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How to Repair a Split Rail Fence

Jonah Morrissey

Split rail fences are a country classic. They are durable and resistant to even harsh weather conditions. Over time however, the rails can become rotted or damaged and require replacement. Repairing a split rail fence is not a difficult task once you understand the process. The rails slide into holes in the posts and rest between posts. Therefore, replacing a rail requires that the one post that the damaged rail is resting between will need to be removed for replacement. Cedar is a common wood used for split rail fences because it is naturally rot resistant.

A well maintained split rail fence complements its natural surroundings.
  1. Dig a hole using the post hole digger right next to one of the posts on either end of the rail you need to replace. Dig the hole down to the bottom of the post so you will be able to lift the post out.

  2. Pull the post up and slide it over toward the hole you dug enough to be able to remove the damaged rail.

  3. Remove the damaged rail. Insert the replacement rail in the place of the damaged rail.

  4. Slide the post back into place and fill the dirt back in around the post and into the dug out hole. Pack the dirt around the post in with your feet to complete the repair.