1-800-355-2335 | Mon-Fri: 9am-5pm EST | Contact Us

Click for Page 1 - Before You Begin Fence InstallationChain Link Fence Installation Manual
[ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ 5 ] [ 6 ] [ 7 ] [ 8 ] [ 9 ]

Chain Link Fence Layout:

Three-Four-Five Triangulation Method to Squaring Corners for Fence Installation:

Use the three-four-five method when square corners are necessary.

  1. Drive stakes a foot or two away from where you want corner and end posts to be located; this will allow you to drill/ dig holes without obstructions. It may also allow you to 'drop' the string while excavating for fence post holes. Be careful not to bump or move stakes. If you remove the string to excavate holes, take care to restretch the string line back the way it was prior to removing.
  2. Stretch masonry guide string tight between these stakes. This string will represent the location of the fence and serve as a guide string as you set posts. Posts will be set in concrete or driven 1/8-1/4" from string line.
  3. Intermediate stakes may be required for longer stretches of fence. Be sure to pull string taut as string which sags or moves with the wind will cause posts to be set incorrectly. Keep in mind, the fence can only be as straight as the guide string.
  4. Locate gate posts first and mark their location with upside down post hole marking paint. Next measure each stretch of fence. Chain link fence posts are typically spaced a maximum of ten feet apart. For aesthetic reasons, space posts evenly, but do NOT exceed ten feet between posts. If you plan on installing privacy slats or another type of material that will increase wind load, consider using 8' or 6' post spacing. Also consider upgrading the framework, i.e. posts and rail to a larger diameter and thicker wall thickness. Heavier chain link framework such as HF20 and/ or HF40 are excellent choices for use with chain link fences with aluminum diagonal or PVC privacy slats or privacy screening. Click for Page 3 - Setting Chain Link Fence Posts


Consult with our Hoover Fence Company sales associate for the proper grade of chain link fabric, posts, toprail, and fittings suitable for your fencing project. We offer free fence estimates, fence consultation services, and remarkable before and after-the-sale service.

Related Images:
(Click to Enlarge)

Click For More Product Information
Upside Down Paint
: Click image for additional product information. Used for marking fence post holes.

Mark fence post locations with upside down paint or stakes
Mark fence post locations. Be sure to account for auger diameter and post diameter when marking.

Visually check fence post hole locations. If necessary, put post in empty hole and check with a level for accuracy.
Check hole location prior to filling with concrete mix. The hole should not be centered perfectly under string line; it should be offset slightly so that the post will be centered in the concrete footer. If necessary put post in empty hole and check plumb with a level. The post should be plumb to the string with approx. 1/8-1/4" clearance. If not, fence post hole will need 'shaved'

Fill post holes with concrete mix
Fill post holes with concrete mix. Do not fill holes completely. This may cause posts to heave prematurely.

Hoover Fence Company offers nationwide delivery for chain link, aluminum fence, vinyl fence, gate operators, and fence accessories. Many fence orders receive free shipping! Hoover Fence Company are full Little Beaver Earth auger authorized dealers. Be sure to drill and dig fence post holes to the proper depth and diameter. How to install fence near existing structures. Premixed concrete sold in bags are convenient for small fence installations. The proper way to mix cement for a fence installation. Using fast setting cement to set fence posts. How to mix cement for fence projects. Using a wheelbarrow to pour cement for post footings.
Prepare for your HooverFence.com fence delivery. Chain link fence orders can arrive on small and large trucks, covered trailers and flatbed fence trucks. Forklifts are usually not required, however be prepared to hand unload fence tubing, rolls of chain link, bags and boxes of chain link fittings. Chain link fence posts holes can be dug by hand with post hole diggers and spud bars, small gas powered augers, or skid steers with hydraulic augers. Size your auger bit accordingly to the height and grade of fence materials to be installed. Once fence posts holes have been dug and cleaned out, check that each and every hole is in the correct spot. If you cannot tell visibly, place post in hole and plumb post. Post needs to sit plumb and be placed 1/8"-1/4" off the string line.

Fence Tip: Be sure to dig fence post holes to the proper depth and diameter for your region. Northern regions have frost depths deeper than the southern part of the country. 30-36" deep concrete footers suffice for most fence installations.

When you need to place a fence post near an existing structure, drilling near the structure is still better than hand digging with post hole diggers and spud bars from scratch. Here, a hole was drilled as safe to the existing fence as was safe. Hole will be hand dug, or 'shaved' so it can sit closer to the existing fence. Smaller fence projects are often set using a premixed bagged concrete. Often sold at do-it-yourself stores, 40, 60, and 80 pound bags are usually readily available for your fence project.Figure your fence post concrete requirements by using HooverFence.com's concrete calculator here. Premixed bags of concrete may be mixed by hand in a wheelbarrow with a shovel, or with a gas powered, or electric powered cement mixer. Mix concrete to a 'thick milkshake' like consistency. Do not mix too wet, or the soup-like texture will cause posts to sink, or the concrete may not set at all. For small chain link fence jobs where the job can be set and stretched in the same day, using a small amount of Quik Rok, or other brand of fast setting hydraulic cement with regular premix cement can save time and an extra trip to the jobsite. Quik Rok, fast setting hydraulic cement is available in 5 gallon pails and is a powder like material that can be used alone for small holes (core drilling in cement). You can also mix about a shovel full of this baking flour like material in with a wheelbarrow full of regular cement.

