Board on Board Fences: The Fence Type for Ultimate Privacy

by  Lauren Lockett-Summers
Published: Nov 28, 2023
Board on Board Fences: The Fence Type for Ultimate Privacy

If you’re looking for new fencing, there are a lot of things to consider. 

Aside from adding curb appeal and security to your home, some fence types offer privacy to ensure that passersby can’t see what’s going on in your backyard while you’re spending time with family.

When it comes to privacy, a board on board privacy fence, also known as board and batten fence, is the best option on the market. 

Unlike the shadowbox fence, which has small gaps that someone could see through, a board on board fence overlap has zero gaps for total and complete privacy.

Table of contents

What is board on board fencing?

A board on board fencing, also called board and batten fence, is a type of privacy fence that’s constructed with an overlapping pattern of vertical pickets. 

This conceals the gaps left between the boards because of shrinking, ensuring that no one can peek between them.

Typically, the first layer of pickets on a board on board fence or board and batten fence consists of six-foot-wide boards that are installed with a 1½ gap, while the second layer consists of four-inch-wide boards installed to overlap the first layer and cover those gaps.

Board on board fences have decorative appeal and are popular with homeowners who have pools and hot tubs, since the design conceals any gaps and prevents people from seeing into the yard.

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Board on board fence styles

There are several options for fence board on board designs to suit your goals, home design, and budget. Most board on board fence styles are available in six- to eight-foot heights to suit your needs.

Board on board wood fence

Wood is a popular option for board on board fences. 

Though they can come in a range of different wood types, including cypress and pressure-treated pine, eastern white cedar, western red cedar, and redwood are often used in Austin and Central Texas. 

These wood types have a beautiful natural color, a durable design, and wide availability.

Horizontal board on board fence

Horizontal wood board on board fence in an Austin property
©Austex Fence and Deck

Modern board on board fence styles are often horizontal, which places the pickets horizontally along the posts. 

Wood fences with horizontal boards have been gaining in popularity for their sleek, updated look. It’s important to use high-quality wood, however, as the boards may sag otherwise.

Board on board fence with top cap

Board on board cedar wood fence with top cap on a backyard surrounded by trees
©Austex Fence and Deck

Nearly all board on board fences have a top cap and trim on top of the fence. The top cap is a horizontal board laid flat on the top edge of the fence. 

This keeps moisture from reaching the exposed ends of the pickets. The ends of the picket absorb water more easily than the surface.

The side trims of the fence are attached to the vertical surface under the top cap. Side trims can be on one side or both sides of the fence.

Dog ear board on board fence

Dog ear fences are popular for many different types of fences, including board on board.

 Named for the look of a dog’s ear or a page edge folded over, these fences have top edges that are shaved off for a pointed look.

Board on board fence with lattice top

A board on board fence with a lattice top offers a more elegant look. 

The fence has overlapping vertical boards on both sides of the fence, ensuring total privacy and a touch of sophistication with a decorative lattice pattern.

Board on board fence with kickboard

If you want practicality and durability, a board on board fence with a kickboard helps your fence withstand additional pressure. 

This design has a sturdy kickboard at the base of the fence for extra reinforcement and support to prevent damage from the elements.

Board on board vinyl fence

Vinyl board on board fence
©Austex Fence and Deck

The board on board vinyl fence offers a timeless appearance of a traditional wood fence with the clean, crisp appearance of vinyl. 

Constructed from high-quality vinyl, this fence style requires very little maintenance and won’t rot, warp, or succumb to insect damage like wood. They’re also available in multiple colors.

Scalloped board on board fence

The scalloped board on board fence has a distinctive look that’s both attractive and practical. 

The top of the fence features a gentle scalloped or curved pattern that’s more elegant than a straight edge.

Board on board picket fence

Board on board picket fence
©Austex Fence and Deck

The board on board picket fence combines the classic picket fence design with added strength. 

Instead of having individual pickets with gaps between them, the pickets are mounted on overlapping boards for more privacy without compromising the timeless appeal of a picket fence.

Board on board fence with picture frame

Board on board wood fence made out of cedar with picture frame, surrounding a pool on a backyard
©Austex Fence and Deck

Picture frame board on board fences are stylish and have a charming touch with decorative square cuts in the top that resemble picture frames.

The overall look has a visually appealing border that brings the whole design together for upscale properties.

Board on board good neighbor fence

A “good neighbor fence” is a fence that’s designed to look the same from both sides, offering visual appeal for your yard and your neighboring properties. 

The vertical boards are alternated on each side of the fence – without compromising privacy – to ensure both sides have a consistent appearance. 

This is important if your fence line is shared with a neighbor.

Board on board fence pros and cons

Board on board fences have unique pros and cons that determine whether they’re a good choice for your home.

Pros:

  • Privacy: Board on board fences are designed with overlapping boards for complete privacy.
  • Aesthetics: The overlapping design offers a visually appealing, three-dimensional look that blends with many architectural styles.
  • Wind resistance: Because the boards are close together but allow some air to pass through, board on board fences offer superior wind resistance during storms.
  • Durability: Board on board fences are extremely durable and can last for many years with proper care.
  • Good neighbor etiquette: Board on board fences look the same on both sides, making them appealing for your property and your neighbor’s.

Cons:

  • Cost: Board on board fences are often more expensive than other fence styles because of the materials.
  • Labor-intensive: Building a board on board fence requires precise measurements and careful alignment of the boards, which is time consuming.
  • Maintenance: Board on board fences require regular maintenance, including staining and painting to protect the wood from insects, weather damage, rot, and more. Vinyl fencing can eliminate a lot of this upkeep.

How much does a board on board fence cost?

The cost of a board on board fence can vary according to the materials used, the fences height and length, labor costs, and different features or customizations. 

The length and height are big considerations because of the material and installation costs.

Premium wood or thick vinyl tend to be more expensive than pressure-treated wood or thin vinyl, and decorative details like lattice tops, picture frame borders, and decorative caps also add to the costs.

Board on board fencing FAQ

Are board on board fences more expensive?

Yes, board on board fences are often more expensive because they require almost double the amount of pickets. The cost can vary by length, height, style, wood type, and other details, however.

Do board on board fences last longer?

Yes, board on board fences are a solid and long-lasting investment for your home. Generally, board on board fence posts are dug deeper and have longer boards than the average fence. They’re also made of wood, which is strong and durable with regular maintenance.

Do board on board fences have to have a cap?

Board on board fences do not have to have a cap, but they look more finished and polished when there’s a clean cap.

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Ready to get your fence installed?

If you want privacy and aesthetics, a board on board fence is a great choice. At Austex Fence and Deck, we offer a wide range of board on board fence options, including wood and vinyl fences with decorative elements, to suit your needs. Get an instant online quote or give us a call!