Though requiring much less maintenance than other fencing materials due to their relatively small size and simple construction, chain link fences are not indestructible. Weather conditions and other outdoor variables can affect the condition of your fence, degrading its ability to keep animals out (and pets in) and reducing the aesthetic appeal of your fence. Thankfully, there are a few relatively simple things that can be done to make sure that your chain link fence remains in the best condition possible for as long as possible.
Tighten and Paint Fasteners
While it is unlikely that your chain link fencing sections themselves will begin to corrode, as they are encased in a plastic coating, there is a risk of rust developing on your fence posts, which are only protected by a thin coat of paint that will eventually degrade. At particular risk are the fasteners that attach your chain link sections to the fence posts. These can loosen with time, which can cause your fence sections to fold over, and they can also corrode more easily since they are not usually coated in anti-corrosion sealant or painted. You'll want to tighten your fasteners as needed, replace them if they begin to show signs of corrosion, and consider painting over them with an outdoor, rust resistant paint to extend their lifespan and reduce long-run repairs on your fence.
Trim Back Plants
One of the most common reasons why your chain link fence may become damaged or begin to lean to one side over time is because of the added weight that nearby plants can transfer onto your fence as they grow through the links. Vines and branches can pull a chain link fence down slowly over time, and their presence will also likely hold moisture against the fence, which can lead to paint flaking and the development of rust on your fence posts. Either transplant or trim these plants back to prevent structural issues from developing later on.
Lubricate Moving Parts
Though this may not apply to your fence if there is no gate installed, you should always keep any hinges, levers, or other moving parts properly lubricated to ensure that they do not eventually begin to rub away their protective paint and thus begin to rust. There are all sorts of lubricating solutions that are available at most hardware and automotive stores that only need to be applied once or twice a year (ideally right before and right after the winter season for best results).
For more tips, contact a fencing company like Gatlin Fence Company.