Friday 29 November 2013

S’no(w) joke if your fence collapses ….

Reports from long range weather forecasters warning us that Britain should prepare for heavy and
persistent snow and the worst winter for more than 60 years is enough to make anyone shiver! But with predictions of above average snowfall and plunging temperatures, it makes sense to act now to ensure your fencing and gates are up to the challenge of coping with such extreme conditions.

Although pretty enough depicting a Christmas scene, fences and gates topped with snowfall are far from festive if the end result is rotting timber and dropped gates!

It’s not just fencing that is likely to be affected by adverse weather – keeping a vehicle outside during the colder months is far from ideal but the new Timber Car Port from Jacksons will protect your car from the elements – and you’ll never have to waste precious time scraping the ice off your windows again.

Phone us now on 01233 750 393 or visit to get your outdoor space ready to fight the freeze!

Post and Rail Fence in the snow
Jacksons Post & Rail in the Snow

Wednesday 27 November 2013

What Makes A Good Fence?

Cheap Broken Lap Panel fence
A cheap lap panel fence

No one really looks forward to replacing an old fence.  It can be a difficult task, first planning the materials needed and where the fence will run.  The installation of the fence is the next step, which is not a simple task either and these factors don't even include the cost of the whole project.

Here are a few points to consider that could help the whole venture run a little more smoothly and boost the life of the new fence:

The quality of the materials
Usually if the materials used in the fence are of good quality, then the overall fence will not only stand the test of time but also will look good.

The expected length of life
Often the cost outweighs the life span of fencing when purchasing decisions are made.  Everyone is looking for a bargain but in the long run, replacing a cheap and cheerful fence two or three times works out a great deal more expensive than choosing a superior fence in the first place. 
One of the most important factors that increase the life span of a fence is the treatment of the timber.  If a fence has not been treated well, then it will rot and fall over or rot and break.

Concave Fence Panel
A Jacksons Concave Featherboard Panel showing three rails.
The integrity of the construction of the materials
If a fence panel is constructed using thin pales or weak support battens/rails then the fence is unlikely to last a strong storm.  If only two rails are used to create a six foot Featherboard fence panel rather than three rails, it's clear that the fence panel will not be as strong.
The correct fence for the job

It is obvious that a garden fence will not be as secure as a security fence, or a garden fence won't do the job of equine Post and Rail fencing but it's worth looking around if the fence required is providing a unique solution. 
When you have decided which type of fence is required, its then worth looking at the style.  An example of this would be the installation of a garden fence in an area exposed to strong wind and the best style of fence for the job;  Hit and Miss or Woven if privacy is needed or Paliframe and Venetian if privacy is not an issue and all of these styles of fence would allow some wind to pass through.

The Fence Installation
Do you pay for a skilled labourer which costs money, or do-it-yourself?  It doesn't matter as long as the installation is a good one.  Remember no matter how good the fence is, it needs to be installed well to withstand strong winds and harsh weather.
Don't skimp when digging holes, using Postcrete/cement to hold posts in place or using shorter posts than required as all these shortcuts will be more hassle in the long run than to do the job well in the first place.  See "A Good Fence Needs Good Foundations" for more information.

For more fence advice visit

A Quality Fence
A Quality Fence

Monday 21 October 2013

Can a Garden Gate be installed on a slope or hill?

It is possible to install a garden gate on a slope or hill but usually this is not a simple job and it involves landscaping the ground so it is flat where the gate will open and close.
Garden Gate on a slope

If a run of fencing is installed on a hill, usually it is stepped down when the fence is installed from fence panels or a traditional style fence then usually the fence rails run with the hill.

When a garden gate is involved, if the opening side of the garden gate is on the increase of the hill/slope then the bottom of the gate will ground when the gates is closed.  If the opening side of the garden gate is on the decrease of the hill then a large gap will be present under the gate when closed.

The only respectable option is to landscape the ground so it is flat under the opening area of the garden gate and this will allow the gate to be Right Hand or Left Hand Hanging. 

It is possible to install the gate with the opening side running down the hill but an unsightly gap will be seen when the gate is closed and this defeats the object of a gate.

If you have no choice and the gate has to be installed on a hill and landscaping involved, one of the best ways to keep it simpler is to use a narrow gate.  This way less landscaping will have to be performed to make the area flat.

Thursday 5 September 2013

Concrete or Wooden Fence Posts?

If your are sitting on the Fence deciding whether to purchase Treated Wooden Fence Posts or Concrete Fence posts, this blog may help.

Both types of Fence Post have their advantages. These are highlighted below:

Concrete Posts

  • Concrete Posts will not rot unlike Wooden Posts that are not adequately treated.

Wooden Posts

Cracked Concrete Fence Post
Cracked Concrete Posts
  • A Wooden Post will not rot if the timber is Jackure treated and Installed with adequate drainage. How to install a timber Fence Post=by Jacksons.

  • Wooden Posts will match wooden fencing or fence panels and are more aesthetically pleasing than concrete posts.

