Whether you are setting up an electric fence or have had your electric fence set up for a while there are common mistakes and changes in conditions that can result in you saying to yourself, “Why isnt my electric fence working?”
Poor earth or grounding connections on electric fences.
The most commonly overlooked electric fence fault and the most important factor of an electric fence circuit in some respects is the earth (negative, – symbol or ground). The electric fence earth is vital for the flow of the electrical charge that travels along the fence wire and though the animal thus creating a shock. If there are insuficient beneficial factors (discussed below) resulting in a poor earth connection, little to no shock will be felt by the animal you wish to contain or exclude from your electric fence boundary.
There are several factors that combine to give your earth part of the circuit an excellent path for electrical flow resulting in larger more effective shocks.
- Surface area of earth stakes – More surface area means an easier path for electrons to find their way and flow through with less resistance as they travel through the ground. Think of your earth stakes as arials for the electrical flow to find home. More is better and you can never have too many earth stakes!
- Condition of the soil – Different soils and mediums have different electrical properties. Dry soils holding less moisture and conductive materials have a harder time allowing the flow of electrons in your electric fence setup. Consder using Bentonite Earth Stake Kits and water to increase the conductivity of your earth stake bank.
- Distance from the energiser- If your earth stakes are too far from your energiser the power traveling through the ground becomes weaker the futher it has to travel. For longer distances consider running an earth wire and connecting earth stake banks at set intervals. Intervals should be set in consideration of the soil or medium conductivity and moisture levels.