How much does it cost to repair metal fence?
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Metal Fence Repair Cost Guide
Updated: January 10, 2023
Metal fences are great for homeowners who want durable and aesthetically pleasing fencing options. Even though these fences are designed to last for decades and withstand harsh elements, they can suffer damage, such as storms and vandalism, that require repair. The cost of repairing your metal fence depends on the fence’s metal type and repair type.
The national average cost to repair a metal fence is between $600 and $1,000, with most homeowners paying $800 to remove rust and paint 50 linear feet of metal fencing, resecuring 4 posts. This project’s low cost is $150 to replace 1 panel on a damaged 6’ tall aluminum fence. The high cost is $7,500 to repair 150 linear feet of damaged decorative railings and posts on a 7’ tall wrought iron fence.
Metal Fence Repair Prices
|Metal Fence Repair Cost
|National average cost
Metal Fence Repair Cost per Foot
Metal fence repair costs have a wide range of costs per linear foot. If you only remove rust and paint, costs range from $7 to $10 a linear foot for most metal fences. For full repairs with welding, fixing posts, or replacing damaged decorative sections, costs can reach $50 per linear foot for some fences. This can also range depending on the fence material. Wrought iron has the highest costs per linear foot to repair, while steel has the lowest, depending on the type. This makes the total cost range to repair a metal fence $7 to $50 a linear foot, depending on the material and problems. You may also have different costs for fixing smaller problems, such as resecuring a post or replacing a damaged panel. Below are the average costs to repair metal fences based on size.
|25 Linear Feet
|$175 - $1,250
|50 Linear Feet
|$350 - $2,500
|100 Linear Feet
|$700 - $5,000
|150 Linear Feet
|$1,150 - $7,500
|200 Linear Feet
|$1,400 - $10,000
|300 Linear Feet
|$2,100 - $15,000
|400 Linear Feet
|$2,800 - $20,000
Metal Fence Repair Cost by Material
Your fence’s metal type affects the repair cost. Different types of metal require varying tools and processes, making some metals more costly to work on than others. The cost to repair a metal fence ranges from $18 to $50 per linear foot, depending on the material. Steel and aluminum fences can be hollow or solid, causing their costs to fluctuate. Wrought iron has the highest costs per linear foot to repair because of the material and how ornamental it can be. Below are the average costs to repair metal fences based on the material.
|Repair Cost Per Linear Foot
|$18 - $25
|$25 - $40
|$30 - $50
Steel Fence Repair
Repairing a steel fence costs $18 to $25 per linear foot. Repairing damage to steel fences often involves welding new sections and repainting. Steel may also rust if untreated, raising costs. Steel fences are extremely durable, particularly when solid rather than tubular, but may suffer damage due to storms or accidents. Steel repairs may include replacing individual rails, resecuring posts, or removing rust. Since steel is extremely durable, the welding process for rail replacement takes time, adding to the cost. Steel panels are typically not replaced unless severely damaged.
Aluminum Fence Repair
Expect to pay between $25 and $40 per linear foot to repair your aluminum fence. When an aluminum panel on a fence is damaged, welding is an option but rarely used. This is because most aluminum fences are tubular, but a solid aluminum fence can be welded if care is taken. Most likely, your repair person will unbolt, remove, and replace damaged panels. Aluminum is more likely to warp or bow with impact, have unsecured posts, or crack than other metal fences. Repair generally involves replacing damaged sections, resulting in slightly higher costs.
Wrought Iron Fence Repair
The most expensive metal fence to repair is wrought iron. Average repair costs run between $30 and $50 per linear foot. Like steel fences, wrought iron fences often require welding to repair. However, wrought iron fences tend to be much more ornamental than steel ones, making the welding process more complicated. Repairing wrought iron fences is the most common choice if only a small section is damaged or you wish to preserve the original fence. Rust is one of the biggest problems these fences face, as is cracking of old iron. If the fence is not old, replacing a damaged section is sometimes more affordable. If the fence is historic, repairs are generally done over the entire fence, with rust removal and repainting to preserve it.
Cost to Repair a Metal Fence by Type of Problem
Repair costs for your metal fence depend on the problem type. Different problems require different repairs, and more than one type of repair may be needed in some cases. While certain problems affect specific materials more than others, some problems are common to most metal materials. Expect to pay between $7 and $10 per linear foot for metal fence repair, depending on the issue. Many problems are repaired by the section. For example, post securing is not charged by the foot but by the post. Widespread issues are typically priced by the foot, including rust and repairs like welding to many areas on the fence. Isolated issues have set costs. Below are the average costs to repair the most common problems with metal fences.
|Shifting / Loose / Wobbling Post
|$80 - $100/unit
|Loose / Missing Railing
|$100 - $200/unit
|$100 - $350/unit
|$120 - $400/unit
|$250 - $1,000/unit
|$7 - $10/linear foot
|Twisting / Warping
|$150 - $400/section
Shifted, Loose, or Wobbly Post
The cost to resecure a post is $80 to $100 per post. Posts are held in the ground by concrete, which generally keeps them stable for many years. However, soil erosion may cause the concrete and posts to shift. The concrete may become damaged, leading to a wobbly or loose post, or a post may rust, causing it to come loose. In most cases, the old concrete must be dug up and replaced, or a new post hole must be dug next to the old one.
