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Product Guide: Vinyl/PVC

A versatile option, vinyl fencing is cost-effective, aesthetically appealing, and low-maintenance.

  • Cost-effective – Vinyl fences come with extensive warranties, with some manufacturers providing lifetime warranties for their products.
  • Aesthetically appealing – Vinyl fences come in a variety of styles and colors. They can be made to look like many different types of fences, from wood to ornamental, making them a naturally appealing choice that can be more economical than but just as pleasing as its authentic counterpoints.
  • Low-maintenance – Vinyl comes pre-designed, meaning that painting is not required. Maintenance is generally delegated to a periodic washing.

Vinyl fences are used in many applications, including residential, commercial, industrial, and agricultural.

  • Residential – A versatile option, homeowners are attracted to the many styles of vinyl, from those that conform to pool safety codes to attractive privacy styles.
  • Commercial / Business – The low-maintenance needed for vinyl makes it a popular choice among businesses including restaurants, hotels, and amusement parks.
  • Industrial – Vinyl is an economical choice to add architectural intrigue to an industrial complex, as well as provide a shield between citizens and any waste or storage areas.
  • Agricultural – The smoothness of vinyl provides a safe environment, particularly for horses.

CREATION & STYLES

Vinyl is created by combining vinyl resin with various additives in a heating and cooling process, creating a bond between the ingredients. This makes the final product extremely durable, even in extreme climates.

Vinyl and Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) come in a wide variety of sizes and thicknesses, which are compatible with many different applications.

SPECIFICATIONS

The American Society for Testing and Materials recommends the following    minimum standards for producing vinyl fencing:

  • D792: Physical Property of Rigid Vinyl
  • D256: Izod Impact
  • D638: Tensile Yield Strength
  • D790: Flexural Yield Strength
  • D638: Tensile Modules
  • D635: Rate of Burning
  • D696: Thermal Expansion
  • D1435: Outdoor Weathering
  • D1784: Cell Classification
  • D4726: Specs for White Rigid PVC Exterior-Profile Extrusions (Assembled Windows and Doors)
  • D2444: Impact Resistance
  • F1999-00: Installation Practices for Vinyl

QUESTIONS

When specifying a vinyl fence, it is recommended that all homeowners, architects, engineers, and specifiers consider the following questions:

  • Is it made in the U.S.A.?
  • How much wind load does this fence need to bear?
    • Vinyl fences are durable, withstanding extreme climate conditions. The properties of vinyl make it resistant to fire, meaning that it is a self-extinguishing material.
  • Do the rails need to be reinforced, or is the standard gauge adequate for your purposes?
  • Do the posts need to be reinforced with concrete? How much?
  • Do the posts need to be installed below the frost line?

Local building codes should always be consulted for the minimum fencing requirements in that area.