us as your wooden fencing installation company. We use high-quality wood and our building expertise to build long-lasting wood fences you’ll be proud to have on your property. Ready to get started? Contact our office today!

3 Benefits of a Wrought Iron Fence

You’ve got a lot to think about when determining the best fence for your home or business. You need to think about the amount of time you have to devote to the fence, what you want to use the fence for, and, of course, the ultimate aesthetics of the fence.

While a wrought iron fence isn’t the best choice for everyone, there are significant benefits that make it the perfect choice for many. Here are three reasons why you should consider making your next fence a wrought iron fence.

#1) Beauty

Even a plain wrought iron fence is a gorgeous, traditional option for your home. Yet one of the benefits of wrought iron is that the fence may be fashioned into any number of gorgeous designs.

If you would like to adorn your property with customized, ornamented fencing, wrought iron is the choice.

#2) Durability

Shopping for longevity? Wrought iron can last up to 50 years if properly maintained. Proper maintenance means keeping them clean and guarding them from rust.

Even so, most wrought iron fences only need attention every six months to one year, ensuring you’ll have plenty of time to tackle everything else on your plate.

This makes them a great choice for homeowners and business owners who don’t want to spend a lot of time fussing with their fence but who nevertheless want a lot of value for their investment.

#3) Security

Build a tall enough wrought iron fence, and potential miscreants will find it very difficult to bypass, especially when combined with one of our automatic gates.

They’re smooth and difficult to climb. You can also adorn the top of the fence with spikes or other decorations that offer both aesthetic benefits and protective ones. This benefit can be especially important when using your fence to protect a swimming pool, as it does a good job of discouraging children and teens from climbing your fence to play in the pool.

If providing your property, family, or business with security is the primary reason why you’re building a fence, then you’ll want to seriously consider the wrought-iron option.


Ready to install your wrought iron fence?

At Lone Star Fence and Construction, we’re well known for the workmanship and beauty of our custom railings and wrought iron fences.

If you’re ready to invest in a gorgeous new fence that will last for decades, call (832) 925-3347 to schedule a quote.

How to Clean a Vinyl Fence

A vinyl fence is a relatively durable and low-maintenance fencing option, but you’ll still need to clean it at least once a year to keep it looking new.

Dirt can leave your fence looking dingy, and algae and mildew can grow on fences if you give it enough time. Plus, vinyl fences can take some outdoor wear and tear from normal activities.

Fortunately, the job isn’t too difficult!

Basic Principles

When cleaning a vinyl fence, remember:

  1. Never pressure wash a vinyl fence, as high-pressure water can damage it.
  2. Use mild soaps or natural cleaners like vinegar whenever and wherever possible. Baking soda is often a good go-to if you have a tough spot you need to address.
  3. A scrub-brush attachment can make the job go a lot faster.
  4. There is no need to waste money on special vinyl cleansers of any kind.

Most people will find the job to be a quick and easy one that even a child can do. Heck, on a hot summer day, a child might even enjoy the task if you’re willing to let them get wet playing with the hose!

Cleaning Dirt from a Vinyl Fence

Barkeeper’s Friend can remove tire marks from a mower if biodegradable soap isn’t working, but you’ll want to spot-clean the mark as gently as possible.

Barkeeper’s Friend is abrasive, which is why it’s so effective at removing tire marks. However, if you use it too vigorously, you risk damaging your grass.

How to clean vinyl fence

Cleaning Algae, Mold, and Mildew from a Vinyl Fence

Algae, mold, and mildew can form big, unsightly green patches on vinyl fencing. Vinegar, water, and a good scrub brush are often effective solutions.

If the patch is especially tough, a solution made with OxyClean or a similar oxygen cleaner product may give you the extra power you need to get rid of the growth.

Need to replace your vinyl fence?

A vinyl fence can last up to 30 years when properly maintained. If you don’t have one yet, or are thinking about getting one, or need to replace an existing vinyl fence, why not call us?

We’ll give you a quick, accurate quote and a quality install that meets your fence needs and goals.

5 Mistakes Houston Homeowners Make When Ordering a New Fence 

Adding a fence to your property can add up to $4,000 to the total value of your home, but only if you do it right. 

If you make certain mistakes, your new fence can become an expensive problem. 

Here are five mistakes some Houston companies make. 

#1) Failing to research the property line.

