What Are Fence Base Boards? | an Overview and Uses

Fence base boards, also known as gravel boards, play a crucial role in enhancing the durability and longevity of fences. These boards, typically constructed from wood or concrete, are designed to fit snugly beneath fence panels, serving as a protective barrier against various threats. With a height of around 140mm, the primary purpose of these boards is to prevent moisture from seeping into the bottom of the fence, thereby reducing the risk of rot and decay. Additionally, fence base boards act as a barrier against insect attacks and debris, further safeguarding the integrity of the entire fence structure. By providing a solid foundation and additional protection, these boards contribute significantly to the overall strength and longevity of fences, making them an essential component for any fencing project.

What Is the Bottom Board of a Fence Called?

What Are Fence Base Boards? | An Overview and Uses

When it comes to erecting a fence, there are various components that come together to create a sturdy and functional structure. One such essential element is the base board, also known as a kickboard.

Base boards are crafted from pressure-treated wood, making them highly resistant against rot and pests. This preventive measure ensures the longevity of not only the base boards but also the entire fence. These boards are strategically placed at the bottom of the fence, making direct contact with the ground. This positioning helps prevent moisture from seeping into the fence, which can lead to decay and damage over time.

Kickboards play an integral role in maintaining the overall stability of the fence. By acting as a barrier between the fence and the ground, they provide additional support and protection. They help prevent soil erosion, keeping the foundation intact and reducing the risk of the fence slanting or leaning. Moreover, kickboards act as an effective deterrent for small animals, preventing them from burrowing underneath the fence and causing damage.

In terms of utility, base boards offer a practical solution for both privacy and aesthetics. They create a seamless look by concealing the gaps between the ground and the lower portion of the fence. This not only enhances the overall appearance but also provides an extra layer of privacy and security.

In addition to their functional benefits, base boards offer versatility in terms of design. They can be customized to match the style and color scheme of the fence, allowing homeowners to create a cohesive and visually appealing outdoor space. Whether you opt for a traditional wooden fence or a modern vinyl one, incorporating kickboards can add a sophisticated and polished touch.

Alternative Options to Base Boards for Fences

  • Composite boards
  • Metal panels
  • Vinyl sheets
  • Bamboo screens
  • Wire mesh
  • Stone slabs
  • Glass panels
  • PVC boards
  • Reclaimed wood

When building a wooden fence, it’s important to leave a gap between fence boards to account for the natural expansion of wood. This is particularly necessary when the wood becomes moist. Without adequate spacing, the fence boards are prone to warping, which can lead to damage and an overall distorted appearance for the fence.

Why Do You Leave a Gap Between Fence Boards?

When constructing a wooden fence, it’s important to consider the natural expansion and contraction of wood due to moisture. Without leaving a sufficient gap between fence boards, the wood will eventually succumb to warping, leading to potential damage and an aesthetically displeasing appearance. This gap allows for the wood to naturally expand and contract, accommodating any changes in humidity or moisture levels.

Leaving space between fence boards allows for better air circulation, which plays a vital role in maintaining the health and longevity of the wood. Proper air circulation helps prevent moisture buildup, which can lead to mold, rot, and decay. By creating adequate gaps, the fence boards can dry more evenly, reducing the risk of water retention and subsequent damage.

Furthermore, a gap between fence boards offers an additional benefit in terms of maintenance and repairs. It allows for easier access to individual boards should they require replacement or maintenance. Without a gap, removing and replacing a damaged board would become significantly more challenging, potentially resulting in additional damage or the need to dismantle large sections of the fence.

Considerations should also be given to the type of material used for the fence boards. Different woods have varying degrees of expansion capabilities and moisture sensitivity.

It allows the wood to naturally respond to environmental changes, promotes air circulation, and facilitates ease of maintenance and repairs.

When it comes to protecting your wooden fence from contact with the soil, there are several options to consider. Implementing gravel boards, utilizing concrete posts, or setting wooden posts in concrete are all viable choices. These solutions help to ensure the longevity and stability of your fence by minimizing ground contact and preventing soil moisture damage.

What Do You Put at the Base of a Fence?

When it comes to protecting the base of your fence, there are a few options to consider. One widely popular choice is to install gravel boards along the bottom. Gravel boards act as a barrier between the wooden fence and the soil, helping to prevent rot and decay. These boards are typically made from high-quality pressure-treated timber, ensuring durability and longevity. Additionally, gravel boards can also enhance the overall appearance of your fence, providing a clean and finished look.

Another option is to set your wooden posts in concrete. This method involves digging holes for the posts, placing them securely in the ground, and then pouring concrete around them to secure them in place. Concrete provides excellent stability and helps protect the posts from moisture and rot. It’s essential to ensure that the concrete is properly mixed and poured to ensure a strong foundation for your fence.

Source: How to Protect a Fence From Soil Damage

Additionally, using wooden pockets to fill in the gaps between the bottom of the fence and the ground offers a more seamless and natural appearance. By cutting and placing the wooden boards uniformly, you can create a cohesive look that seamlessly integrates with your wooden fence.

What Do You Put Between Bottom of Fence and Ground?

The wooden pockets act as base boards that provide a seamless transition between the fence and the ground. These boards are typically made from treated wood that’s resistant to rot and decay, ensuring their durability and longevity. They’re also designed to withstand the natural movements of the fence, preventing any gaps or spaces from forming.

Additionally, wooden base boards offer a practical solution for uneven terrain or sloping ground. By installing these boards, you can provide a level surface for your fence, ensuring it’s stability and preventing any tilting or leaning. This is especially beneficial in areas with heavy rainfall or snow, where the ground can become unstable and affect the structural integrity of the fence.

