Chain Link vs Wood Fence: Which Is The Right Option For You?

We’ve outlined the major differences between the two fence styles to help you decide.

Securing your property with a fence is a great way to gain additional privacy, security, add value to your home, and give your children and pets a safe area to play outside.

If you’ve decided to take this step, one of the first decisions you need to make is what type of fence you want. Chain link and wood fences are popular options that both offer a range of advantages and disadvantages.

To help you make a more informed decision, let’s take a look at chain link vs. wood fences, the pros and cons offered by each, and what factors you should consider before making a final choice.

Chain Link vs. Wood Fences: Factors to Consider

When it comes to chain link vs. wood fences, there are several important factors to consider, including costs, installation options, durability, lifespan, and more.

Cost Comparison

The cost for a wood fence depends on factors such as style, type of wood, height, etc. Typically, you can expect the materials to cost between $8 to $20 per linear foot. Keep in mind, though, that this doesn’t factor in labor costs, which may range from $20 to $50 per hour.

Chain link fences are generally slightly cheaper, typically costing between $5 to $15 per linear foot. Again, this does not include labor costs, which vary from contractor to contractor.


Some homeowners may choose to install their chain link or wood fence on their own. However, keep in mind that installing a fence takes a considerable amount of labor. From digging holes for fence posts to cementing fence posts in, installing either type of fence takes a significant amount of time and may require specialized equipment. For the average person, it's probably better to find a fence company in your area.

Chain link fences are typically easier to install, as once the fence posts are installed, the chain link portion of the fence can simply be unrolled. Meanwhile, wood fences require each fence post to be installed individually.


Another important factor to consider when choosing between chain link vs. wood genes is privacy.

Wood fences can provide sufficient privacy and can be customized more easily to fit your needs. This makes themes ideal for securing areas dedicated to recreation and relaxation.

Chain link fences, on the other hand, do not provide as much privacy as they are nearly completely see-through due to the design. As such, you might consider opting for a wood fence if privacy is an important factor.

Durability & Lifespan

One of the major benefits of chain link fences is that they require minimal maintenance to stay in good shape. The metal and other materials used in chain link fences are very durable and resistant to a variety of weather conditions. As a result, chain link fences may last 20+ years before needing to be replaced.

Wood fences, however, require ongoing maintenance. This includes repainting or staining the wood, sanding, replacing rotted or termite-infested posts, and more. Depending on the extent of the damage, these repairs can be costly. If properly maintained, wood fences typically last around 15 years before needing to be replaced.

Chain Link vs. Wood Fences: Pros & Cons

To summarize, let’s take a quick look at the pros and cons of chain link vs. wood fences.

Wood Fence


  • Offers better privacy
  • Available in a variety of styles
  • Can be easily customized with paint or stains
  • Sustainable


  • More expensive than chain link on average
  • Requires consistent maintenance
  • Difficult installation
  • Susceptible to water damage
  • Not as durable as chain link

Chain Link Fence


  • Cost-effective
  • Allows more light through
  • Easy installation
  • Requires little maintenance
  • Weather resistance
  • Sustainable


  • Doesn’t offer as much privacy as wood fences
  • Limited styles
  • Not customizable
  • Professional Fence Installation

When it comes down to chain link vs. wood fences, factors such as cost, durability, and installation may be the difference-maker. By reviewing these factors, homeowners can make a more informed decision when securing their property.

No matter which option you choose, it’s important to install your fence correctly to ensure it secures your property effectively and lasts for a long time.

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