Fence Tip: Some fence spec jobs require concrete footers to be poured to the top, capped and trowelled. Use a pointing trowel for better appearance.

Once fence post holes have been dug and cleaned out (be sure to clean out post holes of loose dirt and debris), shovel cement into holes until they are near full. Leave cement down from the ground surface (grade) approx. 3". Holes should also be larger in diameter at the bottom than at top, 'bell-shaped'. Holes shaped like a carrot can heave prematurely.
Setting chain link fence posts for a commercial chain link fence How to concrete posts for a chain link fence - Hoover Fence Company What is the proper depth to set chain link fence posts - Hoover Fence Co Setting chain link fence posts to the proper depth and height for a 6' high fence How to install fence through an asphalt surface How to set a chain link fence post using masonry string and a turpedo level How high do you pour your cement when setting a chain link fence post How to sight in chain link fence posts on a sloped surface Hoover Fence Signs - 1-800-355-2335 - HooverFence.com
After chain link fence posts have been 'stuck', check cement level is correct. You should put more cement in if concrete levels are too low.

Fence Tip: Avoid pushing away your guide string to fill holes with cement if another is using it to 'stick' posts!

Fence post holes can be filled practically as fast as the cement batches can be mixed and poured. Often another person can follow the person filling the holes and 'stick' the fence posts. 'Sticking' fence posts simply means putting the posts in a hole that has already been filled with cement, plumb and tight to the string line. For chain link fences, line posts (intermediate posts) should be marked with a grade mark at 3" less than the height of fence being installed. Here a 6' high fence is being installed. Line posts are marked at 5'-9".

Fence Tip: Vinyl coated chain link fabric is more elastic than galvanized mesh and can 'shrink' slightly when stretched. Subtract an additional 1/2" if you're setting posts for a fence with vinyl coated fabric.

For chain link fences, terminal posts, i.e. end posts, corner posts, and gate posts, are marked at 1" more than the height of fence being installed. For a 6' high chain link fence, mark posts at 6'-1".

Fence Tip: Place a spare piece of tubing, or post that has not yet been set on the top of gate posts after setting and level these posts to one another. Gates (unless custom built by HooverFence.com) are usually perfectly square.

Chain link fence posts should be 'stuck' down to their respective grade marks and plumbed with guide string. Backfill with loose dirt and step gently on dirt surrounding posts to help hold them too height. If posts sink on you, concrete is too wet, or holes have filled with water. You can and should put your posts in their holes and check them to the string line with a level if you're not sure post holes have been dug in the right spot. It can be very frustrating if holes have not been checked for accuracy, then filled with cement. You'll find yourself trying to stick posts into the dirt surround the dug hole, but buried in cement. If this happens, pull post, redig hole, and try to catch up with your crew! On sloped terrain, it is sometimes necessary to set posts intentionally high, with grade marks exposed. The chain link height is actually taller when measuring diagonally. If in doubt, measure square with grade to help gauge your finished height of the fabric. Chain link is remarkably versatile and can be installed on any terrain.

Fence Tip: When in doubt, leave post high and cut off later. This is much easier than trying to extend the height of a chain link fence post!

Once posts have been set to grade, sight across the tops of the set posts and raise or lower them slightly to smooth out the top of the fence. Keep in mind, if you bury your grade mark slightly on one or more posts, plan to trench this same amount for the chain link fabric. The grade marks represent the bottom of the chain link fence. If your grade mark is 4" off the ground, so will be your fence and you may be filling underneath. Although most fences are simply installed to grade, or flow with the contour of the land, some applications would be better set perfectly level, i.e. tennis court enclosures, basketball court enclosures, baseball and softball backstops, sideline fences, and homerun fences. If excavating, grading, or asphalt/ concrete is to be poured later, or is already in place, the fence may need to be installed perfectly level. If this is the case, sighting with grade marks, using a string line with a level, or a transom will help immensely.

         "Hoover Fence Company's "How To Install A Chain Link Fence Manual" has given me the confidence to buy and install my own chain link fence. I checked bookstores and libraries for How-To books, and then found your fencing manual online; it is by far the best, most practical, most informative how to install chain link fence manual I have found yet! Kudos to you and your staff of knowledgeable and experienced fencers! Thanks also for the free fence estimating software and fence post concrete calculator! I plan to order some of your fence specialty tools later this week so I can fence like a pro. Thanks again for a job well done! - John C., Oklahoma