Moreover, these base boards can serve as a landscaping feature, providing a cohesive look to your outdoor space. You can paint or stain them to match the color of your fence, creating a unified and polished appearance. Furthermore, they can be adorned with decorative elements such as carvings or patterns, adding a touch of elegance to your fence and elevating the overall aesthetic of your property.

Alternative Options for Base Boards: In Addition to Wooden Base Boards, There Are Other Materials That Can Be Used to Provide a Transition Between the Fence and the Ground, Such as Concrete, Metal, or Composite Materials. These Alternatives May Offer Different Benefits in Terms of Durability, Aesthetics, or Cost.

Alternative options for base boards include materials such as concrete, metal, or composite materials. These alternatives can be used to provide a transition between the fence and the ground, offering different benefits in terms of durability, aesthetics, and cost.

Beyond simply attaching fence boards, it’s essential to consider a secure and long-lasting connection. When it comes to this, galvanized screws are an ideal choice. The galvanized coating on these screws makes them suitable for use with both pressure-treated and untreated wood. This ensures that your fence boards are securely attached, providing durability and longevity for your fence project.

What Do You Use to Attach Fence Boards?

When it comes to attaching fence boards, one commonly used option is galvanized screws. These screws are specifically designed to provide a secure and long-lasting connection for your fence boards. The galvanized coating on these screws makes them suitable for both pressure-treated and untreated wood, offering great versatility in their usage.

This is crucial for maintaining the integrity and stability of your fence.

These screws can be easily drilled into the wood, providing a quick and efficient way to assemble your fence. Their sharp point and thread design allow for smooth and effortless penetration, resulting in a secure connection.

Available in various lengths and styles, you can choose screws that match the design and color scheme of your fence. This won’t only provide a neat and clean finish, but also enhance the overall visual appeal of your outdoor space.

Best Practices for Attaching Fence Boards: Provide a Step-by-Step Guide or Tips on the Proper Technique for Attaching Fence Boards to Ensure a Strong and Secure Fence. Include Information on Spacing, Leveling, and Alignment to Achieve a Professional-Looking Finish.

  • Measure and mark the desired spacing for your fence boards
  • Start at one end and attach the first board using galvanized nails or screws
  • Ensure the board is level by using a level tool
  • Continue attaching the remaining boards, making sure to maintain the desired spacing
  • Periodically check for level and adjust as necessary
  • Use a string line or straight edge to ensure alignment for a professional look
  • Secure each board with nails or screws, ensuring they’re driven in firmly
  • Repeat the process for each section of the fence
  • Inspect the finished fence for any loose boards and make necessary adjustments
  • Apply a protective finish to prolong the life of the fence

Small gaps are expected in wooden fences due to the natural expansion and contraction of the wood over time. However, when significant gaps occur, it’s usually a result of wear and tear caused by weather damage, shifts in terrain, and interactions with wildlife. These factors can contribute to the overall charm and character of wooden fences, as they age gracefully and embrace the surrounding environment.

Why Do Wooden Fences Have Gaps?

Wooden fences have always been a popular choice for homeowners due to their natural and rustic appeal. However, one common feature of wooden fences that often raises questions is the presence of gaps. These gaps may vary in size, from small and barely noticeable to larger and more significant. They can be attributed to several factors, including the expansion and contraction of wooden materials over time.

Wood is a natural material that reacts to changes in it’s environment, including fluctuations in temperature and humidity. As a result, wooden fence boards may expand when exposed to high levels of humidity or moisture, causing them to push against each other and create gaps. Similarly, during dry and hot conditions, the boards may contract, leaving small gaps between them. These natural changes can happen gradually over time, and while they may not be visually appealing to some, they’re considered an inherent characteristic of wooden fences.

Over time, exposure to elements such as rain, wind, and sunlight can cause the wood to deteriorate, leading to the formation of cracks and gaps.

Animals such as squirrels, raccoons, and even termites can gnaw or burrow into the wood, weakening it’s structure and creating gaps. These gaps may be larger and more noticeable, and they can compromise the functionality and aesthetic appeal of the fence.

While small gaps are expected and can be considered a natural occurrence, significant gaps due to wear and tear, terrain shifts, and wildlife damage should be addressed. Regular maintenance, such as staining or sealing the fence, can help minimize the effects of weather damage and slow down the expansion and contraction of wood. Additionally, addressing any underlying issues, such as soil erosion or wildlife infestations, can prevent further damage and maintain the integrity of the fence. Consulting with professionals or experienced fence contractors can provide guidance and solutions for minimizing and repairing gaps in wooden fences, ensuring their longevity and functionality.

Common Types of Wooden Fences and Their Specific Characteristics.

Wooden fences come in various types and each has it’s unique characteristics. Some common types include picket fences, privacy fences, and post-and-rail fences.

Picket fences are often used for decorative purposes and typically consist of evenly spaced vertical boards or pickets. They offer a charming and traditional look.

Privacy fences, on the other hand, are designed to provide maximum privacy by blocking the view from outside. They usually have overlapping boards or panels and are taller than picket fences.

Post-and-rail fences are known for their simplicity and are often used for agricultural purposes. They consist of horizontal rails held in place by vertical posts and are effective in containing livestock.

Each type of wooden fence has it’s own advantages and is suitable for different needs and preferences. They can enhance the aesthetics of outdoor spaces while also serving practical purposes like privacy or containment.


By creating a barrier, they enhance the fence's durability and resistance to potential damage, ultimately ensuring it’s longevity.

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