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Breaking Wire: High Tensile Wire vs. Low Carbon Wire

Our FencePro Steven Sarson shows us the difference in breaking strength between high tensile wire and low carbon wire. Compared to low carbon wire, high-tensile barbed wire can withstand 25 to 35% more pressure before breaking. Because high-tensile wire only has 3% elongation, compared to low-carbon wire’s 13% elongation, high-tensile barbed wire doesn’t sag from snow load or when a large livestock pushes up against it.Deciding between high tensile wire and low carbon wire is a matter of what type of fence you are building.

Which is Right for You?

It depends on your long-term goals for your fence. If you want a sturdy and reliable fence, then factors such as breaking strength, flexibility, and longevity matter. The differences between high tensile wire vs. low carbon wire are a few, but vital to note.

Low carbon wire has a carbon content rate of .28 while high tensile wire has a .64 carbon content rate. High tensile wire tends to be lighter yet stronger than wire with lower carbon content.

This means high tensile wire is less likely to elongate or sag than low carbon wire under pressure. High tensile wire has an average breaking strength of 1,500 pounds and a 3% elongation rate. The high tensile wire can handle pressures from animals like cattle and horses.

Also, when working with high tensile wire, installers usually don’t have to stretch the wire by much for the fence to maintain stability, making high tensile wire products a preferrable choice for clients looking for a more durable fence.

If you are just looking for a basic economical fence that does the simple task of protecting your property, then choosing a low-carbon wire product would suffice.

The Advantages of High Tensile Wire

Choosing high tensile wire has several benefits. First, high tensile wire products are less likely to sag and elongate than low carbon options. Due to the wire’s higher carbon content, high tensile fencing products tend to maintain more strength and durability though they are lighter.

It is also easier to install and maintain a high tensile fence. Putting up a high tensile fence takes less posts during the installation process and the lower elongation rate means the fence will require less repairs and maintenance in the future. The quality of high tensile wire can make it worth the investment.

Once set up, high tensile fences can withstand extreme weather and temperature changes throughout the year without sagging or weakening. From our customers’ stories, we find that high tensile fences stand tall despite circumstances. It will not rust or corrode easily thanks to premier coatings used with Bekaert products. A good high tensile fence will spring back to form even when under pressure.

Choosing a quality wire product is an important decision for any fencing project. The difference between high tensile wire and low carbon wire depends on the needs of your fence project.

However, high tensile wire offers a wide range of benefits from added strength to longevity. If quality matters, then high tensile wire may be the way to go.