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I bought a few fence panels from a buddy of mine, i need to see wat is the best posts? i could use with them either wood posts, or metal posts... how far do I have to dig each one? and should i use brackets? for each panel? PLEASE HELP THANX

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Posted 2012-04-05T23:28:11+0000  by roachie roachie

Hello roachie.  Welcome to the Community!


I will assume that your fence panels are wood.  For those you will want post made of wood as well.  Choices include pressure treated, redwood and cedar.  Pressure treated posts are cheaper and last longer.  You will not need any brackets, as the panels will be nailed or screwed directly to the posts.  The posts are set in the ground spaced so that each panel will extend half way across the width of the post.


I spend time each year replacing those few fence posts in my yard that have rotted enough to become wobbly.  Usually this is all that's needed, but it is a bit of work since my cedar posts are set in concrete.  Your situation is somewhat different though...


How far do you have to dig?

Well, the rule of thumb is that 1/3 of a fence post should be buried at minimum, and digging a hole 1/2 the fence height is common.  You also need to consider the winter frost line.  Here in Chicagoland fence post holes are typically at least 2 1/2' deep, even for shorter fences.  You can dig these post holes by hand, (the really hard way), or use a power auger, (the less hard way).



Manual Hole Digger.jpg


Power Auger.jpg

You can rent these power augers at your local Home Depot Tool Rental center.



Home Depot has a Project Guide on setting posts which looks like this:


Project Guide 1-3.PNG

Project Guide 4.PNG


In areas with heavy clay soil, some folks just refill the post hole with soil rather than concrete.  Others will "dry pour" concrete to fill the hole and just add water.  I mix the concrete to the correct consistency in a wheelbarrow and shovel the mix into the hole as shown above.  This provides the strongest solution, and allows you to form the top of the concrete into a dome which sheds water.  Once the posts are in, it's time to set the panels.  Using hot-dip, galvanized or stainless steel nails and exterior screws will help maximize the life span of your fence.


I hope that is useful and wish you the best in finishing your project. Please let us know if you have any further questions about this or any other projects you may be working on. We are here to help.







Posted 2012-04-06T14:16:43+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI

If you have posts rotting at the concrete line and have to dig all that out, couldn't you just use a Simpson EZ-Base post base fastened in the concrete? Seems it would make replacing a post a whole lot easier. Pour your concrete once and only replace the posts as needed.


Posted 2012-04-10T22:19:26+0000  by Paul

Hey Paul.


While your suggestion works well for decking structures, I don't think a post base on concrete could handle the wind force a fence applies to the post base.  The connection between the fence post and its base would have its holding power concentrated at a very small area.  That's the primary reason why fence posts have to be buried so deeply.  I sure wish that something like that could work for my fencing though. 








Posted 2012-04-13T12:56:26+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI

Unlike the Simpson StrongTie post base anchors for decking (such as ABA44 which does not handle rotational load), the EZ-Base from Simpson is designed for fences.


Check this out:



Posted 2012-04-13T19:01:39+0000  by Paul



I think these might work OK for a relatively open fence.  For a privacy fence that acts to block the wind I would be very hesitant to go this route.


E-Z Base.PNG


These anchors are expected to perform at the point of maximum bending stress.  I can see why the *NOTE is somewhat cautious.


Posted 2012-04-13T19:52:00+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI

I think you guys are looking for this product.


It is called Ez-Mender and it can be driven in between new replacement post and old concrete. I also don’t think EZ base it is a good idea, especially with privacy wood fencing.


ezmender-3dillo (1).jpgezmender-3dillo (1).jpgezmender-after.jpg


Hope this helps,




Posted 2012-04-24T20:40:35+0000  by George_HD_CHI

Everything sound and looks good, but I need to know about metal posts

Posted 2012-07-17T21:31:55+0000  by tazamaniadevil

Hello tazamaniadevil.  Welcome to the Community!


Metal fence posts that are corroded at the bottom can be handled in a couple of ways. 


For wrought iron fencing, it is often easiest to cut off the post flush with the concrete, and then further cut away the post from its panels to a height of a foot or two.  A special floor flange would be set in the concrete and then a new post section would be welded in place to both the flange and all other points of contact.  Once the welding is done, grinding and then painting will finish the job.


For chain link fencing, the old post is replaced just like a wood one.  The old post is pulled, cut off or otherwise removed.  The concrete footing is then either broken up and removed or pulled up mechanically.  A new post is put in place and concrete is poured.  Once the concrete is set, the fencing is then re-attached to the new post.


Home Depot has a Project Guide on chain link fences that you can find here.


Chain Link Fence Project Guide.PNG



I hope this helps,




Posted 2012-07-20T14:07:47+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI
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