If you own a chain link fence, it is important that you check the fence routinely for rust. However, if you find rust, you may not know why the rust is there, what to do next or how to prevent it in the future. Getting answers to these questions will help you to better care for your fence and help it last as long as it is designed to. Here are a few of the questions you may have about rust and your chain link fence.
Is it a Problem if the Chain Link Fence is Rusted?
Rust can be problematic for a chain link fence, as rust can weaken the metal. If your fence is in place to keep people off of your property, or to keep animals in, a weakened fence can be easier to breach. If left for an extended period of time, rust can also eat through the metal. This can leave gaps in your fence. Lastly, rust can affect the appearance of your fence. Most chain link fences are silver in color. When the fence is rusted, it turns into an orange or brown color, making it look unkempt and old. This can affect the curb appeal of your home.
How Can Rust Be Removed From a Chain Link Fence?
If you notice rust on your fence, you will want to take the time to remove the rust as quickly as possible. This helps prevent the rust from spreading and doing damage to the fence. Follow these steps to clean your chain link fence and remove rust in the process:
- Run a broom over the chain link fence to remove spiderwebs, leaves and other debris.
- Turn on your hose and spray the fence. For best results, use a nozzle that creates a jet stream to remove thick layers or dirt, dust and other residue. If you don't have a hose nozzle, position your thumb over the opening of the hose to create an effect similar to what you would get with a spray nozzle.
- Fill a bucket with warm water and add in a few drops of a mild liquid dish washing soap.
- Dip a scrubbing brush into the soapy water and begin scrubbing the fence. Start at the top of the fence and work your way towards the bottom.
- Spray the fence with your hose to remove any soap residue that remains.
- Use a plastic scrub pad to scrub away areas with light rust or to remove any gunk or build-up that remains on the fence. Use a wired brush to brush away areas with a lot of rust. If the rust still remains, rub a small grit piece of sandpaper over the rust or try a rust removal cleaner sold at home improvement stores.
- Use a dampened cloth to wipe away any rust removed by scrubbing, brushing or sanding.
- Dry the rust-affected areas with a rag, as they may be more susceptible to water, which can cause rust to develop again.
Can You Prevent Rust From Forming on a Chain Link Fence?
There are a few different things you can do to prevent rust from forming on a chain link fence. One of the easiest fixes is to spray the fence with a rust inhibitor spray. This can be done after thoroughly cleaning the fence and removing any rust that has already formed. This comes in a can similar to spray paint and can be sprayed directly on the fence to coat it. However, rust inhibitor spray doesn't last long. As such, it isn't an ideal fix, but will work if you don't have time to paint the fence.
The other way to prevent rust from forming is to paint your chain link fence. You can paint it using a clear paint or a colored paint. However, you will want to use a paint formulated for use on aluminum or galvanized steel, depending on what your chain link fence is made from. Simply clean the fence and use a brush or a paint sprayer to coat the fence. The paint helps prevent water from sitting directly on the metal, which can prevent rust from developing.
Rust is not something you want to see on your chain link fence. However, since the fence is exposed to a variety of outdoor elements, such as rain and water from sprinklers, it may develop rust at some point in its life. Knowing why rust is bad, how to remove rust and how to prevent it can help you take the correct action and ensure your fence does its job while lasting as long as possible.
For more information, contact a company like Elrod Fence Co.