New Garden Fence Problem

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
I had a small company come out to my house last week to erect 5 new closed board fence panels that run alongside the side of my house (side entrance) as the existing fence had rotted away.

As the side entrance seems to be a wind trap I decided I would pay a little bit extra to have concrete posts and gravel boards.


Two guys came as planned and erected the fence and I gave it a quick once over before they left to make sure everything was to my liking, which at a glance it was.

However when I gave it a proper look I noticed (actually the wife noticed) that the gravel boards were not flush to the ground which meant the earth from next doors garden was visible and will start to come under the gravel boards over time.

Now the gap between the bottom of the gravel boards and the floor is about 4 inches.


Luckily I have not yet paid for the work done so I called the owner of the company and he came out the next day to have a look at it.

He tried to reason why there was a 4 inch gap, although the previous fence had wooden gravel boards that were flush to the ground, but he came up with two solutions to remedy the problem.


Solution 1 was to put a small wooden gravel board where the gap was but I don’t want a wooden board as this will rot over time.

Solution 2 was to put another concrete gravel board the other side of the fence (in the neighbors garden) and bury that down to stop any earth coming through the 4 inch gap.


I told him I would think about it.

Having had time to think about it am I being unreasonable to expect him to make the original gravel boards flush to the ground? This will probably mean he will have to dig up the concrete posts and start again, which will obviously cost him time and money, but it’s not my fault his men made a bodge of the work is it?

Hopefully there may be someone in here who is a landscape gardener so that I can get a professional opinion but all are welcome.

thanks
 

NewfieDrool

Banned
How can he suggest putting any type of structure in your neighbours garden?
What was included in your written quotation?
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
How big (height) are the current gravel boards?

I'd pull up the fences and old gravel board and replace.

or I'd fill the space beneath the exiting gravel board with some concrete. Just use shuttering the neighbours side.
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
How can he suggest putting any type of structure in your neighbours garden?
What was included in your written quotation?
Quote to Supply and Fit 9.2 Meters of close board fencing 1.8 meters finished height using concrete posts, 2 x concrete gravel boards 300 x high required for each bay of fencing to retain different soil levels this will costs £X + Vat
 

NewfieDrool

Banned
Regardless of who did the work the owner is ultimately responsible for the quality of the work undertaken. When you pay for a service it should be as expected and of reasonable quality and with regards to the gap under the gravel boards it's down to the company to rectify the problem.
Suggesting putting any type of structure in your neighbours garden is a no no which I'm surprised he mentioned.
Is there a variance in soil heights along the border?
 

NewfieDrool

Banned
Regardless of who did the work the owner is ultimately responsible for the quality of the work undertaken. When you pay for a service it should be as expected and of reasonable quality and with regards to the gap under the gravel boards it's down to the company to rectify the problem.
Suggesting putting any type of structure in your neighbours garden is a no no which I'm surprised he mentioned.
Is there a slope or various height issues along the border?
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
Regardless of who did the work the owner is ultimately responsible for the quality of the work undertaken. When you pay for a service it should be as expected and of reasonable quality and with regards to the gap under the gravel boards it's down to the company to rectify the problem.
Suggesting putting any type of structure in your neighbours garden is a no no which I'm surprised he mentioned.
Is there a variance in soil heights along the border?
There is a variance at one end as the patio meets the flower beds. I would have thought they would have dub down to make it level.
That said, this would only explain a height difference for one of the gravel boards and not all of them.
Also the previous fence, with wooden gravel boards, was flush to the ground.
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
I had a similar size gap when I did some fencing about a year ago although mine was tapered.

A length of featheredge against your neighbours and just fill with muck. Job done. Simple stuff
 

NewfieDrool

Banned
They need to rectify it, perhaps there's been a mistake on measurements or incorrect size of materials used and it may require lifting the fence panels and replacing the gravel board with one at the correct height.
More often than not it's small details like this that many companies miss.
I'm sure they can rectify it but it's a shame more don't pay attention to the little details that make a job neat and tidy.
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
Very difficult to say without seeing the whole job.

The reason my gap was tapered was because the ground was out of level and I didn't want the gravel boards buried in the ground.

It looked seamless when finished
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
They need to rectify it, perhaps there's been a mistake on measurements or incorrect size of materials used and it may require lifting the fence panels and replacing the gravel board with one at the correct height.
More often than not it's small details like this that many companies miss.
I'm sure they can rectify it but it's a shame more don't pay attention to the little details that make a job neat and tidy.
I think there has definitely been a mistake on the measurements. I'm so glad I haven't already paid for this.
The owner seems like a nice guy and I want to be reasonable but I also want the fence to look neat and tidy and none of his suggestions for rectifying it has been satisfactory as yet.
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
Very difficult to say without seeing the whole job.

