Aluminum Fencing Guide
How to Install an Aluminum Fence
Aluminum fences are among the easiest to install so long as you are thorough, patient and well prepared. Below are the standard instructions for installing an aluminum fence. In addition to this, we encourage you to download our How To Order Aluminum Fencing Guide which offers diagrams that supplement the instructions.
Before Installing Your Aluminum Fence
- Stake your yard and distinguish where you’ll place posts and gates.
- Check to make sure underground utilities, pool lines, and sprinkler systems have all been located. Calling Miss Utility will save you both major heartburn and money.
- Check all items on the packing list panels, posts, gates, caps, hinges, latches, paint and screws. If any part is missing, contact us immediately.
- Identify and separate the four styles of posts: Line posts have holes routed on opposite sides. Corner posts have holes routed on adjacent sides. End posts have holes routed on one side. Gate posts are routed like end posts, but the wall thickness is almost doubled to support the weight and use of the gate.
Important Information Regarding Your Aluminum Fence Installation
- Install your fence 2 to 3 inches off the ground to allow gates to work properly, and to allow maintenance of grass under the fence.
- All gates are built to fit openings. If your packing list says 4′ gate, then you need to account for a gate with a 4-foot opening.
- When setting gate posts, it’s important to get the opening exact. Gate posts must be topped out bubble level in order for channels to line up with channels on the panels. After you properly set the opening, it is good to lay a post on top of both gateposts and set a level on top to ensure that posts are evenly topped out.
- When digging holes to install the fence, your holes should be 6″ to 8″ in diameter and at least 24″ deep. In areas where freezing is a factor, fence posts need to be below the frost line. It is also a good practice to “bell out,” or widen, the bottom of the hole to prevent posts from heaving due to frost.
- Use as many full panels as you can. If a shorter panel is needed, you can custom cut a panel to any size to accommodate any line. Notch the end of the channel to fit inside the post, using the factory notch as a guide. Use a Saw-Z-All or notching tool to make your cuts.
- When inserting panels into a corner post, the channels on one panel need to be cut at an angle so that both panels fit all the way into the post.
Laying Out Your Aluminum Fence
- Layout and install your fence one line at a time. Start at a front corner or beside the house. Drive a stake at each end of the line and run a string line from stake to stake to ensure holes are marked in a straight line.
- Mark holes every 73 3/8″ with 2″ posts on center. If there is a gate in the line add 2″ to gate opening when marking, then resume the 73 3/8″ with 2″ posts panel spacing. So, if you have a 48″ gate opening, mark the holes for your gate posts 50″ on center with 2″ posts.
- Any sections that need to be custom cut should be at the back of the fence line or up next to the house for the best look.
Installing Your Aluminum Fence
- Dig all of the holes that you marked and place the posts in the holes. Set your first post in the center of the hole and pour your concrete. Level up the post in each direction and readjust the string line so that all posts will be in the center of holes throughout the entire line. Leave the posts a little high for topping out purposes. It is easier to adjust the posts down than it is to lift them up if adjustment is needed.
- Insert your first panel into the first post, bottom channel first, then the top two channels. Make sure screws are facing in, and that notches are all the way against the post. Screw the panel into the post. Go to the next hole and put the panel into the post, insert screws, level post up the string, and set this post. Repeat this procedure until the entire line is installed.
- Once the line is set, relevel and top out the two end posts. Take the string down and move it to the top of the two posts. Raise and lower the posts as necessary to give the fence line best-looking top possible. After the line is topped out, put the string to the outside of these posts near the top. Then walk the line and push all the posts over to where they are barely touching the string.
- Once this is complete, take down the string, step back and visually inspect the completed line for straightness, both vertically along the tops of the panels and horizontally, for bends in or out along a line.
- Layout and install the next line just like the first line. Continue this process until the entire fence is installed.
- Place caps on posts and gently tap them on with a rubber mallet. Try not to knock posts down or out of level. While installing caps, look for scratches or nicks that need to be touched up with paint. Use only the paint your fence comes with so that it matches the powder coating on the product.
If you still have questions or concerns, call us at 855 469-5421 and we’ll gladly help you over the phone!