How to Treat a Cedar Fence

A cedar fence provides a beautiful border to any lawn or home. Cedar is an ideal fence material because it is a fine grained, long-lasting wood that stands up to moisture and insects. Cedar does not rot easily, and is often the choice of people looking for a fence that is maintenance free. Follow these simple steps to properly treat your cedar fence.

How to Treat A Cedar Fence

Cedar Fence
  1. Purchase a clear wood protector. Thompson's brand is a good choice, but there are many to choose from at your local home improvement store. Expect to pay between $10 and $20 per gallon. Clear wood sealant is made with oil that provides long lasting protection from the elements. It will protect your cedar fence from sunlight and water, while also preserving its natural beauty.

  2. Clean your cedar fence with a garden hose or high-pressure washer. Check for and remove any stains or marks.

  3. Make sure the wood is clean and dry before applying two coats of the clear wood protectant. Use a brush and work the protectant into the grain of the wood. Wipe off any excess protectant to prevent visible drip marks.

  4. Apply another coat of protectant every two years. Keep sprinklers from hitting the fence to prevent moisture buildup and shortening the life of the fence. Prevent vines and bushes from growing onto the fence, which will also shorten the life of your fence.

  5. Check your fence for any areas of rot. Replace individual stiles as needed, and treat new wood with same clear wood protectant.


  • Do not apply wood protectant over previously stained or painted wood.

About the Author

Dan Ames has been a professional writer for nearly 20 years and has won national and international awards for creativity. He received a journalism degree from the University of Wisconsin and has been published in a variety of magazines, journals and websites, including eHow and Pluck on Demand.