The reason my gap was tapered was because the ground was out of level and I didn't want the gravel boards buried in the ground.

It looked seamless when finished
Can you explain what "A length of featheredge against your neighbours and just fill with muck" is?
Is the muck, Cement? Does it look like a continuation of the concrete gravel boards?
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
Featheredge is basically a think piece of wood that a fencing company is likely to have. I would wedge it in on your neighbours side and then fill under the board with probably sharp sand/cement or concrete.

Yes it'll look like a continuation of the gravel board.

Speaking of which- I wonder if the gravel board can just be dropped lower?
 

jenam93

Well-known Member
Featheredge is basically a think piece of wood that a fencing company is likely to have. I would wedge it in on your neighbours side and then fill under the board with probably sharp sand/cement or concrete.

Yes it'll look like a continuation of the gravel board.

Speaking of which- I wonder if the gravel board can just be dropped lower?
If they drop the gravel board lower, surely the top of the fence will be below the top of the fence post, so also a bodge finish.

Seems like they needed to have dug the fence posts in lower in the first place (or added another gravel board) so the concrete gravel boards sat nicely on your soil with the neighbours soil then resting against it and the fence above that.

What are your plans for along the fence? If you are going to have a flower border with some kind of retainer it kind of makes it moot, but if you are going to have a flat surface it needs sorting out for sure.
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
Yes it's not ideal. I usually have my posts marginally higher than the panels personally but only a fraction.

Yes, weird why they left the gap, especially if the gravel board is resting on soil or should be at least
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
If they drop the gravel board lower, surely the top of the fence will be below the top of the fence post, so also a bodge finish.

Seems like they needed to have dug the fence posts in lower in the first place (or added another gravel board) so the concrete gravel boards sat nicely on your soil with the neighbours soil then resting against it and the fence above that.

What are your plans for along the fence? If you are going to have a flower border with some kind of retainer it kind of makes it moot, but if you are going to have a flat surface it needs sorting out for sure.
This ^
Which means the solution is likely to be to dig up the posts and start again.
I better that call
 

jenam93

Well-known Member
Or they can dig out more soil, add in an extra gravel board, then put the soil back. Though they should have concreted in the fence posts themselves so they might have to kango away some set concrete around the posts for the board to sit in (Which is better than hacking away the gravel board so it sits on the concrete surrounding the fence posts)
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
If you get on with your neighbours then you could always leave it, it'll be good for hedgehogs and other wildlife.
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
If you get on with your neighbours then you could always leave it, it'll be good for hedgehogs and other wildlife.
I'd have to sweep the patio daily due to the amount of earth and gravel coming under the gravel boards, which sort of defeats the object of having gravel boards.

I'm gonna ring him today and tell him his solution of putting a gravel board on my neighbors side of the fence is not acceptable and see what he says.
 

Cocksure

Well-known Member
Wow that is really bad. I would be well hacked off with that finish and certainly wouldn't put a piece of wood in as a filler that would just rot in time, especially as it destroys the whole point of the concrete floor panel/strip/fence (not sure on term :))

They really need to remove the sections between the posts (which will just slide in and out) dig down lower so as they can fit an extra section (might need to trim it) and put the original pieces back on top so as it finishes at original height.

Not difficult with concrete byposts, but not a fun job either

Edit
You could dig it out and fill it with concrete, but then work wise I doubt there is much in it either way
 

RicksonGracie1972

Distinguished Member
Wow that is really bad. I would be well hacked off with that finish and certainly wouldn't put a piece of wood in as a filler that would just rot in time, especially as it destroys the whole point of the concrete floor panel/strip/fence (not sure on term :))

They really need to remove the sections between the posts (which will just slide in and out) dig down lower so as they can fit an extra section (might need to trim it) and put the original pieces back on top so as it finishes at original height.

Not difficult with concrete byposts, but not a fun job either

Edit
You could dig it out and fill it with concrete, but then work wise I doubt there is much in it either way
Digging down lower might be a problem as the gravel boards should sit flush against the patio. In my mind the only option is for them to dig up the posts and then dig the post holes lower which then moves everything else down.
 

Wahreo

Distinguished Member
The gravel boards will only sit on the patio direct if the patio is perfectly level.

If the patio isn't Level and the gravel board goes on this then the whole fence will be out.

Usually the gravel board gets lost under the ground.

I suppose they could angle cut the gravel board.
 

Cocksure

Well-known Member
^ certainly an option :)
They could also trim the paving slabs so as they fit flush to the edge of the fence if they did dig down lower.

Really can't get over how bad a finish it is. Not only are you going to get soil creep, but you will also have weeds spring up in no time

I suppose you could also fit bricks in the space to fill it in, but whatever option you go for it needs to be maintenance free and will last for years, or you might as well have just saved money and fitted an all wood fence
 

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