This week’s electric fence article from Jason Detzel describes how to set up a Pos/Neg fence to keep it hot even when weeds begin to build up along the bottom wire. It’s a lesson he learned from first-hand experience. You’ll appreciate the diagrams included, as well as the video that shows how to implement it on an electric netting fence.
If you live and work in an arid environment, where soils become drier through the summer, you’ve probably already heard of the Pos/Neg set up. You’ve also probably been told you can solve this problem by keeping the soil around your ground rods damp. The theory is that this provides the moisture necessary for the charge to run from the fence, through the animal to the ground rod, and back through the soil, the animal and back to the fence. That’s a complete circuit. But does damp soil around the ground rods really work?
I don’t know. I’ve done it, and I’ve told others to do it. And I see it shared all over the place as a good solution.
But it doesn’t make sense to me that wet soil around a ground rod would be enough to make up for the all the rest of the very dry soil between the animal and the ground rod. How does the charge travel through that dry soil without any moisture to carry it?
In my years working with fence and livestock, I’ve come across a variety of things folks believe work, but that don’t at all. Is this one of those things?
If you’re an electrician, or a fence expert, please chime in. Or if you have some data, like before and after fence strength showing that moisture around ground rods changed something, do let us all know. I think it would be great if we could clear this up for folks. After all, our portable electric fences are what make so many of us successful. So the more we know, the better off we’ll be.
I’m looking forward to your input!
Thanks for reading!
P.S. We’ve already gotten some answers. Check the comments below. 🙂