Privacy Fencing - Vinyl Fence?

Nifty

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We need a 6' tall privacy fence that is about 12 - 16 feet long.

I was going to just build a wood one, but my GF likes the idea of a vinyl fence.

I found these "cheap" ones:
Home Depot:

Lowes:

Or we can go really fancy with a composite:

... but she's leaning towards vinyl.

Anybody have experience with vinyl privacy fences?
 

Britesea

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the vinyl one costs a LOT less... that would mean a lot to me when we're talking about 12-16 feet.
 

flowerbug

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how long does it need to last?

i also am rather leery of anything plastic as eventually it seems the sun degrades it and it gets brittle or starts to crack or bend. the neighbors had some siding on their house that was so thin that it was damaged by hail. yes, it was a cheap manufactured house to begin with, but still you'd think at least it would have been required to be a certain rating for such things like hail.

my other issue with white is that eventually it may get some mildew on it which needs to be cleaned. a bit of bleach can sometimes do that without needing any kind of scrubbing or there are other cleaners which work too.

other than these thoughts, i have no other experience with privacy fencing other than wood.
 

FarmerJamie

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Like everything "it depends".

My personal experience with the former neighbor's fence. It was in a rather open area. Warped in extremely high heat one week and did not handle high winds from a thunderstorm
 

Nifty

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Great info / thoughts, thanks!

I drove by a house that I just noticed has a nice looking vinyl fence, so I'm going to see if my GF likes the way it looks, and if she does, I may knock on the peep's door and ask which one it is, how they like it.
 

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I have experience with the white vinyl fencing... but not in the way you would expect. Last fall, we found a whole pallet of vinyl fencing. Components to make about (11) 6'H x 8'L panels. I bought the whole thing for $99!!!!! I've used some of it to make raised beds. I used Shou Sugi Ban treated cedar 2 x 4's to make corner posts, as well as placing them every 3 - 4' along the length to keep the plastic from bowing out. For a fence that has no structural stresses, I expect the vinyl would last a good long time. The installation will only be as good as the support that you give it.
 

Nifty

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Wow, what a find @Lazy Gardener !! That sounds like a gold-mine!

Do you know which brand of fencing it was? We're worried because some of the fences we've seen look really thin, brittle, or otherwise like they aren't very durable.
 

Nifty

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That's great, thanks!
 

Nifty

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how long does it need to last?

i also am rather leery of anything plastic as eventually it seems the sun degrades it and it gets brittle or starts to crack or bend. the neighbors had some siding on their house that was so thin that it was damaged by hail. yes, it was a cheap manufactured house to begin with, but still you'd think at least it would have been required to be a certain rating for such things like hail.

my other issue with white is that eventually it may get some mildew on it which needs to be cleaned. a bit of bleach can sometimes do that without needing any kind of scrubbing or there are other cleaners which work too.

other than these thoughts, i have no other experience with privacy fencing other than wood.
Great stuff! You make a lot of points I've been wondering about!

I don't need it to last forever, but I'd like it to last a while... at least as long as a moderately similar wood fence.

I've definitely seen the old ones that are thin and brittle... that said, I've also seen old wood fences in terrible shape, so I'm wondering if there's an apples to apples comparison on what each one looks like after 5, 10, 20 years.

I've also seen the vinyl fence with mildew / algae / fungus (or whatever green stuff) growing on them... and it stands out like a sore thumb on white plastic... but, I've also seen a lot of wood fences with similar junk on them, dry rot, bug holes, etc.

My GF is hoping it will be easier to maintain (no staining / painting) and clean (using power washer) than wood, but I'm also worried about longevity, brittleness, etc. My hope would be that they've improved the UV protection, etc. with the newer formulations of plastic?
 

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