Fence installation is one of the most rewarding and worthwhile home improvement projects. It is particularly fulfilling for homeowners who actually do the work on their own. Most modern fences have a partly modular design. This means that a lot of the construction can be handled with minimal power tools or construction experience. Just about anybody can install their own modular fence, as long as they can handle the post installation. This article explains how to install fence posts into soil.

Digging the Post Holes

Setting a fence post in soil is not very complicated, but the work can be demanding and physically exhausting, especially if you have to dig through rocky, heavy, or dense soil. Some soil will be very easy to dig up, and you will have no trouble making the holes for the post.

The necessary depth of your holes really depends on how tall your fence needs to be. There aren't any set rules though, because it also depends on the density and strength of your soil. To be safe, and to ensure that your posts are plenty strong for whatever type of fence you are going to install, you should make sure your post holes are half as deep as the post is going to be tall.

So, if you are going to have a 4' tall post, you want to have 2' of post in the soil. This means you will need at least 6' of post. It is always better to buy extra post, and then cut off the top when all of the posts are set. This way you can make sure that they're all level with each other. It also gives you wiggle room when setting the post into the holes.

Pouring Concrete Footings

Even though it is not always necessary, it is usually a good idea to pour concrete footings around your post. To do this, you want to pour concrete mix and water into the hole as you set the post. That is, you put the post in the hole, and then pour the water and concrete mixture in around it. You mix them together in the hole, not beforehand. This creates a strong concrete bond that coalesce with the soil and results in solid posts.

Your posts also need to be level as the concrete dries. Just check your post with a level and, if necessary, use 2x4s to prop the post up and keep it level as the concrete dries.

When your post are properly installed, you can be certain that your fence will be strong and reliable over the years. Whether you want a vinyl version or a chain link fence, knowing how to set your own posts can save you a lot of money.