There are many ways to install a wood fence post. Having manufactured and professionally installed wood fence since the 1960?s, Academy Fence Company offers these suggestions and tips.

For most situations we suggest setting the post without concrete. Most people feel this is the preferred method because the post will last longer because the post is not encased with concrete which forms a pocket for still water to linger at the bottom of the post, thus rotting it out much faster. Although cementing it will give a sure appearance of strength at the initial completion of the job, this strength can be achieved by installing it properly, tamping it, without cement.

There are a few instances when it is better to use concrete, such as if the post is set in area where there is constantly a puddling of still water, caused by poor drainage in a section of the property. Otherwise, it is ok to use a little cement at the top of a gate post to prevent the post from loosening at the ground level when the gate is regularly opened and closed.

I) The procedure to set a 4 x 4 Wood Post: (not using concrete).

Required tools:
- post hole digger
- tamping bar
- shovel
- level

1. mark out and dig the hole approx 12in in diameter and a minimum of 30in deep. make sure the diameter width of the hole is consistent the whole way down, not cone shaped. place the dirt that you extract on the ground near the hole.
2.Place the post centered in the hole, making sure to get it in the exact spot that you want it.
3. Shovel about 3-4 inches of dirt around the bottom of the hole and tamp that dirt around the post you should not have to tamp it very hard since there are only a few inches of dirt to tamp. Level the post. and 3-4 inches more dirt, tamp it, and levels the post. Continue until the hole around the post is filled to the ground level of the post and finish off with grass or dressing to blend in with the ground surface. The post is ready to attach the wood fence section to and proceed to next post.

*Note that if you try to put all the dirt in the post and then tamp it all at once, the post will not become secure and solid.

II) The procedure to set a 4 x 4 Wood Post: (using concrete).

Required tools:
- Post hole digger
- Tamping bar
- shovel
- Level
- Wheel barrel
- Trowel

Required Material:
- Portland cement, and sand and gravel
- (or ‘redi-mix’ bags of premixed cement and sand and gravel)
- water
1.Mark out and dig the hole approx 12in in diameter and a minimum of 30in deep. make sure the diameter width of the hole is consistent the whole way down, not cone shaped. place the dirt that you extract on the ground near the hole.
2.Place the post centered in the hole, making sure to get it in the exact spot that you want it.
3.Thoroughly mix the cement and sand and gravel in the wheel barrel (1:3 ratio) using one part Portland cement and three parts sand and gravel adding water until you achieve a desirable paste like consistency.
4.Place the cement in the hole around post being careful not to splash cement onto the post. Continue until the hole around the post is filled to the ground level of the post.
5.Trowel, smoothly capping off the top of the cement around the post pitching the grade of the cement from making the highest point of the cement at the post, about one half inch above ground level and the lowest point at the edge of the hole about one inch below ground level. This grade will create a pitch that will allow the water to flow off the post, preventing it from puddling around the post and promoting decay as still water does.
6.Finish off with grass or dressing to blend in with the ground surface.
7.Allow 2-3 days to allow the cement to cure.