Loose or Missing Railings
The cost to repair loose or missing railings averages $100 to $200 per affected rail. Aluminum fences are more likely to lose a railing or have one come loose than steel or wrought iron fences. However, enough impact could cause the loss of a steel or wrought iron railing. Damaged railings can be a safety hazard and should be repaired immediately. Most often, repairing a railing involves removing the railing and welding on or reattaching a new one.
Hole in a Metal Fence
Expect to pay between $100 and $350 to repair a hole in your metal fence. The process involves removing rust and ensuring debris is eliminated. Your professional patches the hole in one of two ways. First, they may add putty to the area, making sure it completely dries before sanding. The other option is to weld a patch. Once completed, the area is repainted.
Broken Metal Fence Post
The cost of repairing or replacing a metal fence post once it has broken is $120 to $400 per post. The posts are vital to your metal fence because they provide stability. While metal fence posts are normally durable, they can become damaged due to rust or being hit with a hard object. The costs for repairing a broken metal fence post include removing the post and replacing it or making the repairs, resetting it in concrete, and attaching the fencing.
The cost to repair a section of leaning fencing is $250 to $1,000 per fence. Fences lean for many reasons. The posts may have become loose, and the fence’s weight pulled a section over. The fence section may have become damaged through impact, and the area where the fence attaches to its posts may be damaged, forcing the panel to lean. Costs to repair may include resecuring posts, welding or reattaching a panel to the posts, or replacing other seriously damaged parts. Most require a combination of these repairs.
Rusted Metal Fence
Removing rust using a sandblasting method, followed by painting, runs between $7 and $10 per linear foot. Aluminum fences do not rust, but steel and wrought iron fences may if untreated. Rust begins as an unsightly issue but can affect the fence's integrity if not corrected. The typical method of repairing a rusted fence is to sandblast it, coat it in primer and material to stop and convert rust, and paint it with oil paint.
Twisted or Warped Metal Fence
The cost to repair a section of twisted or warped metal fencing is $150 to $400 per 6’ section. An impact from a car or tree may not break the fence but leave it damaged due to warping. This is more problematic with aluminum fences than steel because aluminum is much more likely to warp under pressure than steel. You do not need to worry about twisting and warping if you have a wrought iron fence. To fix this issue, the damaged section is removed and replaced.
Metal Fence Repair Cost by Type of Repair
The costs for repairing a metal fence depend on the metal and repair type. In some cases, repairs must be made over large sections, while other repairs focus on specific portions. Certain repairs or special repair areas require longer labor times and more costly materials, increasing the price. Some repairs like rust removal are charged by the linear foot. Others may be charged by the section. Below are the average costs to repair fences by the most common methods.
|Cost of Repairs
|$100 - $200/unit
|$100 - $400/unit
|$5 - $10/linear foot
|$15 - $120/hour
Metal Fence Railing Repair
Repairing railings on a metal fence costs $100 to $200 per railing. Time and use cause railings on any metal fence to become loose or damaged, requiring repair. Depending on the metal and damage type, the railing may be able to be spot repaired with rust removal or patching. It may also need to be replaced, involving cutting it off and welding on a new solid steel or wrought iron railing or disconnecting it from a tubular steel or aluminum fence and screwing on a new one.
Metal Fence Gate Repair
Metal fence gate repair is complicated and costly, costing $100 to $400 per gate. While repairs can include damage to the actual gate, they also can include repairs to the hardware, such as hinges. The cost depends on whether the gate is repairable or needs to be replaced. Costs include removing the gate, transporting the gate to the shop where repairs are made, and rehanging the gate once repairs are completed.
Metal Fence Painting
Expect to pay between $5 and $10 per linear foot to paint a metal fence. Costs vary depending on the metal type and its condition. Wrought iron fence painting costs have the highest range at $10 per foot because they have a range of needs. Steel painting and aluminum painting have narrower cost ranges. Painting a fence prevents rust from getting into iron or steel. It can also hide small cracks or flaws and is usually done after rust removal, welding, or another repair. Some metal fences come with a powder coat that is long-lasting enough not to need painting, but others may need periodic painting after repair or during regular maintenance.
Metal Fence Welding
Welding a metal fence costs $15 to $120 per hour, with most repairs costing $100 to $800, depending on the weld type, materials, and repair size. Hourly costs range depending on the materials and the welder’s expertise. Welding is most often used when you need to reconnect broken pieces or add new pieces or sections. During the welding process, the professional prepares the surface and removes jagged edges before welding the pieces.
