How Electric Fencing Works

Electric fence systems are used to control a wide variety of animals. A typical electric fence is a psychological barrier that keeps farm animals in and wild animals out, even over long distances. The animal will touch the electric fence and become “trained” not to go near the fence.

Once the electric fence is installed correctly, and the animal comes in contact with an electrically charged fence wire, it will feel a shock because the electric current will pass through the animal to earth ground, thus completing the electrical circuit.

How Eelctric Fencing works - diagram

The fence must be well-designed and constructed to absorb some pressure from animals, snow and wind. The fence's charger, also known as an energizer or fence controller, must have enough power for the length of the fence and for the animals being controlled.

Since the earth itself makes up half of the electric fence circuit, it is very important to have a properly installed ground circuit. In areas where poor soil and poor earth grounding conditions exist, a two-wire system can be used with one wire being electrically charged while the other wire acts as earth ground. This two-wire electric fence system is utilized when there are alternating “hot” and ground wires installed.

The electrically charged fence wire must not be allowed to come into contact with shrubs, tall grass, fence posts, nails or any other conductive objects on a continual basis. Otherwise, the electric charge from the fence wire will lose its “shocking” power.

Regardless of what wiring system is utilized, ground rod(s) and their connection to the charger's ground terminal must always be used.

The fence charger is the heart an electric fence system. Finding the best-matched charger for the fence is imperative to successfully contain/exclude animals.

Watch a video on how an electric fence works

 
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