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Person drilling pickets in picket fence.

Overview

Repairing a picket fence is usually just as simple as replacing some broken pickets. We'll teach you how to remove the old pickets and trim your new pickets to size. You'll also learn how to screw the pickets into place and keep the screw lines level across the fence.

Steps

1Remove the broken pickets from the picket fence

Fence pickets can be held in place on a fence rail with screws or nails. Use your impact driver to remove any screws and a claw hammer to remove nails or hammer them down. Sometimes a picket is stuck in place and calls for a wrecking bar to pry it off.
Person using impact driver to remove nails from picket fence.

2Trim the replacement pickets for the picket fence

Measure the height of your fence to see how long each of your pickets needs to be. Then mark that measurement onto the bottom of your replacement pickets with a pencil and combination square. Now use your circular saw to trim the pickets to size.
Person measuring bit of timber with steel ruler.

3Drill pilot holes for the screws into the pickets

Hold the picket in position on the fence. Then use a pencil and combination square to mark the picket level with the top and bottom screw lines on your fence. Now remove the picket from the fence and drill pilot holes for the screws on the centre of each of these lines. 
Person drilling into bit of timber.

4Install the replacement picket on the picket fence

Hold the picket in place on the fence and use your impact driver to screw it in. If you are replacing a few pickets in a row, consider using a spirit level and timber clamps to keep them straight and evenly spaced. If you want your replacement picket to sit slightly off the base of the fence, keep it steady by chocking it up before you screw it in.
Person drilling pickets in picket fence.

Suggested products

More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.