What Should you Know about the Electric Fence?
Animals such as deer, squirrels, raccoons, rabbits, and others can quickly destroy a garden. Numerous traps, granules, and sprays are available for purchase at garden centers and hardware stores, but they must be applied frequently in order to be effective. Electric garden fencing shows promise as a permanent animal pest deterrent, outlasting both repellents and traps.
The psychological barrier formed by an electric fence system is sufficient to keep out unwanted animals. The animal discovers the "dangerous" area is off-limits after touching the fence and receiving an electric shock. It learns rapidly to avoid the barrier after being taught to do so.
The low voltage, the pulsating current that flows through the fence is not lethal to humans or animals, but it is an effective and unpleasant surprise. Read on if you're considering replacing your existing garden fence with an electric one.
How Does an Electric Fence Work?
The electric fence system is comprised of only a few basic elements, including a fence charger, also known as an "energizer" or "fence controller," fence wire, fence posts and insulators, a ground rod, and connection cables. These elements are together referred to as the "fence controller." A power source supplies the charger with electricity, which it then transforms into a pulse that has a very high voltage (2,000 to 10,000 volts), but a very low amperage (about 0.12 amps). It does so approximately once every second, and it is also known as the "shock." The pulse is what is released into the isolated fence line.
When nothing else comes into contact with the electrified fence wire, the current flows along the wire and creates an open circuit. This is analogous to the way electricity flows to a light switch that has been switched off.
When an animal contacts a live wire, the current begins to flow through the wire and down to the ground. This completes the circuit, much like turning on a light switch. The point of contact between the animal and the electric pulse causes the animal to experience a shock. The discomfort that the animal feels is very temporary and does not result in any lasting damage to its body.
Different Varieties of Electric Fences
The following are the two primary categories of electric fences that can be installed:
Some farmers also use a type of fencing known as semi-permanent, which, despite its name, is only somewhat less long-lasting than permanent fencing.
The two types of fences serve different objectives and have diverse qualities, in addition to the evident distinction that exists between the two.
A temporary fence is utilized most commonly for regulated rotational grazing as well as the management of animals that move quite slowly. Wires that are lightweight, and easy to set up and remove, such as poly wire or poly tape, are the sort of wires that are typically utilized in their construction.
Because they don't endure very long and are simple to move, we refer to them as transitory because it's not difficult to do so. A permanent fence, on the other hand, is utilized for the long-distance containment of livestock that is known for its rapid movement and often consists of high-tensile electric wire.
The installation process is naturally more difficult and time-consuming, but the product has a longer lifespan and is more effective when it comes to restraining animals with a higher rate of movement, such as horses.
Which Type of Fencing do I Require, Temporary or Permanent?
Consider the surrounding environment before making a decision regarding the sort of electric fencing system to install. You need to determine not only the reason why you are putting the fence in the first place but also the resources you have available to construct it in the correct manner.
The following are the most important takeaways from this situation:
- The pressure from wildlife and livestock
Installing temporary fencing is quicker, requires fewer resources, and can be done at a lower cost. However, this is only a temporary solution that won't even be able to keep wild animals away, let alone livestock that moves quickly.
Therefore, it is an option worth considering if you require an inexpensive and speedy fence to control intensive grazing or to contain smaller animals. A permanent solution is required, however, if you require long-distance fencing that is resilient to a variety of climatic conditions and will continue to serve its purpose for decades to come.
It prevents wild creatures from approaching, and it secures the confinement of livestock. But, it does take more expensive materials and more labor.
How do I Prepare for the Installation of an Electric Fence?
Finding the ideal location in which to install electric fencing is the first and most important step. After deciding where to put electric fencing, measure the area. The wheel not only measures the land, but it also allows you to feel all of the bumps and valleys on the ground, which allows you to know what you are dealing with and plan accordingly.
After you have the measurements, you can select the kind and amount of material that you will need to complete the project.
The next step is to determine where the gate will be located and how much space it should have.
The rule is to determine what the largest piece of equipment is that will be brought in and out of the building, and then make the gate large enough to accommodate that item.
You should also find out where the water will come from and where possible shelters are located in case you end up needing them.
To summarise it all, there are four primary steps involved in the preparation process:
- Find the optimal location.
- Take some measurements of the area.
- Determine the location to install the gate
- Find out where the water and the safe havens are going to be.
Overview of the Installation
First things first, locate a safe location for your fence charger that is in close proximity to a battery, solar panel, or AC outlet. It should be a closed facility that is shielded from the elements; alternatively, you can choose chargers that have protective housing that is built to withstand the elements on its own.
You can surround the space by erecting fence posts all the way around it. They ought to be spaced somewhere between 15 and 20 feet apart, and one-third of their length ought to be buried. You can install them a little further apart if the terrain is straight and flat, but if it is hilly and bumpy, you should install them closer together.
Put some support behind the corner posts. Because corner posts are subjected to the most strain, they are typically constructed to be both longer and wider than the other fence posts. Braces are required to strengthen these posts so that they can withstand the pressure.
Attach wire insulators to the top of the fence posts. Make your selection based on the kind of wire you intend to use as well as the kind of posts you intend to put in place.
Dot the full length of the fence with the wire. In order to properly connect the wire to the posts, you should make use of the insulators. Additionally, the number of wire lines that run along the fence can vary depending on the requirements.
Grounding rods should be installed. You should use at least three grounding rods that are each six feet long, and you should install them in close proximity to the charger but about ten feet apart from one another. The grounding rods ought to be buried at a depth of at least four feet, but the general rule is to leave no more than two inches of exposed metal above the soil.
- Connect your fence charger's ground wire to the ground rod using a ground rod clamp.
- Connect the charger's hot red terminal to the fence wire.
- Check the boundary of the fence when the electric charger is working.
Finally: Think about the dangers that it poses to people, animals, and plants.
When it comes to electricity, the current is harmful. Having said that, the amps that electric fences pulse at are very low. The current that they generate is not strong enough to kill a squirrel, let alone an adult or a child.
The electric shock is excruciating, and the pain will persist for a few minutes after it has passed, but it does not cause any kind of burn or other injuries. If a person of any age, including an adult, a child, a pet, or any other sentient being touches it while it is in contact with the ground, they will receive a shock but will not be harmed in any other way.
Birds that land on the wire won't receive an electric shock. Nevertheless, it is a good idea to post warning signs on electric fencing to help visitors who are unaware of the danger avoid coming into contact with the fence by accident.
In wet weather, excessively tall grass and shrubs with overhanging branches can cause the system to become overloaded and fail. In order to avoid this issue, the grass that is growing underneath the fence needs to be kept at a short length, and any other vegetation that might come into contact with the wires needs to be pruned back.