With an increasing focus on sustainability and environmental friendliness worldwide, a homeowner might wonder what eco-friendly options are available when installing a new fence. Because vinyl fencing is made from a type of plastic, they might not consider it to be an eco-friendly building product. However, there is much to consider regarding the environmental benefits of vinyl fencing when it comes to longevity, preserving natural resources, maintenance, and recycling. GMX Fencing, experts in vinyl fencing in Freehold, NJ, can help you discover some of those benefits.
Vinyl Fencing Lasts Longer Than Other Fencing Materials
Vinyl fencing installation is durable and far less susceptible to damage and wear from the same elements that can eventually damage metal or wood fencing. Professional fencing installation can provide your home with a vinyl fence that can last for decades. The longer the fence lasts, the fewer resources will be needed to manufacture and install a new one. Vinyl fencing is made from a synthetic material designed to withstand the same environmental factors that can wear out wood and metal fences. Here are some of those environmental factors that can reduce the lifespan of wood and metal fences and how vinyl fencing can stand up to them:
- Sunlight and heat – Exposure to sunlight and heat over time can cause wooden fences to crack, split, or warp. It can also cause metal fences to expand and contract, leading to cracks and other damage. The PVC used in high-quality vinyl fences is formulated to be UV resistant, making it less prone to weathering and discoloration caused by exposure to sunlight and heat.
- Insects and pests – Insects such as termites or carpenter ants can burrow into wooden fences and weaken their structure. While it is possible for vinyl fences to be damaged by insects and pests, it’s highly uncommon. Vinyl fences are generally not susceptible to damage from insects and pests, as the synthetic material they are made from is not attractive to termites or carpenter ants.
- Rain and moisture – Water can eventually take a toll on even treated wooden fences, causing the wood to rot and decay. Moisture can eventually cause metal fences to rust and corrode, making them unsightly and likely to fail. However, vinyl fences do not rust and are non-porous, meaning they do not absorb moisture, making them less susceptible to rain and snow.
- Fungi and mold – Similar to rain and moisture, fungi and mold can cause wooden fences to rot and decay. Vinyl fences typically resist mold and fungus growth. If your vinyl fence becomes stained by fungus or mold, it can be cleaned using bleach or a vinyl fence cleaner. Having your fence installed with several inches of gravel between post holes can also provide better drainage and decrease the likelihood of fungus and mold staining your vinyl fencing.
- Salt water and salt spray – In coastal areas, salt water and salt spray have been known to accelerate corrosion and cause metal fences to deteriorate more quickly. Vinyl fences are resistant to damage by salt water and salt spray. However, periodically cleaning the fence and removing any salt buildup is a good idea to prevent potential discoloration.
Vinyl Fencing Helps Preserve Natural Resources
One of the main environmental benefits of vinyl fencing is that using it helps preserve natural resources. Using vinyl fencing products means fewer trees must be cut to manufacture wooden fences. Generally, it can take as many as 3 to 5 trees to make enough wood for a standard wooden fence 6 feet tall and 100 feet long. Even more trees would be needed for a fence installed along longer property lines. If you’re concerned about saving trees, a professional vinyl fence installation can be a better option for you.
No Chemicals Needed to Maintain Vinyl Fencing
Unlike wood fencing, vinyl fencing requires no toxic chemicals for maintenance. Wood fencing requires UV inhibitors, water-repellent coatings, and repainting or restaining every three years to protect it from water and sunlight. Without such care, it can quickly become an eyesore. Cleaning a wooden fence can cause these chemicals to wash off and get absorbed into the ground. Most metal fences must also be repainted or recoated every 5 to 10 years to help prevent rust and corrosion. Disposing of unused chemicals required to maintain a wooden or metal fence can also harm the environment. Many require special disposal as municipal trash services will not collect them.
Easy maintenance is another one of the environmental benefits of vinyl fencing. Maintaining your fencing doesn’t require painting or staining. You also don’t need harsh or potentially toxic chemicals to clean vinyl fence panels or fence posts — they can often be cleaned with a garden hose. Environmentally friendly cleaners can also be used to wipe off most stains. In fact, using harsh chemicals is not recommended for cleaning vinyl fencing in most manufacturers’ instructions, as harsh and abrasive cleaners can damage the material. Instead, mild soap and a soft-bristled brush will do the trick when water isn’t enough to clean your fence.
Vinyl Fencing Can be Recycled
Another one of the environmental benefits of vinyl fencing is that vinyl PVC products are made of a type of plastic that can often be recycled. In many cases, recycled vinyl fencing can be melted down and used to create new vinyl fencing. Consult with your local recycling facility to find out if they accept vinyl fencing and if there are any restrictions on the type of vinyl they will accept. You can also contact the vinyl fence manufacturer to see if they offer a recycling program. Recycling your vinyl reduces environmental waste by preventing discarded vinyl fence panels, fence posts, and corner posts from winding up in landfills.
Find Your Next Fence With GMX Fencing
If you’re in the market for a new fence, consider the environmental benefits of vinyl fencing installation by GMX Fencing. GMX Fencing offers all types of fencing installation in Manchester, NJ, and the surrounding areas. Our vinyl fence installation can provide you with a durable fence that preserves natural resources and is easy to maintain. We can install a vinyl fence that will be a high-quality, stunning compliment to your home that will last for years.
Contact us today to discuss your fencing project and get a free quote on vinyl fence installation.