How to Hide an Ugly Chain Link Fence

How to Hide an Ugly Chain Link Fence

Covering Your Chain Link Fence

A chain-link fence is one of the cheapest kinds of fence that you can install around your property. Usually not the first choice because of aesthetic reasons, they win over a lot of homeowners with how easy they are to install.

To install a chain-link fence, you dig holes on the ground that are filled with concrete around the fence posts. From there, you stretch out chain-link from post to post, wrapping it around your property. The problem is that once installed, they are tough to remove. Even with a tractor, it is a big job because they are deeply buried and encased in concrete.

If you have a chain-link fence, it will be easier and less expensive to cover it up than it would be to remove it. Below are some options for beautifying your industrial-esque fencing.


2) Plastic Privacy Fence Tape Weave

This plastic privacy fence tape is woven through the holes in the chain link fence in order to fill gaps and provide some privacy.

The tape shown below is made by a company called FenPro.

The tape is just under 2-inches wide and it’s sold in a 250-ft long roll. Each roll is estimated to cover 40 square feet of chain link fencing.

Click here to see additional details (and available colors) on Amazon.

According to the book “The Complete Guide to Garden Walls & Fences” privacy tape is usually more time-consuming compared to privacy slats.

5. Wooden Fence Panels

Wooden fence panels are by far the most attractive option when it comes to upgrading your chain-link fence, and these will cover it entirely, and no one will know what once existed there.

Using U-brackets, you screw the wooden fence panels into them, and this is how they are connected to the chain-link fence.

This removes the need to nail up the boards individually, and once you run a horizontal board across them at the top and the bottom, they are very structurally sound. You can choose from various stains and colors, offering more flexibility aesthetically than any other option.

Because they are made from wood, you can apply weather-resistant sealants to them, significantly increasing their durability. The privacy they offer goes far beyond most of the other options you have and will completely change the look of your fence. With wooden fence panels, you aren’t just upgrading chain-link; you’re completely hiding it.

You may have to get a fence permit with wooden fence panels, depending on where you live. You will have to check with your city or your HOA before installing these onto your chain-link fence. They also do not often come with installation hardware kits, but you can easily find the U-brackets at a local hardware store.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you cover a fence cheaply? Adding hanging pots or other planters from your fence can be an inexpensive way of hiding it. This is a particularly useful option if you want to cover a fence in a rented home, or while you wait for slow-growing climbers to get going How do you dress up a chain-link fence Over time, chain link fences tend to rust and fade. One way to improve their appearance is to paint them black or dark green. Painting your fence will make it look less industrial and help it to blend more seamlessly into the surrounding landscape How can I make my metal fence look better Paint It! – It seems so simple, but really, painting your chain link fence a colour instantly makes it look more finished. Black, white, green, or a pop of colour, I think a can of paint does wonders for this type of fence Can I paint my chain link fence black? Most chain link fences start as a silver colour, but fence paint is available in a variety of colours. Green causes the fence to blend in with the landscape, while black serves as a neutral colour that blends with any landscape. … You may not need to apply the primer if the fence just has a few spots of rust.

The galvanized steel post frames and chain links can make your nice outdoor space feel like a prison yard. The chain-link fence deprives you of the enjoyment of your yard.

They are strong and can keep your children and pets safe. However, the eyesore renders them undeserving of the aesthetically pleasing aspect of your yard. Because removing the fence might be costly, this article will assist you in transforming it into a work of art using the least expensive methods available.

A nice fence will give you peace of mind. Jill and Jane now have a peaceful and beautiful backyard thanks to these inexpensive ways to hide a chain link fence.

8) Windscreen Privacy Covers

These windscreens are like tarps that you strap to the fence.

You attach to your existing chain link fence by threading zip ties through the product’s metal grommets.

People like this privacy option because it is a relatively quick and easy process to tie this to your fence.

The green windscreen below is made by a company called Windscreen4less and is available for sale on Amazon.

The image below is the screen intended for a 6-foot tall chain link fence. Other sizes are available.

Another popular privacy screen is the one shown below made by Amgo. It is 5’9″ tall (intended to cover a 6-foot tall fence) and its 50-feet long. It comes with zip ties to attach it to your chain link fence. They claim it has 90% blockage of visibility.

Will this be right for you?

Plant Bushes and Trees in Chain Link Fence

Covering a chain link fence with wood planks is not the only option you have. If privacy and security are what you’re after, then plant bushes and trees in front of your chain link fence. This will help conceal the area and create a more secure feel.

Make sure you pick the tree that is suitable for your growing location. Choose a plant-based on the temperature in your region, plus consider if you need a plant that will survive well in sunlight, dry soil, and keep its color year-round. If you’re going with bushes, trees, or shrubs, they’ll require weekly maintenance and can take a few years to grow to full size. Also, trim the plant evenly along the top and sides and keep the top wider than the base so light filters down to the lower branches.

Reed Screens

Steve Outman / Getty Images

Thin bamboo reeds about the thickness of a drinking straw are woven together into 8- to 16-foot long mats. These rolls are easy to carry and transport back from the home improvement store. Reed screens are usually installed vertically.

  • Pros: Reed screens offer about 85-percent privacy when new. As the screen falls apart, privacy drops as well. Reed screens are very cheap and most home centers carry them on the shelves. If you need to cover up your chain-link fence in a day, reed screens may be the way to go.
  • Cons: Reed screens stay attractive for about a year or two. After that, the reeds change from golden-brown to gray and start to fall out of the wire weaving material. Reed screens are a good quick fix but a poor choice for the long-term.

Chain Link Fence Slats

Fence slats are the ideal barrier material when you need to fence in an area for privacy purposes. The poles make it possible to see through the screen, but they also prevent anyone from seeing what’s on the other side because of their height. These fences allow for long, narrow pieces to be inserted vertically, so why not do your entire fence with these?

Image credit:
Image credit:

Plus, these privacy screens are economical compared to other types that are made specifically for private areas. Fence slats are made of high-density polyethylene or aluminum.  You can also spray paint them with whatever color you like to help match them with the color of your home or complement your home color.

Because of their material, chain link slats can last for a long time. But depending on the weather in your region, you can repaint them once in a while. They’re also easy to replace, so don’t fret if they get damaged.

#2 Grow Plants On The Chain Link Fence

Chain Link fences are perfect for plants because a) they are absolutely perfect for climbing plants and b) they can help deliver nitrogen to your plants. Climbing plants climb by twirling around supports or gripping onto them, and the size and design of a chain link fence is perfect for both. Clematis and climbing roses are perfect for chain link fences. But you will need many many many plants to cover the entire thing (we don’t see this as a problem)! The clematis is especially perfect because it weaves its way in and out of the links, blooms beautifully and then leaves these wonderful little puffy seed pods.

Chain Link Fences Add Nitrogen To The Soil?

Chain Link Fences Add Nitrogen To The Soil?

Lightning fixes the nitrogen in the air making it available to plants as nitrogen oxides. When your plants are hanging on and planted under a metal chain link fence, the chances of attracting lightning are quite high and while you don't want to be around if lightning is anywhere near your metal fence, the plants will love the extra nitrogen. They gobble it up and put on new growth the next day. Gardeners are known to string copper wire around their tomato plants and cabbage patches to harness this benefit for their plants.

Landscaping along a chain link fence

When choosing plants to hide chain link fences, you’ll want to start with some that will grow tall at the back of the border.


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