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Vinyl Fencing Is A Viable Alternative To Wood

Aug 17, 2007
There's nothing worse than having to go out and paint a fence every few years. Up and down. Up and down. It feels like your arms will fall off! For those who hate dealing with the regular, routine maintenance associated with wood fencing, vinyl fencing is a solid alternative. It has some great advantages over wood with very few downfalls.

Vinyl fencing is a fairly new creation that was born out of all things - the PVC pipe industry. That's right. PVC pipe is some incredible stuff. It's not just for plumbing any more. Everything from furniture and robots to fences are made from this stuff, and there's a good reason for it: It's easy to work with, it holds its appearance and it's simple to maintain.

Vinyl fencing has come a long way since it was first introduced. Earlier models of the fencing, made from PVC, were prone to break down after exposure in the sun. Now, specialized coating is used to protect the material's form, shape and appearance. In fact, the vinyl fencing made today stands up better-than-well in the elements, but it did take some time for manufacturers to figure out a process to make that so.

Vinyl is a bit different than wood when it comes to fencing. It has its advantages and disadvantages. They include:
Pros:

* Vinyl is strong. It's harder than break or tear than wood and it's flexible, too. Considering its plastic qualities, it's also very good at holding its shape.

* Easy maintenance. Vinyl only needs to be washed to maintain its appearance. There's no need to paint it - ever!

* The color is the same throughout. Wood fencing can have one color on the surface and another inside. This will make scratches, dings, dents and especially breaks stand out more. This isn't the case with vinyl. Vinyl hides imperfections well.

Cons:

* Movement. Vinyl expands when it's heated. This means it can move. If it gets extremely hot, it can take on the properties no one wants to see in their fencing. The good news, however, is that this only occurs in extreme temperatures nearing the 200 degrees F range!

* Colors are limited. Because of the heating issues, vinyl fencing can only be found in light colors. It can, of course, be made to resemble wood, which is not a bad thing, but you won't find it in darker, wood colors. And if you do, stay away!

Vinyl fencing is a great way to go for homeowners or businesses that don't want to spend a lot of time on maintenance. More expensive than wood or chain link, the costs can be justified by the fact this fencing doesn't need to be painted or treated and it tends to stand up to the test of time better. It's stronger and more durable and simply only requires a good cleaning to look brand new again. For many the investment is well worth the time savings vinyl presents.
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