  • Wooden Posts will not Chip or Crack like Concrete Posts.  If a small crack or chip appears on the concrete fence post, water can get into the post. If the water in the post freezes, this can cause the damage to worsen over time eventually exposing the metal reinforcing wires.  When water comes into contact with metal reinforcing wires, they then rust which is a recipe for disaster.

  • Wooden Posts are not as heavy as Concrete posts, so they are not as difficult to install. Typically a concrete post for a 1.8m high fence is twice the safe weight for one person to lift.
  • This weight difference can also save on transport costs especially if you are towing a trailer full of them back home from the local fencing shop.

  • Wooden Fence Posts allow the fence panel to be screwed to the fence posts. This in turn can stop the annoying noise that occurs when panels rattle in the wind.

    Screwing Fence Panels into the posts can also make the fence more secure. One of the most common ways items or pets are stolen from a fenced garden is the removal of a Fence Panel. This is a simple and reasonably quiet task if fence panels are slotted into slotted fence posts. Thieves will lift the panel out of the posts and then have full access to the targeted property. A simple a effective solution to this problem is a torx head screw through the posts and into the rails of a fence panel from inside of the property.   A potential thief is unlikely to climb the fence, use a torx head screw driver to remove Six screws (Three screws in each post per rail) from a standard panel and then lift the panel out of the posts.
Wooden fence Post Screws
A torx head screw through the post and into the rail on the Fence Panel
  • Wooden posts also allow the addition of Fence Post Caps. Fence posts caps and post toppings for example an acorn can add an elegant finishing touch to any fence. They are also another step for a thief to remove the post caps if they want to remove a fence panel out of a slotted post.

So in answer to the question, Concrete or Wooden Fence Posts...

Jakcure treated Wooden Fence Posts have many more advantages over Concrete Fence Posts and we wouldnt be suprised if a concrete fence post is soon a thing of the past.

Monday 22 April 2013

A Fence Exposed to Strong Winds

Sometimes fences have to be installed in areas subject to strong winds.  Whether a garden that backs onto an open field, the fence location is positioned near the coast or the fence needs to be placed at the top of a hill, all these locations will be have complete exposure to all natural elements.

Installing a fence in a location that's prone to windy conditions doesn't have one simple solution.  Many different options are available when installing the fence but they depend on the requirements.

Installing a fence in a windy location without the loss of privacy

There are a few options when installing a fence without the loss of privacy.  If a standard Featherboard or Closeboard Fence is installed with standard posts and a couple of bags of Postcrete,
Heavy Duty Slotted Post
Heavy Duty Slotted Posts
more than likely after the first gusts of strong wind the fence will of blown over.

The first option is to install a fence using over-length Slotted Heavy Duty Fence Posts and use extra Postcrete or a good mix or concrete.  Heavy duty slotted fence posts will ensure the panels are secure and with the use of screws holding the panels to the slotted posts, they will be firmly held in place.  If a combination of extra Postcrete or concrete mix and over-length are used, there is less chance of the post being blown out of the ground or becoming unstable.

Hit and Miss Fence Panels
Hit and Miss Fence Panels
If it's going to be incredibly windy, it may be best to go for the second option below.

The second option is using fence panels that allow wind to pass through, taking pressure off the fence but at the same time not losing the privacy the fence panels provide.  A good example of this are hit and miss fence panels.  These panels will allow gusts of wind to pass taking stress off the fence.  It is probably best to take into account the option above with over-length heavy duty posts , just to make sure.  View other semi-solid fence panels.

If privacy is not an issue

If privacy is not an issue and the fence is being used to mark a boundary then the problem is simple, use a fence that will not be effected by the wind.  A simple Picket Fence or Jaktop fence is the solution

Picket Fence
A Simple Palisade / Picket Fence

Wednesday 27 February 2013

Timber Wall Ideas

Timber Wall Screws
A timber garden wall is a cheaper, easier way of creating garden features, boundaries or landscaped areas without the use of a traditional brick wall and the need for foundations or footings.
Below are some simple and effective timber garden wall ideas.  These ideas use Jacksons unique Jakwall that comes in a 2.4 lengths and uses a hex head timber wall screw system to simply join the timbers together.    
Timber Retaining Wall – A great wall to divide different raised areas of a garden.   The timbers can be used to give a boring flat garden some raised areas or used to segment a slope.

Timber Wall
Raised Beds for Flowers or Veg – A simple and effective way of creating a raised bed.  The bed could be one timber high or even a few timbers high.
Pond Structures – A timber wall can be used to support the lining of a pond, giving extra height from floor level.
Sand pits – Add a timber wall around a sand pit to section the sand pit from grassy areas, hopefully retaining sand in one place.
Decking Fascia – A timber garden wall is an ideal wall of creating a fascia/base for wooden garden decking.  It will look good if using Jakwall brick effect solution and will also support the decking in that area.
Hopefully some of the ideas above will give some background of how a timber garden wall can be integrated into your garden design.