In a word: Familiarity. We've all grown up in a world of wood decks, fences, picnic tables, and furniture, and there's a comfort level in sticking with what we know.
2. What makes Fence-All Wood different?
As a manufacturer, a leading Canadian supplier, and an installer Fence-All offers the largest selection of outdoor wood products and systems available anywhere, matching different lumbers to different budgets.
We design every wood fence, gate, railing or deck we sell so that they will present perfectly balanced at the right sizes and proportions for their surroundings.
We also have a wide variety of choices for gate hardware and fence/deck/railing accessories.
3. What type of wood is best?
Western Red Cedar has always been the Fence-All Wood of Choice. While there are other more costly alternatives available, Cedar continues to offer the greatest value for meeting customer expectations.
4. Do you offer alternatives?
YES. We offer all of our wood products in a choice of wood types and grades. See the information page of any of our products or ask one of our Sales Representatives to discuss options.
5. Can you tell me more about Red Cedar versus White Cedar?
Red Cedar is from the Rocky Mountains; White Cedar is from the Northeast (Ontario & Quebec); and so, mostly due to shipping costs, white cedar is a lower priced alternative for customers "in the east".
Eastern White Cedar is a relative of Western Red however, because the average white cedar tree is so much smaller, the lumber is quite a bit more knotty and is weaker than red by a considerable amount. The grain is straight; shrinkage is low; and decay resistance is very high for either.
6. Is Pressure Treated a more expensive, maintenance-free lumber?
NO. Pressure Treated Lumber is a cost saving alternative, spraying wood that would not typically be used outdoors with chemicals that deter insects, rot or fungi.
This chemical treatment is not meant to hold colour (it's not a stain) and, while customers should expect to save money, they should also expect to see greatly increased levels of splitting, cracking, twisting and/or cupping.
7. Do you recommend staining?
YES. Although Western Red Cedar will weather over time to a silver gray color that might be appealing for some, we believe that applying some kind of protective finish provides the best long-term results both from an aesthetic and performance point of view.
For Pressure Treated Lumber effective water repellants will retard the impact of moisture in the wood and, thereby, help reduce splitting, cracking and twisting that is common with these types of wood.
Fence-All does offer pre-staining options for most of our wood products, ask a Sales Representative for details.
8. Is staining the only maintenance required?
NO. Pollen and pollution are the most common causes of discoloration, even if the wood has been properly stained, and should be removed//cleaned every spring and fall.
9. How long should I expect Fence or Deck to last?
Properly finished, any of our wood products can look great and preform well for more than 20 years, but height off the ground, distance between posts, wind load & snow load are all factors that challenge the total years of service.
10. How long should I expect until I have to stain again?
If done right, and under typical conditions, Fences and Railings will typically need a re-coat every five years. Decks however need to be stained every year due to the wear and tear of foot traffic and the damage caused by laying out in direct contact with the sun.
11. What about environmental concerns?
Wood is the only renewable building material on earth, it's a completely natural building material that's 100% biodegradable, and harvesting wood has been shown to be much less intrusive than the mining of raw materials for steel and concrete such as iron ore, coal and limestone.
12. Can you tell me more about the new type of Pressure Treating?
Alkaline Copper Quaternary Ammonium (ACQ) is a wood preservative - containing copper and quaternary ammonium compound (quat) as active ingredients - that protects against rot, decay and termite attack. It is the most common replacement to the old CCA method. Quat is a product commonly used in commercial disinfectants and cleaners. It acts as a co-biocide. Some copper does leach from ACQ-treated lumber, making it unsafe for garden or marine use.
13. What about using non-treated lumbers, other than Cedar?
We believe Cedar gives the optimal combination of price and value. We are always happy to explore//experiment with more expensive alternatives, for customers who really have their heart set on a particular dream look, but we do not offer lower costing wood types that are not really meant to be used outdoors.
