Cedar vs Redwood Fence

Image of wood fence but which is better, cedar vs redwood fence?

Having your home fenced is excellent for security as well as privacy. Not everyone has to know whatever that goes on in your homestead. Therefore, if you are going to have a wood fence around your home, you have to use the best wooden materials for long service life. So which one is the best fencing wood? Cedar vs Redwood fence?

Both cedar and Redwood are strong and durable. However, Redwood is denser compared to cedar and is better at withstanding weather and for an extended duration. Cedar fences call for high levels of maintenance. Cedar develops a silver patina with time; you can reduce this through constant staining and painting.

So, at this point, you can decide which one to use between the two wood types; if you don’t mind constant maintenance practices, you can go for cedar. If you have no time to always watch over your fence, then Redwood is the viable choice.

Does Redwood Last Longer than Cedar?

Yes, Redwood lasts longer than cedar because it is a harder wood. What makes Redwood stronger and durable is the fact that it contains more naturally occurring chemicals than cedar. These chemicals protect the wood so that you only need to do less maintenance over time. Unlike the Redwood, Cedar is more readily available domestically and internationally and has a faster growth rate than Redwood.

How Many Years Does a Cedar Fence Last?

A non pressure treated cedar fence can last between 15 and 30 years. This duration depends on how well you treat and maintain it as well as the specific species of cedar that you used. A pressure treated cedar fence can serve you for up to 40 years. Cedar outlasts other wood species, such as a spruce fence that usually lasts about four to seven years.

How Many Years Does a Redwood Fence Last?

A well-maintained Redwood can last up to about 30 years. This wood type is very durable and the most fire-resistant wood material that you can buy today.

Cedar vs Redwood fence, Which One is Expensive?

Generally, a redwood fence costs a lot compared to cedar, which is because the Redwood is not readily available like cedar. As for cedar, the white cedar is the most expensive of all the three types of cedar. Red cedar is the most affordable.

How to Maintain Cedar Fence

Cedar is a reliable wood type when it comes to durability. It can stand wear and tear due to different environmental elements such as the UV light as well moisture. A cedar fence is a beautiful thing, and to have it serve you for an extended period, you need to carry out maintenance practices. In most cases, cedar is easy to maintain wood type.

Here’s how to care for your cedar wood type from installation to after treatment:

  • While installing the posts, ensure that you set them directly into the ground. You should, by all cost, avoid having the posts set into concrete. Have the boards of the fence installed at least two inches from the ground so that the wood does not rot.
  • Ensure that you seal the cedar fence using a waterproofing cedar stain so that it is protected from splintering, cracking, and warping. Apply two layers of waterproofing sealer using a paintbrush. Allow the sealer time to dry in between coats. Remember to seal your cedar fence every 3-5 five years.
  • Don’t allow too much water to hit the fence. I understand that you cannot prevent rainwater from coming into contact with your fence. However, you can avoid having things like sprinklers closer to your fence, even after applying a sealer.
  • Clear all the bushes and vines that grow up your fence. Cut down all the weeds that may start to grow over the surface of the fence.
  • Ensure that you clean your cedar fence at least once every year, When cleaning, Combine 3 qt. Warm water, 1 qt. Oxygen bleach and 0.5 cup non-ammonia dish soap into a sprayer. Spray to saturate the fence with this cleaning solution. Allow the solution to settle on the fence for about 10 minutes. If there’s any tough stain on the surface, scrub it using a scrub brush. Rinse the fence using plain water.
  • Remove all the mold stains from the surface. Molds and mildew, if left untreated, eats the wood away.
Watch the video below on staining cedar fence:

How to Maintain Redwood

Redwood is the best wood to use for a fence if you are looking for something that will serve you for decades. Even so, it is expensive but worth every penny in the end.

Much as this wood type is durable, it is vulnerable to rot if you leave it unattended to and with the impacts of environmental elements. 

Here are 5 ways that you can use to protect your redwood fence

  • The first step to maintaining your redwood fence is by cleaning it. Remove any debris that may be trapped between the boards. Use a metal putty knife to remove the debris and avoid using anything sharp like a kitchen knife as it can knock your fencing boards. Afterward, use a brush to clean the leftovers of the debris.
  • Assess the surfaces of your Redwood fences to see if there are any structural damages. Check loose nails, if there are any hammer them back and reinforce loose boards using galvanized coated screws. Coated screws do not rot even if it rains; hence they offer more durable bonds than nails.
  • Scrub and clean your fence; this step will help remove grease, dirt, stains, and mildew from the surface. You can use a stiff fiber brush plus wood cleaner in scrubbing your wood fence. Other cleaning methods that you can use include using the mixture of TSP and water, household laundry detergents, etc. Remember to scrub in the direction of the grain. After you scrub, let your structure dry for some days before going to the next step.
  • Follow the above step by applying a protective seal. I’d recommend that you use a top-quality sealer or stain such as Ready Seal 520 Exterior Stain and Sealer for Wood, RedwoodThis particular stain is semi transparent and will enhance the natural beauty of your wooden fence. It’s durable and comes with protection against water and UV light. Therefore, if you use it, you will be keeping you fence say for a foreseeable future.
  • Keep your Redwood fence safe from and clear from water sprinklers, bushes that keep the area around fence moist, etc.

Note: It’s is an excellent practice to stain/seal your Redwood fence after at least 3 years of the previous staining. In the meantime, you need to keep it clean.


Both Cedar and Redwood are durable fencing materials. Naturally, Redwood lasts longer than cedar due to many factors, such as the presence of natural chemicals that gives it high resistance to damaging elements. A pressure treated cedar, for example, would last in your fence for up to 3 decades. So, where do these leave us?

Cedar vs Redwood Fence

Well, Redwood edges cedar; however, they are rare, unlike cedar, which makes them expensive. If you cannot afford Redwood fence, the go for a cedar fence, with proper maintenance practice, cedar can serve you for as long as a Redwood can, though with constant maintenance.

I hope you found this article helpful if so, share your opinion with me on the comment section below. Thanks! 

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Tyron Otieno

Tyron is an avid woodworker and writer. He founded this website to help other woodworkers, whether hobbyists or professionals by sharing his knowledge and experiencie after a decade of woodworking.

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