There seem to be less really open spaces everyday, which means that there are more and more fences. It also means that there are a lot of old, unsightly and ineffective fences out there.
We can say that beauty is not a requirement for fence to do its job, at least until we take a close look at what that job is. By definition, a fence is a security device that protects the persons or items on the inside by keeping undesirable elements from getting in. There are a few modifications to the basic definition, but you get the idea: a fence does not have to be a complicated thing.
When a fence begins to get old and dilapidated, it may have lived beyond its usefulness. Old and rusted fittings can be seen by the elements you are trying to keep out as an invitation to at least probe to see if security really is compromised. A new and strong appearing fence tells the bad guys that even attempting entry is a waste of time, and to move on.
The first step to installing a new fence is usually to get rid of the old one.
This may not be as simple as it sounds. Before breaking out the tools, make sure that the fence is yours to tear down. This should not be a problem if the fence is well within your property lines. If the fence demarcating the property line was there before you took occupancy, it may not be yours to tear down. Take the time to consult with the neighbours first to avoid trouble. Your neighbour will likely benefit from a new fence as much as you will, the consultation will avoid any confusion and future headaches.
The old fence may require more than simply pushing over to be ready for disposal. Another important step before proceeding is to consult with the local utility companies before doing any digging. They will be only too happy to let you know if your project could interfere with their underground lines. Very likely, they will be willing to reroute any problems until the project is complete.
When everything ready to go, it is never too early to begin thinking what to do with the materials from the old fence. There is a great deal of interest in reuse and recycling today. You may be replacing an entire section of fencing while many smaller portions are still serviceable. There are likely material reuse services in your area who can put your old fence in the hands of someone who can put it to good use. Some of these services will pick up your cast off material, saving you another concern. Best of all, your old fence will be kept out of the land fill.