14. Does it matter if a wood fence touches the ground?
Wood fences are best installed at least 2" above ground level. Wood that is touching the ground will rot at an accelerated rate and may cause the entire fence to heave with frost.
15. Do wood fence posts have to be set in concrete?
Although there are times when an alternative might work better, the most cost effective and sturdiest method of installing wood fences is to set them in concrete.
16. Can I let vines grow on my new wood fence?
Sure, but never use Pressure Treated Lumber around edible products.
17. Do post caps help to deter rot in wood fence posts?
The choice of cap and the height to cut off posts is purely an aesthetic choice. Posts will rot at ground level much faster than way up at the top.
18. Why do knots sometimes fall out of the fence boards?
Knots and the surrounding wood have different densities. Since knots are more dense, they expand and contract less than the surrounding wood, loosening the bond. For customers concerned about this, we recommend our #1 Western Red Cedar, or Select Grade Cedar. The knots will be smaller and tighter. The cost is slightly more, but your fence will have a longer serviceable life.
19. What causes black marks around the nails in a wood fence?
Black stains are caused by natural wood extracts interacting with the metal. Moist wood increases the likelihood of this interaction. To help avoid this Fence-All uses only hot-dipped galvanized spiral nails and fasteners.
For ACQ Pressure Treated Lumber, which leaches copper, special double galvanized fasteners are required.
20. What do you recommend for helping the wood posts last longer?
Many homeowners try to plan ahead and ask if we have a solution for posts that will last longer. Stone dust, Steel Posts, Sono Tubes, & doming the concrete pier are all options that have been greatly explored but all have shown inherent problems. There are more modern alternatives available. Ask a Fence-All Representative for more details (our PVC posts come with a lifetime warrantee against rot, and will fit almost any wood fence style).
21. Why does wood rot?
Cellulose and lignin, the main components of wood, ensure the rigidity of the cells which make up the trunk of a tree. Certain types of fungi are very fond of cellulose and lignin. With the help of enzymes, these fungi dissolve the cellular walls of the wood and consume the dissolved materials as food. Thus the wood weakens and rots.
Some species of wood are more resistant to decay than others. Cedar, for instance, gives fungi a tough time. A cedar fence post can last over 25 years without any special treatment while a maple or spruce post will last only 5 years without preservatives. Cedar's ability to resist decay is a result of the resin and chemicals it produces naturally: they keep insects away and inhibit fungi growth.
It takes favourable conditions for fungi to grow: water and air are needed and the temperature must be neither too cold nor too hot. Dry wood will keep well for many years, as will the furniture and staircase inside your home. Wood submerged under water won't rot either because the decaying process needs air. Wood exposed to both air and humidity, like a picnic table or a fence post, is much more vulnerable. A fence post will rot faster at ground level than underground because air is present to speed up the decaying process.
22. Is Wood available in different colours?
YES. Almost all of our Wood products are available pre-stained in a choice of colours. See the individual style pages for the standard colour choices.
23. Will you come to re-stain later or will you stain on-site after construction?
NO. Our pre-staining is done inside our shop, and does not travel.
24. Why is pre-staining better than staining after construction?
With pre-staining every piece of lumber has been treated on all sides/faces, in a controlled (low dust) setting. On site adds wind, dust, and points of no access - that never get treated.
25. What can you do about big changes of grade?
Extra posts at the top and bottom of any hills and/or custom cutting the boards are the most common ways to handle slopes and other changes in the grade of the land.
26. Do you offer larger diameter posts and/or options to make the fence stronger?
YES. We offer options for both our Industrial and Residential Fence Systems to make them stronger than typical for particular applications (e.g. snow load or high winds). These include such things as larger posts, tighter post spacing, and extra rails.
27. Do you sell individual parts and pieces?
YES. We offer pricing for any individual part or piece incorporated into any one of our standard fence, deck, railing or gate designs.
28. Do you sell to homeowners?
YES. Give us a call (613 736-1122) or come on down.