If you don’t know exactly where your property line is, you could end up in real trouble. If you accidentally build over the line, your neighbor can demand that you rip out the fence. 

It’s best to build the fence just inside the legal line to avoid problems. You can also build right on the boundary, but in either case, having evidence of the legal property line can save you a world of trouble.

#2) Failing to understand permit requirements.

Different townships have different requirements. For example, Houston only requires you to get a permit if your fence is going to be higher than 8 feet tall or if you live within the flood plain. Houston also has certain requirements for fences that are going to be adjacent to intersections.

Sugar Land, Pearland, Friendswood, Galveston, and League City, Texas may have their own requirements. Don’t forget that your HOA may have special requirements, too.

Of course, when you work with a qualified professional like the team at Lone Star Fence, we help you pull the necessary permits and stay within the boundaries of the local regulations. 

#3) Failing to talk to the neighbor. 

Houston residents are, by and large, independent people with strong opinions about property rights. You may be forgiven for feeling like your property is your property, and you should be able to do whatever you want with it.

Unfortunately, an unhappy neighbor can still create a lot of problems. They can take passive-aggressive actions to damage your fence. They can cost money by challenging your fence legally, even if you’re within your rights.

Discussing your fence with your neighbor ensures that good feelings will abound and ensures you can enjoy your fence peacefully. 

#4) Buying the wrong fence.

If you want the maximum amount of privacy, you want a wood or a masonry fence; a wrought iron or chain link fence won’t meet your needs.

Consider why you want the fence, and make the choice based on your needs rather than on the price of materials or any other factor.

#5) Attempting a DIY installation.

If you want a long-lasting, durable, sturdy fence, then attempting a DIY installation will lead you in the wrong direction. If you’re not already a carpenter or contractor, there’s a good chance that the fence will be unattractive. Plus, the cheap materials that come in standard fence kits get damaged quite easily.

You don’t save much money in the long run if you have to replace that fence in two years. Get a long-lasting fence from a fence contractor, and you’ll get to enjoy the results for many years. 

Get Help Today 

Ready to place a fence on your property? Reach out to Lone Star Fence & Construction to schedule a free quote today!

Annual Care Tips for Your Wooden Fence

Wooden fences need TLC if they’re going to continue to look amazing. At a minimum, they need annual care in the summers.

Wood is wood—even the best wood is prone to rot, mold, mildew, and grime. Protecting wood from moisture damage and mold is the goal of most of our summer care.

Here are the steps you should take as soon as the weather gets warm.

Annual Inspection

Summer is the ideal time to check the entire fence. You should check for sagging fence posts, leaning fence posts, and general damage. 

If you need a repair, it’s a good time to contact us. Depending on how the fence was built, we may be able to replace a panel or a post without replacing the entire fence.

Pressure Washing

Pressure washing can help your fence look brand new. You’ll be removing peeling paint or old stain. You’ll be blasting grime, mold, and mildew away. The entire process will seem like it ought to come straight out of an episode of Oddly Satisfying. 

Start by creating a cleaning solution. Add ¼ cup of bleach and ¼ cup of laundry detergent to your pressure washer tank for every gallon of water in the tank. 

Choose a 25-degree tip to avoid damaging your fence. Smaller tips can cut the wood, and larger tips won’t be very effective. 

Now you can spray, working in long lines from top to bottom. You want to be careful to follow the grain of the wood. Once you’ve sprayed every plank, sweep the bottom of the fence to catch any lingering debris. 

If you find particularly stubborn stains, add the brush attachment to your fence to scrub them away. 

Staining or Painting

Either staining or painting can protect your fence, but we don’t recommend painting. Paint tends to peel over time, and it doesn’t hold up as well in Houston’s wet, humid, hot weather. 

A good oil-based stain will help your fence remain moisture-resistant. You’ll still get to choose from a wide variety of stain colors, and you’ll bring out the natural beauty of the wood.

Finish your stain with a good sealant to add an extra layer of protection. 

Is it time to replace your fence?

Wooden fences really only last 7 to 10 years, even if you have the best-built fence in the world. If your fence is getting old, it may be time to replace the fence entirely.

If so, reach out to Lone Star Fence. Our team will help you custom-build a gorgeous new wooden fence for your property.

Either way, contact us! We’ll be happy to go over your options and to give you a quote.