in Gardens & Landscaping

Types of Wire Fences (Materials & Designs)

Here’s our types of wire fences design guide including different uses, materials, strongest and cheapest options. ​​See the best choices for wire fences for your home.
There are different types of wife fencing and each has its own use depending on the need. Whether you want to secure an area for security reasons, keep out animals, or mark a perimeter there is a specialized wire for that task.

In this article, we will talk about wire fencing and all the categories under it. Hopefully, as you read on, you’ll find the type of wife fencing to suit your needs and budget.

What is Wire Fencing? 

A wire fence is one of the most common types of fences. It is normally installed to contain a wide variety of things such as farm poultry, livestock on a ranch, prison inmates, animals in the zoo, and many more. It is also used to set boundaries in specific areas.

In residential places, wire fencing is used to protect the property against thieves and intruders and to secure the pets in your yard. 

Yes, wire fences are highly essential and they play a huge role in our lives. They can be used either for aesthetic, security, safety, industrial, or agricultural purposes. 

There are several wire fence designs – woven, welded, barbed, electric, and chicken. Each wire fencing type serves its own purpose and it has its pros and cons. But overall, installing the right wire fence will undoubtedly protect and improve your home or business site.

Different Types Of Wire Fencing 

Here are the various types of wire fencing and their uses:

Woven Wire Fencing

Woven wire fencing is generated by means of weaving strands of wire into different configurations. The most popular sample of a woven wire fencing style is the chain link design.

This type of wire fencing highlights a loose configuration that can be bent and stretched as it contains an excellent level of flexibility.

But since the pieces of wire have been interwoven, the whole wire fencing might start to unsnarl once a piece of wire becomes cut or broken.

What are the uses of woven wire fencing? Well, this type of fencing is generally used for perimeter fencing around yards, security or containment of pets, or for decorative application purposes.

Woven wire fences are also widely used for playgrounds, fenced backyards, and other commercial areas. To string a woven wire fence, specifically a chain link fence, a fence stretcher will be needed. Installing a chain link fence without the assistance of this tool might result in ugly, disorganized, and poor-functioning wire fencing.

Welded Wire Fencing

Unlike woven wire fences, welded wire fences have a much more attractive design. They also offer more decorative applications. 

However, welded wire fencing can also be built from industrially durable materials which is a more advisable option for urban and rural uses.

Welded wire fencing is normally and preferably used for both commercial and residential uses. It is generally used for securing residential and commercial properties, community or residential pools, parks, walkway designs in nature reserves, military areas, prisons, dog runs and kennels, gardens, farms, and ranch gates.

Barbed Wire Fencing

This type of wire fencing is economical and it doesn’t normally require a professional to install it. 

Barbed wire fencing is composed of twisted steel pieces of wire and it is completely different from the woven wire fence. Instead of the strands being intertwined with one another, the strands of a barbed-wire fence are entwined together.

Barbed pieces of wire are structured at regular intervals. People and their pets should not attempt to jump off or break through a barbed wire fence as the dangerous spikes can cause wounds and injury.

Barbed wire fences are generally used for places that need maximum security. Since the barbed wire spikes can cause injuries, thieves and intruders won’t attempt to jump through them. 

However, barbed wire fencing is also normally used to separate lines between ranches, containing cattle and livestock, restricting prisoners, protecting gardens from pests, and military areas.

A barbed wire is usually installed across a fence line by stretching and threading it from the post to the post on the other side. These posts are typically made out of wood and the tension is what keeps the barbed wire in its position.

It can be easy to install this type of fence, that’s why most homeowners are selecting this type of wire fencing. 

However, when installing it, you must wear durable protective gloves and use a staple gun. The wire must be stapled first to the post, then it should be pulled tightly before attaching it to the other post.    

Chicken Wire

Chicken wire is also known as poultry netting. This type of fencing is normally composed of mesh or wire strands to contain chickens specifically. 

It is customarily made out of thin and flexible galvanized steel strands of wire with hexagonal spaces.

Chicken wire fences are sometimes used to contain small animals or to protect a specific property such as plants from your pets.

Electric Wire Fencing

Electric wire fences are generally used to protect high-security areas. They are usually made out of thin aluminum or steel. 

Yes, based on its name, it is designed to produce an electric shock to intruders and trespassers. The electrified fences that are used for agricultural uses contain a small amount of voltage, enough only to give a minor spark.

Talking about industrial or commercial purposes, the electric wire fences might contain a higher amount of voltage to knock out the intruder. 

For military or security uses, a lethal amount of electricity might be infused in the wire fences. Meaning, the person who will touch the fence might get severely electrocuted and die afterward. 

Nowadays, electric wire fences are widely used for agricultural advantages. They are installed to restrict animals like sheep, poultry, or horses.

Once they get in contact with the fence, they will experience a mild spark and they will stay away. 

However, electric wire fences are also used for keeping the animals away from airports, restricting parks, confining animals in the zoo, and securing private properties. In terms of installation, professional experience is highly required.

