How Electric Fence Works

An electric fence is an excellent choice to keep animals in place and to scare off trespassers. Because electric fences use a shock-on-impact mechanism, it’s critical to have only skilled specialists install or repair your fence when you need fencing services. There is a wide range of possibilities for customizing your electric fence, based upon the distance you need to enclose and the purpose you intend to use it for, like for your farm fence. You can discuss your property characteristics with a professional electric fence installer like Fast Fence and get the finest advice on materials, distance, and power levels required for use. Here is some predominantly information about electric fences that you might find useful.

The usefulness of an electric fencing

An electric fence can be successful in deterring intruders by delivering a painful but non-lethal jolt. The intruder’s impacts will be determined by many parameters, including volts, amps, and wiring. The highest voltage that can lawfully travel through is 10,000 volts.

Compared to traditional barrier fences like barbed wire and woven wire, electric fencing is a safer option. It is less hazardous to animals than many other fence kinds, which regularly cut and scrape them, resulting in costly vet bills and output losses. An electric fence costs half as much as a traditional fence and takes half the time to install and maintain.

While understanding the mechanics behind electric fencing is crucial for those considering it as a security or livestock management solution, it’s equally important to explore all available fencing options to find the best fit for your specific requirements.

Whether you’re looking for the robust security of an electric fence or the aesthetic appeal and functionality of wood fencing, our website offers a comprehensive overview of solutions tailored to diverse needs. Discover the perfect fencing option for your property by exploring the range of services we provide.


The maintenance needs of electric fencing are similar to those of conventional fences once your fence is correctly installed and your livestock has been taught. A daily check of the voltage, combined with a frequent assessment of plants near the fence lines, will reveal any issues.

What voltage is needed?

The voltage needed ranges from 2,000 to 10,000 volts, with 10,000 being the highest allowed by international laws. The voltage that will be utilized will be determined by the maximum distance that the fence may be shocked at while ensuring the required shock power.

How unsafe is an electric fence?

The current being supplied through wires is very small, that is why an electric fence is not harmful. The amps are what kill, and you’ll normally find the fence set to a low setting of around 120 milliamps. This is the reason why electric fencing can use a larger voltage. Ponder on this: a 220-volt shock would be just as painful as a 10,000-volt shock if the amps or currents were the same. When erecting an electric fence, it’s critical to keep your amps low.

Will an electric fence utilize a large amount of power?

An electric fence will typically result in a minimal rise in electricity expenses of roughly R15-R20 per month. Overall, the rise in monthly bills is not significant, yet it is still reasonable. The amount of electricity that passes via the circuit is measured in amps (note, electricity does not flow unless a circuit is completed).

When anything receives a shock, it is amperage, not voltage, that causes the most numbing pain. When more power is transmitted than they are designed to handle, high amperage melts wires in houses and barns. Circuit breakers and fuses are used in electrical systems to prevent an excessive amount of energy from flowing through the circuit.

Do I need many ground rods?

For most electric fences, two or three grounding rods spaced 10 feet apart near the fence’s beginning point are commonly applied. If not enough ground is used, only a portion of the pulse and not the entire power is returned to the energizer. Keep in mind that these ground rounds should be kept away from telephone wires and other utilities that could interfere.

What is the lasting period of an electric fence?

With nonpermanent braided rope or electric rope, your electric fence could endure up to ten years. An exceptional or good choice conductor or stainless steel electric ropes can also help it last longer.

Is it required that the fence be a full loop?

An electric fence doesn’t necessarily need to produce a perfect loop. Always remember that every scenario has pros and cons. With a continuous loop, for example, the voltage on the fence line will be higher because power is pushed in both ways rather than just one, as with an open loop.

Can rain affect the electric fence?

The rain will affect your electric fence, it may lose some voltage, especially if the insulators aren’t working properly. When insulators come into contact with weeds and brush, or a non-conductive wood fence post, for example, they will fail. It is important to cut the brush. If you have a tiny fence charger, another suggestion is to upgrade to a larger one.

Is there a chance for an electric fence to start a fire

In the presence of plentiful dry vegetation, the only plausible but still extremely unusual scenario in which an electric fence could cause a fire is when a wire shorts to an earthed metal object, such as a steel post or wire with damaged insulators. This scenario is extremely unlikely to happen in practice, much less on a well-kept fence.

When there are significant fire threats or Total Fire Bans, an electric fence will normally be turned off. This is because when there is dry vegetation nearby, sparks can move from one wire to the next, perhaps causing a fire to ignite.

If you need help or queries, get in touch with a local fencing company

If you want to install an electric fence on your property, trust your local fencing business to get you set up and maintained following local requirements. When you speak with a licensed and experienced expert with experience to back them up, you’ll be able to confirm that you have the right wiring, post, voltage, and amps. The operation of electricity with fencing must be done correctly for the shock to be modest and not damaging to the subject attempting to pass through. If possible, an electric fence will be able to keep intruders out and animals in. To learn more, contact Fence Fast.

About the Author

Axle Boris the founder and President of FenceFast Ltd grew up on a cattle ranch in British Columbia’s Northern Interior. After having spent several summers working for his father custom fencing as a youth years later in 1998 he started AB Custom Fencing in the BC interior.

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Brenda Coles
I'm an elementary school teacher who became a stay-at-home mother when my first child was born. I love to write about lifestyle, education, and news-related topics.