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Painting your estate fence

Due to the construction of estate fencing, painting is a relatively fast process. One person should be able to paint at around 50 meters in a day with little painting experience.

Do you actually need to paint your fence?

Before picking up the brushes though ask the question, do you need to paint your estate fencing ?

Weathered steel is more popular than ever and it doesn’t look to be a trend ending anytime soon.

The beauty of letting your fence rust naturally is the fact you now have a zero  maintenance construction. It will take up to a year for weathering process to complete and all parts of the fence to become an even brown.

rusted estate fence

The weathered steel blends very nicely into a natural setting and brings a sense of maturity into a scheme. Painting your estate fence won’t significantly increase its lifespan either, a weathered estate fence will last well in excess of 60 years.

Our advice on paints and painting

That said there are plenty of occasions when a painted finish is desirable. In modern developments, in more formal settings or simply a personal preference. Black is the traditional colour but be open to choosing a colour to fit within an existing scheme, bear in mind the nature of the fence, heritage colours and those with muted tones tend to be most fitting.

As with all diy ensure you have the appropriate personal protective equipment for the preparation and application of paints.

Before preparing the fence to paint ensure all growth has been cut back, cut the grass along the base and clear away any clippings around the posts, picking out grass clippings from paint is a little frustrating ! Use a wire brush ideally on a drill to clear any rust or scale from hard to reach places and sand paper is best along the rails and post runs. Clear off dust and ensure the steel is clean before painting.

Paint choice is a personal preference typically enamel based paints are used, these are more durable, provide good coverage and dry faster than most other options.

Some paints require a primer and more than one top coat. There are options for single coat paints which do not require any primers, this has obvious labour saving advantages however these tend to be quick thick paints so care is needed to achieve a smooth finish.

For high build single coat paints we use one from Regal paints which is available in a range of colours. This can be found at https://regalpaint.co.uk/metal-paint/one-coat-high-buildsteel-enamel-paint/

On a warm day this will become thick quickly so it’s worth purchasing a cellulose thinner too. We find once you have applied it try not to go over it again as this will leave brush marks.

We have had good results with a combination of a paint glove on the rails and brush on the posts which are a little more fiddly. The advantage of the glove is the ability to paint all sides of the rails in one go which makes short work of the rails.

Painting in our workshop is done using a paint sprayer, these can be used outside too but be careful as the drift will travel. Sprayers require some experience or practice to achieve an even coverage. Most paints require a little thinning prior to being applied through a sprayer. However they are very quick and should provide an excellent finish. If you have lots of fence to paint and there is no danger of the spray drift causing a problem, these are the way forward.

Even a budget sprayer such as this will do the job well. Take care to ensure all parts of the fence is covered. Applied properly you shouldn’t have to paint your estate fence again for at least a couple of years.

There will often be some small areas wear of painted surfaces and rust staining on gate latches and hinges, try not to let this bother you as it’s hard to avoid !

close up of painted estate fencing

As with any aspect of estate fencing, if you have any queries on painting, please get in touch and we will do our best to assist