Metal Fence Repair Cost by Type of Replacement
Sometimes, the damage to a section of metal fencing is so bad that it cannot be repaired and must be replaced. In other cases, such as very warped or bent aluminum or tubular steel fencing, replacement is the only way to deal with the damage. Several areas of the fence may require replacement, including the railings, gates, posts, or individual panels. Costs can vary tremendously, depending on the size of the area, the material, and how difficult the replacement is. Replacing an entire panel can often be less costly than replacing one part of the railing. Railing replacements have a wide cost range because the length of the railing that needs replacement can be a few feet or run the length of the fence. Gates can also vary in costs depending on how they move and operate, what they are made of, how large they are, and how heavy they are to move and lift. Some fence repairs may also be a combination of replacing one section and repairing another through other methods. Below are the average costs of replacement for various parts of metal fencing.
|$100 - $1,000
|$100 - $6,000
|$120 - $400
|$150 - $400
Labor Cost to Repair a Metal Fence
Labor costs to repair your metal fence depend on what type of repairs need to be made and the extent of the damage. If your repairs require welding, expect to pay between $15 and $120 per hour, depending on the welder’s expertise, material, and complexity. Typically, newer and less experienced welders charge the lowest rates, while those who have been in business for years charge the highest.
If you have an aluminum fence and remove and replace an old panel, the labor costs per hour are between $40 and $50. Most panels require a minimum of one hour. Postwork that requires removing and reinstalling into cement costs $50 to $100 per hour. Removing rust or applying paint are generally charged by the square foot, at $0.30 to $1.25, with painting having lower costs than repairing stubborn or heavy rust areas.
While labor costs are most often related to the type of repairs and materials, a few issues can increase labor costs. Wrought iron fences with more intricate designs can be more complicated to repair and take additional time. Broken fence pieces that require more specialized welding can also increase the cost. Relying on a professional is always best for all repairs. Most of the repairs needed for metal fences require skilled labor, specialized tools, and the proper safety precautions.
Metal Fence Removal Cost
Removing or replacing an older metal fence has a range of costs. Typical fence removal is estimated by the square foot of fencing, or the length times the width of the fence. Costs range from $5 to $20 per square foot for removal, including disposal. The heavier the fence, the higher the cost because it requires more labor to move. Most pay $600 to $1,200 to remove a metal fence. Many metal fences are recyclable, which can cut down on disposal costs. Refurbished old wrought iron fences could be used again, which can also save on disposal costs because there may be no dump fee.
Replacement vs Repair Price
Occasionally, the damage to your fence may be so great that you need to replace it rather than repair it. A few things must be assessed when making this determination. The first is determining how significant the damage is. If more than 20% of your fence has been damaged, you may want to replace it to ensure continued durability. This is known as the 20% rule. At 20% damage, repair costs may approach replacement costs. While small repairs can usually be disguised with good finish work, large and widespread repairs may not always match well with the older fence. The only true exception to this rule is for historic wrought iron fences. Because they are durable and expensive to recreate, repair is generally the best option.
If you need to replace the fence, the total costs are usually higher, but this is because the amount of fencing that most professionals are willing to repair is generally fairly low. Below are the average costs to repair or replace a metal fence.
|Cost per Linear Foot
|$7 - $50
|$15 - $75
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Insurance coverage. Your homeowners insurance may cover the cost to repair your fence in certain situations. This depends on what caused the damage and what is covered in the other structures portion of your insurance policy. Most policies cover repair due to storm damage or vandalism. Damage from yard debris during mowing or dings from wear is likely not covered.
- DIY. While some metal fence repairs can be done DIY, it is best to retain the services of a professional. Most repairs require specialized tools, and welding requires specialized skills.
- Warranty. Many fence installations come with a warranty to cover minor damage and repairs. If you think your fence is still under warranty at the time of the repair, contact the installer.
- Permit. Permits are sometimes required when working on fences of a specific height. If you are unsure, speak to your local municipality for more information.
- Prepare the area. Whenever possible, keep the area around the fence clear for the workers to get in to make the repairs. This can involve cutting back brush or clearing debris. If the professional needs to do this, they may charge you extra.
- Cost-sharing. If your fence separates your yard from your neighbors, sometimes the cost of the repair may be shared because repairing the fence enhances their property.
- How do you fix a rusted metal fence?
To fix a rusted metal fence, you need to sand down and remove all of the old rust, patch any holes, apply a rust inhibitor, and repaint.
- Can rusted wrought iron be repaired?
Rusted wrought iron can be repaired as steel can by brushing or sandblasting the rust, patching, and painting. It can sometimes be less expensive to install new sections if the rust is severe.
- Can you paint over rusted metal?
Never paint over rusted metal because it causes poor adhesion with the paint and leads to flaking. Removing rust and smoothing the surface are vital before painting.
- How long will a wrought iron fence last?
Expect a wrought iron fence to last 60 years with basic maintenance. It can last longer if well-maintained and repaired.
- How much does it cost to restore a wrought iron fence?
Full restoration typically costs $30 to $50 per linear foot for wrought iron fences. This includes rust removal, spot welding, cleaning, painting, and replacing damaged areas or posts.
- How do you fix a corroded metal fence?
In most cases, the first step is to remove the rust. This can be done through wire brushing, sanding, or sandblasting, depending on the fence and material. Once this is done, the area may be patched, coated in a rust-resistant primer, and repainted. Sometimes, a section may need to be replaced if the rust is bad enough.