The Benefits of An Electric Fence
An electric fence helps you control animals on your property by allowing a safe amount of electric shock to be administered when animals come into contact with your fence. While an electrical fence DIY project might sound daunting, it is actually easier than you might imagine to install and electric fence on your property, including posts, wiring, and your electric fence charger. While other barrier fences can injure and scrape animals and livestock, an electric fence helps train animals to respect the limits of your property, as well as keep unwanted visitors at bay. We’ll walk you through the basics of what you’ll need to create a safe, effective electric fence with a charger that keeps your system running.
What You Need to Get Started
Installing your electric fence charger shouldn’t be a headache. Starting with the right supplies will be the biggest hurdle you face in installing your charger—the actual procedure is quite straightforward. As far as the tools and equipment required, you’ll definitely need a screwdriver, as well as a charger, and you may need gauge wire, fencing pliers, a clamp, a wrench, a post pounder, needle nose pliers, and a grounding rod. Gloves should also be worn throughout the procedure for an extra layer of protection. Depending on the type of charger you plan on using, you may need some additional supplies that will be determined by how you mount your fence charger. As far as supplies go, we recommend shopping at an electrical supply site where you can stock up on your necessities in one go, rather than running from store to store to make sure you have everything you need for your project.
Grounding Your Fence System
To get started, we’re assuming that you already have a fence in place and that you’ve selected a post to mount your charger on. It is crucial that you have a grounding rod system installed as a part of your fencing system. These grounding rods should be at least six feet long, and optimal grounding rod placement for proper safety protocol requires that the rod be within twenty feet of your fence controller. Your charger must be grounded, which will reduce the hazard of electrical shock if your fence malfunctions by providing a low-resistance path for the electrical current. If you are installing an electric fence in an area where there is asphalt, extremely dry, or extremely cold/frozen ground, you may need to take extra steps to insure that your system can be properly grounded.
Installing your Electric Fence Charger
It is key that you use a non-corrosive, metal electrical wiring made from steel or aluminum wire, with an appropriate gauge for your fencing project. Wiring is available specifically for electric fences and is designed to accommodate the proper voltage for your fence—the voltage of typical electrical wiring will be too low for this kind of a heavy-duty project. Your electric fence charger should have color-coded fence and ground terminals to help you determine one from the other. Attach a ground rod clamp and connect it with the ground rod wire. Connect the lead out wire of your electric fence charger to the fence terminal. This will allow your system to maintain a charge that is powerful enough to be effective, while the grounding system will ensure that it is safe and represents a minimal hazard.
Protecting your Electric Fence System
Eventually, it may be a good idea to have a bucket or some kind of covering for your post-mounted fence charger, in order to protect it from the elements. It is also possible to create your own wooden enclosure for your charger. To be on the safe side, cut a vent into your bucket or enclosure, in the case of extreme temperatures. Chargers are designed to withstand typical outdoor weather conditions but by protecting it, you’ll be able to increase it’s lifespan. Additional supplies, such as a volt meter, will help you measure the charge of your fence and make sure that your electric fence charger is doing its job.