Residential fence posts become loose for a variety of reasons. In some cases the post is not far enough into the ground and becomes loose endangering the entire fence. Always plant a fence post at least 30 inches into the ground or even 36 inches so that the base is well below the frost line in cold climates. Older fences in a high moisture environment such as lawn or shrub areas that get a lot of water will tend to rot just below the ground level. If you not monitoring the situation, the post will break at ground level. Your entire fence can fall over.
Some posts are in sandy conditions and if the sand is eroded from around the post, there may not be enough support to the post to keep it solidly in the ground. Regardless of the situation, many homeowners wonder what can be done aside from replacing the entire fence at some significant cost. There are several solutions ad some are quite inexpensive if you do it yourself.
Repair Loose Fence Posts
The best way by far is to replace the post and make sure that it is deep enough in the ground to properly hold the fence in all kinds of conditions especially in windy situations. A post can rot at ground line, while the rest of the post and fence is in perfect condition. If replacing the post is not an option, another is to drive a four inch square stake into the ground as shown in the picture and then bolt the old fence post to the new steak. Consumers would usually do this on the inside of the fence so that the exterior looks unchanged.
Dig down about a foot on the inside of the post , making a hole that is slightly larger than the steak. Drive the steak down at least 30 inches so that is well planted and solid. Fill the hole to ground level around the steak so that is also properly supported at that level. Finish by bolting the steak to the old fence post.
Another product is a steel post that can be driven into the ground along side the old post. A wooden post is then bolted to the steel stake and then also bolted to the old fence post. This works equally well and sometimes is much easier to drive into the soil, especially if you are dealing with hard clay conditions.
This approach to repair loose fence posts is much less expensive than replacing the entire fence and will give you many more years of use from your fence.