19 Types of Fence Posts for Your Backyard Fence

Learn the 19 different types of fence posts for your backyard fence including materials, fence post caps and styles.
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White backyard fence with decorative fence post caps

If you have a fence and are looking for creative ways to enhance it, you may want to consider the fence posts. The fence posts are the foundation of a fence, and often overlooked as a place where one can make improvements.

The posts of your fence can be used for more than just holding your slats up. You can hang lights and plants, and play with mixed material construction, color, and design.

Using posts to bring some variety and appeal to your fence is simple and easy. Whether you already have a fence and are looking to add just a little something, or have not yet built your fence and are considering materials, enhancing your fence posts is worth consideration.

What are some things to keep in mind when considering augmenting your fence posts?

Pros:

  1. Cost effective – If you have an existing fence and are simply looking to enhance it, doing something with your posts can be very cost effective. Hanging planters on your posts is an example of a cheap and easy way to add a new element to your fence.

  2. Dynamic – Adding something to fence posts can break up the look of a typical fence.

Cons:

  1. Appeal – Many options for enhancing fence posts are not traditional. Making changes to something as expensive as a fence can have lasting ramifications. Not everyone likes the same thing, and these changes may affect the way others look at the fence. This has the potential of affecting future resale.

A. Types of Fence Posts by Material)

1. Wood posts

Wood is by far the most popular post material.

Wood fence post

Wood fencing has been around for quite some time now. It has withstood the test of time and is a regular fixture in our surroundings. Choosing the best wood posts for our homes is dictated by the duration of our stay in that home. Pressure-treated wood lasts longer than most materials.

Treating the wood can also ensure it surpasses the mean lifespan of untreated wood. Wood can be an affordable, readily available concrete substitute.

Pros

  • It is comfortable and straightforward to put up.
  • Wood is available rather cheaply and readily.
  • It can add some decorative element to a garden.

Cons

  • It can be challenging to maintain.
  • Wood often rots or is infected by insects.

Types of wood used for fence posts:

  • Cedar
  • Oak
  • Cottonwood
  • Douglas Fir
  • Pine

2. Metal posts

Steel fence

These are made up of steel and are at times made using durable rail steel. They can be made in a range of shapes like a Y, at or other shapes and they often support a variety of wire mesh or wires. It is one of the more permanent concrete alternatives for fence posts.

Pros

  • Steel posts are quite robust, substantial and long-lasting.
  • It can be ideal for sloped and uneven land.
  • Most are galvanized or have a powder coating to limit their rusting.

Cons

  • Steel can be quite costly to buy.
  • Steel lacks versatility.
  • It is quite heavy hence requires experts to install them safely and correctly.

3. Aluminum posts

Aluminum fence post


Source: Home Depot

These posts are made up of aluminum and are ideal for those people needing a little privacy. They are not only attractive but also quite stylish.

Pros

  • They are quite durable, affordable, versatile and often need little maintenance.
  • They are easy to install.
  • They come in a range of colors and designs

Cons

  • Aluminum is more costly compared to wood. However, it costs less in the long run as there are no maintenance costs required.
  • Aluminum posts are not as active as steel posts.

4. Vinyl

Vinyl fence and post

PVC fencing or vinyl fencing has been used for quite some time now, but it still is relatively new.

While new PVC fencing products often turned yellow, became brittle or sagged after a few years, today’s products are not only durable but also come in a range of designs. I recommend having an expert install it as slight deviations are often quite visible in the complete fence.

Pros

  • PVC fences are available in a variety of styles.
  • PVC fences are relatively cheaper.
  • PVC fences are durable and robust since most have some interior aluminum.

Cons

  • It has a high upfront cost.
  • It often turns brittle and cracks in excess temperatures.

PVC fence prices vary depending on the type of fence you are purchasing. Picket fence cost about £15.5 for each linear foot while privacy fence goes for £31. Labor costs are usually around £35. Find more items at this website

5. Rebar

These are made from rebar and are a suitable fit for a temporary fence. They often need insulators.

Pros

  • Relatively durable.
  • Easy to install.

Cons

  • They need round post insulators.

6. Fiberglass

These are very light hence installing them is easy and can be done quickly. They are ideal for semi-permanent or permanent fences.

Pros

  • They are flexible.
  • They can withstand harsh weather conditions.
  • They are easy to install.

Cons

  • They tend to be a bit expensive.

7. Brick

Fence with brick post

These are made from cement and brick. They are relatively durable, and you have the leeway to design them how you please.

Pros

  • Bricks are easily available.
  • They are relatively cheap.

Cons

They are not as durable as other posts.

8. Granite

Granite is used for fence post caps.

