Looking for a snow fence

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  #1  
Old 12-05-16, 03:50 PM
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Looking for a snow fence

Ok, new to this snow fence thing.

I work as a handy man for a multi-unit landlord. Remembering from the past living in a snow belt area (north-east Penn) that "snow fences" help prevent snow from blowing back into areas where it is not wanted that I need a "snow fence".

I would like to get a snow fence that will help prevent snow from "wind blown" pile up near the apartment building's propane tanks and parking lot (which are basically in the same proximity to each other). Every time the parking lot is cleared with a snow blower and wind blows the snow back over the parking spots because this part of the parking lot is a wide open area. Also next to the building are the propane tanks for the individual units and it gets quite difficult for the delivery person of propane to get in there because of the high snow.

I figured out a line from in front of the propane tanks down along the side of the parking lot to put the fence in a semi-circle for what I think will help the snow from piling up. What I don't know is what I am looking for in the way of a type of fence and the posts needed for the fence. I think I want a flexible fence (such as straps) so that the snow will build up on the fence material but yet not weigh it down and collapse the fence on top of itself. Hence using straps that are flexible.

I need about 50 feet of fencing that again is in the shape of a semi-circle. What should I look for in a fencing material and I guess the supports are important also so that it can hold the weight of the snow against the fence.

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks!!!!
 
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Old 12-05-16, 03:56 PM
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6' steel t-posts placed every 8' - 10' and a 50' roll of wood picket snow fence ($63 at home depot) and some baling wire. I don't know that you need anything more than that, unless you don't own a steel post driver.

The snow fence should be located at least 30' away from whatever you don't want drifted in.
 
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Old 12-05-16, 04:48 PM
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6' steel t-posts placed every 8' - 10' and a 50' roll of wood picket snow fence ($63 at home depot) and some baling wire. I don't know that you need anything more than that, unless you don't own a steel post driver.

The snow fence should be located at least 30' away from whatever you don't want drifted in.
Sorry for sounding ignorant but what is a 6 foot steel t-post. Can you please give me a link to one.

A link to a steel t post driver would also help. Almost positive we don't have one of these.

I would have assumed the plastic netting (which is flexible) would have been better than wood picket snow fence (please educated me a bit).

Bailing wire for what please. Honestly don't know what to use the bailing wire for.

I guess if the snow fence should be placed 30 feet from what I want to protect from drifting snow I need more than my anticipated 50 feet.
 
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Old 12-05-16, 05:04 PM
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I'm sure there a number of them in PA, so look up Tractor Supply and then T posts. Your local grain mill should have them too. A driver makes it a whole lot easier to set them, but a sledge hammer works as long as you have a trusting or trusted coworker. A sledge hammer on the wrist does not sound like much fun. The bailing wire is to tie the fence to the posts. The way that snow fence works is that it changes the airflow, and the snow actually dumps on the leeward side of it, not on the windward side, so that's the reason for keeping it back so far. Keep in mind that snow fence is to reduce wind blown snow, so, unless you have some relatively wide open space from the windward side it may just put more snow someplace else, not necessarily where you want it.
 
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Old 12-05-16, 05:21 PM
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Huh. Well, go to home depot's website and use their search feature. Search for:

Snow fence
6' steel t-post
Post driver
#9 galvanized wire (to tie the fence up to the posts). You really are new to this arent you?

Snow is going to drift in behind anything that is an obstruction... propane tank... parked cars... so if they push and pile the snow on all sides of the parking lot, the snow pile will act like a snow fence and it is just going to drift back in behind it. That's how a snow fence works. Wind blows snow through the fence and as the velocity of the wind decreases just beyond the fence, the snow drops to the ground and it creates a big pile of snow... so that it is deepest right behind the fence... and then the long drift behind the fence (following the direction of the wind) tapers down to nothing.

You can use plastic fence and zip ties but whether it is better or not is debatable. Its floppier so you need more posts. More posts = more work and more $. Wooden snow fence can last for many years.

I usually see the plastic fence laying on the ground.
 
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Old 12-06-16, 07:33 AM
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Snow Fence

Snow fences work by causing the snow to drift on the downwind side of the fence. This is why the fence is built a good distance away from the area it is protecting.
 
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Old 12-08-16, 04:35 PM
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Please forgive me/us for the delay in my responses. I have been very busy. My boss is traveling on business and there is a time delay of when he gets back to me.

I/we (my boss) appreciate so much the responses that we have received so far. We are getting an education to say the least. We had no clue it was this involved; but for a good reason-thank you!!

Ok, so I posted pics below this for you to see what we are attempting to protect and the direction of where the wind normally drifts the snow towards. The first pic shows the part of the parking lot where the snow drifts towards (between the two buildings) and piles up in the parking lot. The second pic shows where the wind normally blows from causing a pile up of snow against the propane tanks and the parking lot.

My boss just emailed me asking me if there is a more permanent solution where as to installing a fence to block the snow yet at the same time increase the value of the property with a permanent fence.

Again, we both thank all that have contributed. If you feel you need more pictures to help resolve this issue please let me know and I will take pictures. May take a few days to post them though.

Any help is soooooo very much appreciated!!

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Old 12-08-16, 05:18 PM
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My own opinion is that snow fence isn't going to do much for you. I have seen it work well along roads or long driveways where prevailing winds are somewhat predictable and there is plenty of open space. With the varying elevations and proximity of structures, I think you will find that you have too much whipping or whatever you want to call it when the wind blows. I honestly think that you're stuck with plowing or blowing it, either of which are unavoidable anyway.
 
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Old 12-08-16, 06:23 PM
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Now that we have pics, I would agree that a snow fence at the base of that hill won't help much. If you did put one up, it would need to be closer to the TOP of the hill... way behind the tree and picnic table. A second snow fence halfway down the hill would likely be needed as well.

The permanent fence might be a better idea. Wind is going to want to funnel between the 2 buildings, but if a 6' privacy fence (perhaps L shaped with a gate) could be put up between buildings, maybe 10'-12' back from the parking area, that would help block the snow that blows are along the ground. You would still have some snow blowing from the top of the hill, off the tops of the buildings, etc, but the fence would stop a lot of it.

A temporary snow fence positioned at the top of the hill in addition to the permanent fence might make sense too, so that they work together.
 
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