What Is An Invisible Fence?

An invisible fence is not your ordinary fence. Invisible fence systems require expert installation and professional pet training sessions. The main purpose of an invisible fence is to contain your pets, especially your dogs.

Normally, an invisible fence technology uses advanced radio frequencies to function. These digital signals must be enabled so that the system will continue to work. 

It is controlled using its contemporary control panel and it is located usually in discreet places such as the garage.

Along with the control panel is the cable which keeps it connected to the digital radio signal built around your residential property. A field of the signal is generated on all sides of the built cable around your property and it acts as your pets’ protective borderline. 

However, the signal is detected by the computer collar receiver which is worn by your pet. Once the collar receiver of your pet encounters the field of signal, a warning tone to your pet will be generated. 

Then it will provide a soft and safe static correction to remind your pet that it has crossed the limits. But for you to know where the boundaries are, there will be boundary flags that represent the signal field.

Wire Fence Materials

Several materials are used for creating or coating wire fences – here are some of them:


This material is one of the most popular types of wire fences. Aluminum is a lightweight and rust-free material. It can withstand the damages caused by rain and other moisture-related problems. 

A wire that is made out of an aluminum material can be used for making electric fences as aluminum is a great electricity conductor.

A lot of benefits are found in aluminum-based wire fences. Compared to copper, aluminum is more flexible and lighter, making it very easy to work with. It is also a much cheaper option than metal. However, aluminum is not that durable compared to stainless steel.

Stainless Steel Wire

Compared to aluminum, stainless steel wire is much heavier, more durable, and more long-lasting. It is arguably one of the top material choices in terms of wire fencing. 

Although it could be more pricey compared to other wire materials, stainless steel would be an excellent option as it does not corrode over time.

Stainless steel does not have to be galvanized. It is even more robust and long-lasting than GAW wires. This type of wire is very durable. It can withstand all kinds of weather and it can last for a very long time as it does not rust. 

Moreover, stainless steel is highly resistant to fire and heat. It can even maintain its durability during high-level temperatures.

Poly Wire

This material is normally used in the process of creating electric wire fences and where there is required visibility. Poly wire uses vivid-color fiber wirings twisted with wires that can be electrified. 

Just like stainless steel, poly wire is also rust-free and it is a great option for containing necessary livestock such as horses.    

Poly wire can be easily repaired, spliced, adjusted, and tightened. To tighten it efficiently, you can try using a poly wire tightener to preserve the tension of the wire. Furthermore, a poly wire can be used over and over again.                                                         

Coated Wire Fence

There are some efficient materials in terms of coating wire fences and each one of them offers various application procedures. Also, each type of coating has its pros and cons. Here are some of the types of coating to protect the wire fences:

Galvanized Wire

This type of wire is treated or coated with a protective and durable coating like zinc. This zinc coating enables the wire to withstand rusting and perishing.

There are two types of galvanized wire – GBW (Galvanized before Weld or Weave) and GAW (Galvanized after Weld or Weave). Let us first talk about the first type of galvanized wire.

Galvanized before Weld or Weave (GBW): GBW wires are already galvanized before it has been woven or welded. If the wire is welded, the welding process burns away the galvanization process. 

Compared to GAW, this process is less pricey. Meaning, there will be small parts where moisture can enter, resulting in deterioration. And that is the drawback of GBW.  

Galvanized after Weld or Weave (GAW): Compared to GBW, GAW is much more durable and long-lasting as it has been galvanized after the wire has been welded or woven. 

This process might be more expensive than GBW, but it will be worth every penny as it will not need that much maintenance and repair, unlike GBW.

GAW wires have already been woven or welded before they are protected with zinc coating. This ascertains that there will be no parts that are left unprotected and no zinc content would go to waste. 

GAW wires are more recommended for outdoor uses as they can withstand all types of weather better than GBW wires.

Vinyl Coated Wire

This wire fence material is used to coat a welded or weaved wire fence. It uses vinyl coverage to keep the wires protected. 

Coating your wire fences with vinyl can produce desirable results durability, longevity, and appearance-wise. The majority of vinyl-coating wire fences are also galvanized.

A vinyl-protected wire fencing is frequently built all over the yard to restrict your pets. It can also be built around swimming pools and playgrounds to secure the kids. See more pool fence ideas here.

Moreover, vinyl-coated wire fences are used to trap and catch animals such as lobsters or to decorate panel additions for deck rails.

Powder Coated Wire

This type of coating is composed of thick paint in powder form that is mainly used for covering wire fences made out of steel. 

This is also a good choice in terms of keeping your wire fences protected. Powder-coated wires can generally withstand harmful UV rays, corrosion, and moisture.

Normally, powder-coated types of wire fences do not contain volatile organic compounds. Meaning, it is very environmentally friendly. See more garden fence ideas here.

E-coating Wire

E-coating stands for electroplating. This coating process is occasionally applied under a powder coating to make the wire fencing extra durable and resistant to corrosion. 