Granite fence post capThese can be excellent picks for your lawn, landscapes, and driveways. They are not only good looking but may also be made with your preferred post caps.

Pros

  • They are easy to install.
  • You can easily modify them.

Cons

  • They are a bit scarce.

9. Composite

Composite Fence Post


Source: Home Depot

Pros:

  • Durable
  • Reasonable Cost
  • Low maintenance
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • Not natural

10. Stone

Stone fence post

Source: Home Depot

Pros:

  • Looks fabulous
  • Solid
  • Low maintenance

Cons:

  • Expensive (very expensive).

Fence Post Tops (Caps)

Another consideration when choosing a post is the top.  You can leave as-is or add some decorative element to it.  Here are the different types of fence post tops.

1. Copper

Copper fence post top

Source: Home Depot

2. Stone

 

3. Glass light

If you have the budget, adding lights atop fence posts can look fabulous and illuminate your property.

Glass light fence post cap

Source: Home Depot

4. Moulded Cap

You can spruce up the cap with a moulded design such as the following.

Moulded fence post cap


Source: Home Depot

5. Flat Top

Flat copper fence post cap

Source: Home Depot

6. Gothic

Gothic style fence post cap

Source: Home Depot

7. Mansard

Just like a mansard roof, you can get a hipped fence post cap.

Hipped fence post cap

Source: Home Depot

8. Hipped Fence Post Cap

You can also opt for the hipped style cap.

Hipped fence post cap

Source: Home Depot

9. Decorative Wood Top

Decorative wood fence post top

Source: Home Depot

Fence Post Ideas (Photo Gallery)

Posts of variable length and color can spice up an otherwise traditional fence design.


Posts of variable length and color can spice up an otherwise traditional fence design.

Another fence playing with color. On this fence, the posts are rounded giving a fun and playful design.

Another fence playing with color. On this fence, the posts are rounded giving a fun and playful design.

Placing plant potters on the top of fence posts brings a bit of life to the fence.

Placing plant potters on the top of fence posts brings a bit of life to the fence.

Hanging planters from the posts is a good way of increasing visual appeal if you are looking for more greenery.

Hanging planters from the posts is a good way of increasing visual appeal if you are looking for more greenery.

Adding a lighting element to a fence post allows you to illuminate the entire perimeter of your space.

Adding a lighting element to a fence post allows you to illuminate the entire perimeter of your space.

A simple white light element posts this iron bar fence design.

A simple white light element posts this iron bar fence design.

While some lighting designs are built into the design, it is not impossible to add an element after the fence is already constructed. Hanging lanterns from wooden fence posts is an inexpensive way to bring some light into your fenced-in area.


While some lighting designs are built into the design, it is not impossible to add an element after the fence is already constructed. Hanging lanterns from wooden fence posts is an inexpensive way to bring some light into your fenced-in area.

Lights and plants are not the only thing that you can hang from a fence post. Bring some utility to your fence by hanging gardening supplies like this fence has.

Lights and plants are not the only thing that you can hang from a fence post. Bring some utility to your fence by hanging gardening supplies like this fence has.

10-fence-postsIf you are looking to make a mixed material fence, posts are the best place to mix it up. This fence is an iron bar fence posted by brick corner pieces.

If you are looking to make a mixed material fence, posts are the best place to mix it up. This fence is an iron bar fence posted by brick corner pieces.

Another mixed material fence with brick. The brick posts here give a lot of strength to this bar fence.

Another mixed material fence with brick. The brick posts here give a lot of strength to this bar fence.

This fence uses mixed materials and a lighting element to really brighten up this patio area.

This fence uses mixed materials and a lighting element to really brighten up this patio area. Source: Zillow Digs™

This shorter fence also uses mixed materials. The bars are posted by concrete. Concrete is an often overlooked material in fences, but can be used to great effect in the right hands.

This shorter fence also uses mixed materials. The bars are posted by concrete. Concrete is an often overlooked material in fences, but can be used to great effect in the right hands.

Wooden fences can also be enhanced with mixed construction.


Wooden fences can also be enhanced with mixed construction.

Adding a design element to a fence post is a good way to bookmark a fence. This medieval looking design punctuates the fence well.

Adding a design element to a fence post is a good way to bookmark a fence. This medieval looking design punctuates the fence well. Source: Fotorus / Flickr

The element on these fence posts tie together the sleek and clean design.

The element on these fence posts tie together the sleek and clean design. Source: Wandering Rambler / Flickr

Picking a complementary color for posts can make a fence pop.

Picking a complementary color for posts can make a fence pop. Source: Michael Coghlan / Flickr

Varied color and size contrasts the posts from the fence itself in this picket style fence.

Varied color and size contrasts the posts from the fence itself in this picket style fence. Source: Wandering Rambler / Flickr

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