What Are the Pros and Cons of Aluminum Fencing?

What Are the Pros and Cons of Aluminum Fencing?

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If you’re looking for a metal fence, galvanized steel is often the first consideration. But there are several reasons – like proximity to the ocean – that might make aluminum fences a better choice.

Let’s take a closer look at what the pros and cons of aluminum fencing are, so you can make an informed decision.

The Benefits of aluminum Fencing

aluminum fencing is a great choice for many applications, and there are several benefits to choosing an aluminum fence for your property, including:

  • aluminum fence panels are much lighter than a steel panel of the same size, which makes them easier to transport and install
  • If you are installing aluminum gates and you plan to automate them, they’ve got a big weight advantage over the same size gate in steel, so you can use a smaller gate motor or gate operator
  • aluminum does not rust like steel (even galvanized steel) does, so it can be used in marine environments
  • There are many types of aluminum fences to choose from, including aluminum ornamental fences, horizontal aluminum fences, and even aluminum chain link fence options to choose from
  • Aluminum fences can be duplex coated, either by painting or epoxy coating, and there may even be options for anodizing aluminum for specific applications

The Drawbacks of Aluminum Fencing

Unfortunately, there’s not a single fence type out there that is all positive and has no negatives, and aluminum fencing is no different. Here are a few of the downsides to aluminum fencing:

  • Aluminum fencing is usually more expensive than galvanized steel fencing simply because aluminum is a more expensive metal
  • Aluminum fencing is made from softer metal, so it’s not as strong as a similarly sized steel fence system
  • Aluminum fencing is a less common option, so you might need to order your fencing earlier to get it installed when you need it
  • This is a more specialized type of fence system, so there are fewer suppliers, and you might not be able to find replacement parts as easily

What Kind of Projects Is Aluminum Fencing Best Suited To?

Because aluminum is softer and lighter than steel, it’s usually easier to tamper with this kind of fence, and it’s easier to cut it.

That means that it’s not well suited to applications that require a higher level of security unless it’s being installed with a secondary security system like electric fencing, a taut wire or FDS system, or a combination of those types of fence.

Aluminum fence systems are usually used for sites where galvanized steel options would be prone to premature corrosion, so they are often used near the ocean.

Aluminum fences can also be used for sites where fences are used more for demarcation of areas than preventing access, including sporting facilities and event areas.

Finally, you might consider an aluminum fence if weight is a factor. Aluminum fences weigh considerably less than other kinds of metal fences, so they are often used on cantilevered slabs and similar where every pound matters!

How to Get the Right Aluminum Fence for Your Project

The best way to get the right fence of any type – including aluminum fence – for any project is to start by researching the products on the market.

There aren’t as many aluminum fence manufacturers as there are steel fence manufacturers, so you should be able to find a few short-listed options fairly easily.

Request detailed product data, drawings, and specifications from each manufacturer, and then compare all the options.

Look at things like the grade of aluminum being used, the wall thicknesses and component diameters or sizes, and if it’s coated, what kind of coating it is.

At the same time, find out what (if any) warranty the manufacturer offers on the product, and then use all that information to make the best choice overall.

Where Can You Find An Aluminum Fence Installer?

Not every fence company installs aluminum fencing, but generally, if you contact a company that installs the steel version of the fence you’re interested in, they should be able to quote your project.

So if you want aluminum chain link fence, contact chain link fence companies. If you want an ornamental fence, contact ornamental fence installers and so on.

Always ask for photos and references of similar projects, though! Aluminum fence is not cheap, so you want to be sure you’re working with a professional who will get the job done right.

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