To successfully achieve the e-coating process, the wire should be dipped in paint and it must also be charged electrically. This method will generate a reaction that will reinforce the coating’s durability.

What Gauge Wire Fencing Is The Strongest?

The diameter or thickness measurement of wire is called gauge. Technically, its measurement is based on how many times the steel wire could be drawn or pulled. Nowadays, several advanced types of equipment are used to accurately get the diameter of the wire.

However, in short, the larger the measurement, the thinner and less durable would be the quality of the wire.

Yes, talking about wire fencing, things might seem opposite. For example, a 24-gauge wire is thinner, smaller, and weaker than an 8-gauge wire. This is why the strongest gauge wire fencing always has a low gauge or low diameter.

The principle of this can be compared to a bass guitar – the lowest-measured strings are the thickest and most durable. Comparably, the lowest wire gauge is the strongest. 

For extra-strong and durable types of wire fences, you must go for gauges 8 to 11.5. The possible thinnest gauge would be 20 and above.

What Is The Cheapest Wire Fence?

Chicken Wire Fence: Among the types of wire fences that we have just discussed, chicken wire is the cheapest selection. It is arguably the most affordable and practical way of keeping away or confining animals. 

Chicken wire fences do not usually have that appealing look and they are normally made out of thin quality. However, it can be easy to form along with wood supports like cedar or oak to make it look more attractive and decent.

The usual cost of chicken wire fencing ranges from $0.10 to $0.30 per linear foot.

Barbed Wire Fence: Barbed wire fences are normally seen in farmlands and yards and they are not meant for improving the outdoor space. 

They are more on improving your security by keeping people, specifically intruders, and animals away from your property. Barbed wire is the second cheapest wire fence available.

Generally, the cost of barbed wire can be around $1.50 to $2 per foot.

Vinyl-coated Wire Fence: This has been one of the most common types of wire fences nowadays because it offers a modern appearance. But when it is not carefully created, it can appear cheaper than metal or wood. 

However, vinyl-coated wire fences are easy to install and are very robust. It does not attract termites and it is normally made out of lightweight materials.

This option is available in plenty of designs and it could be painted using your preferred paint color. The common cost of a vinyl-coated wire fence per foot is around $6 to $9.

What Is Better: Woven Or Welded Wire Fencing?

If you want to install safety boundaries, no doubt welded wire fences are the better option. 

If you want to secure your property and you don’t want intruders to access your residence, welded types of wire fences are the most preferred choice as they could be hard to tear.

Also, people or animals will have a difficult time breaking through the inflexible intersections.

Welded wire fences are also normally built with small openings. Meaning, there would be less possibility for detritus to fly in your area. 

When it comes to security, welded is also a better option as it does not provide a climbable finish. Woven wire fences can be easier to climb with.

The small grids of welded wire fences are very suitable for a confidential data center’s security. It would be hard for thieves to access those data and other secret information as these fences can be hard to pass through.

When it comes to storage purposes, welded wire fencing is also the more ideal option because it is more versatile and durable. If you wish to extend the longevity of the things you are storing and you want to properly secure them, welded wire fencing could be the perfect selection.

Best Fencing Wire Material

Stainless steel is potentially the best material when choosing among the different types of wire fences. It is the strongest and longest-lasting material. This material itself can already withstand corrosion and other dangerous chemicals. It can withstand all types of weather and it does not get rusty over time. 

Furthermore, it does not need to be galvanized or coated with some chemicals to be durable. Stainless steel has two types – 316 and 304. Stainless steel 316 offers a higher resistance in corrosion and it can withstand saltwater applications better than 304. However, 316 is normally more expensive.

Here is the summary list of the unique advantages and beneficial features of stainless steel:

Can last much longer than GAW wire fences 

Contains maximum durability and strength that can last for a lifetime

Can powerfully resist corrosion, harmful chemicals, and rust

Very ideal for places with a high accumulation of moisture

Has an appealing and timeless look

Easy to clean and maintain

Can resist high and low temperatures

Can withstand all types of weather

Easy to cut, weld, fabricate, and shape

What Type Of Wire To Use For Underground Dog Fence 

A stranded wire is one of the recommended types of wire you can use for an underground dog fence. This type of wire is made out of thin copper wires that are woven to become one. 

Compared to a solid core wire, a stranded wire can be less resistant to corrosion and is less durable. But in terms of cost, stranded wires are the more ideal selection.

Another type of wire that can be used for an underground dog fence is solid core wire, as I’ve mentioned before. It is constructed into one copper wire. 

It can be difficult to customize or work with but it has a more robust structure. Its corrosion resistance is also higher than a stranded wire. Talking about the gauge, there would be two gauge wires to select from – 18 and 20. 

Moreover, you must remember that it is never advisable to combine two different wire types. Never change the gauge or type of wire while you are in the middle of making your project as it can cause negative effects.

For more details bout designing a fence check out our picks for the best fence design software. These programs can help you plan your yard layout and estimate the amount of materials you’ll need.

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