Privacy Fence FAQs

Carnahan-White Fence Company specializes in privacy fences for homes and businesses in Southwest Missouri. Our team can install a privacy fence for your property that looks great and upgrades your place.   

In today’s blog, we answer frequently asked questions about privacy fences.

What is a privacy fence?

A privacy fence for your property makes it very hard for someone to see in your yard without peering over it. These structures are designed to conceal your yard from next-door neighbors and people who drive or walk past your yard, so you can enjoy your property without nosy people looking at your family having fun.

What privacy fence designs are there?

These structures come in several popular designs, including:

Shadowbox, where vertical planks alternate on one side of horizontal boards, creating the same look on both sides of the fence. 

Lock-board, a type with planks fitting tightly together in a tongue-and-groove configuration to form a solid panel that completely blocks the view in both directions.

Convex, where the tops of the planks create a wave pattern along the course of the entire fence.

Dog-eared, a style that showcases a rounded top on each plank for a smooth appearance.

Stockade fences are built with security in mind because the top of each plank has a sharp and pointed top to prevent people from climbing over.

Man building and installing a privacy fence

How much does it cost to put in a privacy fence?

Expect to pay around $4,000 for an average price for labor and materials. But costs vary depending on the size of the project. Smaller projects cost less, and larger projects cost more.

What materials can a privacy fence be made out of?

Wood is the most common material for this type of project, while you might also see fences made of vinyl or aluminum.


What types of wood go into a privacy fence? 

You have some great choices of wood for your fence installation:

Pine is a common option, and companies typically add an insecticidal preservative through pressure treating to help the wood last longer while preventing invasions from insects like termites.

Fir is similar to pine, and you might find pine treated with a water-repellent stain.

Spruce comes from companies that create prefabricated fences.

Cypress contains an aromatic substance called cypretine, which deters insects naturally, and cypress also resists rot. Cypress planks often come from the southern United States, so it’s a great choice in the Gulf region.

Cedar is similar to cypress in that it contains natural oils that deter insects and rot. Cedar planks are cheaper than cypress.

Redwood represents the most expensive wood for privacy fences. But as a luxury option, you can’t beat redwood for its beautiful appearance, high durability, and excellent resistance to insects and rot.

Carnahan White Privacy Fence Styles Cedar Shadowbox

How long does a privacy fence last?

It can last about 20 years, with redwood, cedar, and pressure-treated pine wood lasting the longest due to their natural resistance to rot and insects.

How do you clean a privacy fence?

The best way to clean your fence is with a power washer with a psi of no more than 1500.

Follow these steps:

  1. Remove caked-on gunk with a wire brush, such as a hand-held scrub brush or a long-handled floor scrubber. Sometimes, caked-on mud won’t come off with a pressure washer, or you need to turn up the pressure washer so much that it damages the wood.
  2. Rinse the wood with water with a regular hose to get rid of any surface dirt.
  3. Put a tip on the pressure washer that fans out the water, such as a 25-degree tip. 
  4. Use long, even strokes with the pressure washer, standing a few feet away from the fence. Spray from top to bottom. Go over each plank until you don’t see dirty water running down the plank. Move on to the next one, adjusting the water pressure as you continue to clean.
  5. Consider a wood cleaner if you see problems with mold or mildew. Follow the instructions on the bottle of the cleanser for best results, including how long to leave the cleanser on before rinsing it off.

Pro tip: Do this in cooler weather when the sunlight isn’t directly shining on the wood to reduce any possible damage from the sun. 

Powerwashing an old wooden privacy fence

What is the process for installing a privacy fence?

The first step is to come out to the property to take measurements as to the size of the fence. Typically, installers set posts 6 or 8 feet apart.

Second, it’s time to dig the post holes. Then you put in the posts and make sure they are plumb and level in the ground before pouring concrete in them. It’s essential to let the concrete cure at least 24 hours before proceeding to the next step.

Third, we install horizontal boards that allow us to nail vertical planks to them. We make sure these are level.

Fourth, it’s time to nail vertical planks to the horizontal ones with a nail or two. This process takes the most time unless we install a prefabricated fence.

After this, you get to enjoy a privacy fence for decades to come!


Stained Privacy Fence

What stain colors work best for privacy fences?

Stain colors run the gamut from light brown to almost black, so what color you want depends on your style preference.

Popular choices include:

Brown because of its earth tones that match a lot of surroundings. Think warm cedar, rich redwood, or dark brown hues.

Gray to match the look of any stone on your property.

Reddish-brown to stand out, but also to match a traditional red farmhouse.

A subtle green color that goes with the grass of your yard.

Staggered colors, such as alternating brown with gray, for a look that matches multiple hues on your property.

In general, you should pick a stain color that complements your yard and property features rather than clashing with it.

Does a fence increase property value?

A privacy fence does not necessarily add to a home’s value unless there is an actual need for it, such as to keep animals off the property or denote a hard border between two properties close together.

How tall can a privacy fence be?

Companies usually install fences that are between 6 to 8 feet tall. If you want a taller fence, consult with local building codes.

Privacy fence installation in Springfield, MO

Reach out to the pros at Carnahan-White Fence Company! Give us a call at 417-883-0733, and we’ll talk about installing a beautiful privacy fence for your property.