How to Build a Horizontal Louvered Fence

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Louvered fences provide privacy without blocking out the sun.
Louvered fences provide privacy without blocking out the sun. (Image: Chris Clinton/Lifesize/Getty Images)

Privacy fences are expensive to have placed around your yard or pool area. It would be cheaper to create your own fence with weather-treated wood than to hire a business to first get an estimate, then spend hours in your yard. A horizontal louvered fence is an elegant choice for creating a sturdy fence that allows in breezes and sunlight but provides privacy from passers-by. With a few tools and some concrete, an attractive louvered fence can easily be yours.

Things You'll Need

  • Marking flags
  • Light-weight rope
  • Tape measure
  • 8-foot long, 4-by-4 redwood posts
  • 48-inch long, 1-by-6 redwood boards
  • Posthole digger
  • Gravel
  • Tamper
  • Wood chalk
  • Compass
  • 8-d galvanized nails
  • Hammer
  • Wood putty

Place a marking flag at each corner of the area you want fenced in. Connect the flags with a light-weight rope by tying the rope to each flag in a consecutive line.

Measure the rope lengths on each side of the designated fence area, using a tape measure. Divide each length by 52 inches. The number found is the number of fence posts needed for each length of fence. For example, if one edge of your yard is 12 feet or 144 inches, then 144 divided by 52 is 2.8 rounded to 3.

Purchase the needed number of redwood four-by-fours and one-by-sixes.

Dig a 10-inch wide, 3-foot deep hole every 52 inches along the rope line. Place the first hole at the beginning of the fence.

Insert an 8-foot long, four-by-four into the center of each hole. Fill the hole with gravel. Compact the gravel every 6 inches with a tamper.

Draw a horizontal line on each post at 2.5 inches from the top and 2.5 inches from the bottom. Between these two lines is 55 inches.

Draw 11 diagonal lines, the bottom of the diagonal facing your yard, down the two sides of each post that faces another post. Each diagonal line will be 6 inches long at a 50-degree angle. To help create the diagonals and keep them even, draw a level horizontal line from the bottom of one diagonal to the top of the next diagonal.

Attach a 48-inch long, one-by-six to each diagonal line, beginning with the bottom line. Hammer the 8-d galvanized nails at a 45-degree downward angle from the top of the board into the post. The redwood board will touch the next post at the corresponding diagonal line. Nail it into the next post using the same downward angle.

Continue to place angled louvers connecting diagonal lines. Finish the louvered fence by covering the nails with wood putty.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check the fence posts' alignment after placing each post into the ground to guarantee each post faces the next properly.
  • Have an assistant to help with heavy lifting of four-by-fours to prevent back injury.

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