Wood or Vinyl Fencing – Which is the Best Choice?

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Wood or vinyl fencing – When it comes time to replace your fencing or install a new fence, the question arises whether to install wood fencing or to opt for modern vinyl fencing?

Thinking about a vinyl vs wood fence, it’s fair to say that wooden fencing used to be the automatic choice when steel or brass materials proved overly costly. However, with improvements to materials and production methods, vinyl fencing now has a lot more going for it than in years past. With the rising costs of lumber, the prices can be comparable.

Both types of fencing can add value to your home but each has different looks.

When factoring in your budget, you must consider the price per linear foot of fencing as well as labor charges which are also usually factored per linear foot.

Additional Costs to Consider

  • Maintenance costs: Ongoing maintenance expenses for wood fencing, such as staining and sealing, versus minimal upkeep for vinyl.
  • Durability: Compare the longevity of wood vs vinyl fencing for your climate.

Is Wood or Vinyl Fencing Better

Here I explain the pros and cons of each and give you my verdict. When considering the best fencing for land, consider the benefits of each as well as the main reasons you want to install or replace a fence.

People want fences for different reasons. Fences can help:

  • Create privacy from neighbors or from the street
  • Keep pets and children inside the fence boundary
  • Enclose a yard with a swimming pool
  • Create an additional barrier to entry
  • Corral animals such as livestock
  • Keep wildlife, such as deer and javelina out
  • Define your property
  • Create areas on your property
  • Minimize pollution, especially if you are on a dirt road
Wood or Vinyl Fencing – Which is the Best Choice

Reasons to Choose Wood Fencing

Real timber wooden fencing is the traditional choice. It’s classic.

  • Natural beauty: Classic and natural look; blends well with outdoor environments
  • Customization: Can be cut to fit
  • Eco-friendly: Renewable resource when sourced responsibly; can choose sustainably harvested wood
  • Staining: Can be painted or stained in any color
  • Can repair: May be able to be repaired; can replace individual baords

Things to Know About Wood Fencing

Beyond the pleasing appearance, wood has to be treated with a protective coating to avoid it getting damaged by the weather. It can suffer from insects such as termites eating away at it or general rot as the wood gets excessively wet and cannot dry out quickly enough. This will depend a lot on your climate. In arid regions, rot will be less of an issue.

As wooden fencing can degrade significantly over time, it can impact negatively on the curb appeal of your property.

Without proper and regular maintenance, you may need to replace the whole lot eventually. If you don’t, it can leave a negative impact with potential buyers if you plan on selling the property further down the line.

However, as far as costs go, you can make a wooden fence cheaply if you use one from reclaimed pallets. A pallet fence is very inexpensive to make. Otherwise, depending on the cost of lumber, it may be more cost effective to opt for vinyl. 

As far as installation, a wooden fence is usually more expensive to install than a vinyl fence.

Reasons to Choose Vinyl Fencing

  • Durable, long-lasting: Often last longer than wood
  • Low maintenance: Less maintenance over time
  • Variety: Available in multiple colors and styles
  • Attractive: Can have a more modern appearance; may be more appropriate in some neighborhoods
  • Weather resistance: Can withstand weather
  • Cost-effective: Often more cost-effective in the long run

Things to Know About Vinyl Fencing

Vinyl fencing is a newer choice. Vinyl fence panels come in non-textured plain colors. You can choose white or brighter or darker tones depending on what fits well with the look of your home and other structures on your property.

There’s also a wood-like appearance through Timberland color choices that resembles wood from a distance without the negatives of having to stain it and it weathering. Another direction to go is BuffTech which is a fencing color that adds real texture, so it feels more like wood as well.

Maintenance is easier with vinyl than wood. The vinyl fence only needs a spray down with water and perhaps a soapy wash every half-year or so. There’s no patching up holes or re-applying paint or a protective coating to the wood. In addition, you won’t have to worry about insects or pests boring into the fencing. Rot won’t be an issue either.

Most homeowners are also unaware that vinyl is a lot stronger than wood. It provides both strength and flexibility which means it is less likely to need replacing over time.

With the rising cost of lumber, it is difficult to predict if the cost of vinyl or wood fencing will be more expensive. Vinyl fencing is sold per linear foot. One downside is that vinyl fencing is often more expensive to install than a wood fence.

A vinyl fence is a great option for homeowners who are looking for a low cost and durable fencing solution. A vinyl fence is made of PVC plastic that is designed to last for years. It is also easy to clean and does not require any painting or staining.

Vinyl fences are a popular choice for many homeowners. Vinyl fences are attractive, easy to maintain, and durable.

Environmental Considerations

When choosing between wood and vinyl fencing, you may also want to consider the environment.


  • Wood fences come from trees, so you may want to think about how cutting down trees affects forests and wildlife. You can find companies that source from manufacturers where the wood comes from places that grow trees again after cutting them down.
  • Vinyl fences are made from a type of plastic called PVC. Making PVC can affect the environment because it uses chemicals and energy.


After a fence is too old, what happens to it?

Untreated wood fences can be recycled or can naturally break down in the environment. However, types of wood fences with paint or other treatments won’t be able to recycled.

Vinyl is a bit harder to recycle. It doesn’t break down in nature like wood.

Which Fencing Option is Best?

When choosing the right fencing for your property, you must consider the purpose for installing a fence, your budget for materials and installation, aesthetics, and how much fencing you will need.

Unless you’re sold on wood as a fencing material, then vinyl is going to be an affordable option. It provides far greater flexibility with color and material selection (can include a wood-like appearance) but without the drawbacks.

A good vinyl fencing that is made with thicker PVC can last a couple of decades too. This is longer than most wooden fences will manage.

When it comes to replacing your fencing, vinyl is usually a far better material of choice. It’s not expensive because it’s made from PVC and is easier to manufacture, meaning the homeowner can save money as a result.

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2 thoughts on “Wood or Vinyl Fencing – Which is the Best Choice?”

  1. Thanks for helping me learn more about wood and vinyl fencing. It’s good to know that vinyl fencing is actually a lot stronger than wood. I’m interested to learn if this type of fencing would be ideal if you want a really durable fence for your area.

  2. Thanks for pointing out that vinyl is a durable fence option, and it offers an affordable rate. My husband and I bought a new property, and we are interested in hiring a professional that can install fences for privacy and security purposes. We want a cost-effective option, so we will consider vinyl fencing services.

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