What is High Tensile Wire?

November 8, 2022 by
Mike Gais
| 1 Comment

High tensile wire is the product of high carbon steel with a carbon content of .28%. Other wire fencing is made of low carbon steel with a maximum of 10% carbon content. The higher the carbon content, the stronger the wire. Due to the class 3-zinc coating on our high tensile wire, our wire has a life expectancy of 30-40 years.”The higher the class, the longer it will last” is our saying here at Powerfields.

Is high tensile difficult to install?
High tensile wire is easy to install and requires little maintenance. There is no need for pre-stretching of the wire, just put it on the posts and pull it tight. High tensile wire can be installed on fewer post than low carbon wire. The fence will remain tight, and even spring back into place after being hit with a brute force. High tensile fence is commonly used along busy highways to protect the valuable livestock. This fence has the ability to stop a car skidding towards the fence without breaking the strands. 

How much maintenance is required with high tensile fence?
With proper brace assemblies and installation, sagging is virtually eliminated. Heavy snows, ice, or severe temperature changes have very little effect on the life of your fence, therefore reducing the maintenance time and eliminating the need to restretch fence.

It is still important to have regular inspection on the fence to prevent problems. Be sure to keep the fence free of weeds and underbrush, as well as clearing any fallen limbs or branches off the fence. Never burn weeds along the fence line as they cause damage to the wire and posts. It is recommended to mow or use herbicides in these areas.

If the fence is built in an area with harsh winters, the tension on the fence can be reduced when severe cold weather hits and retighten the fence in the spring. Never tension over 250 pounds!

Is high tensile hard to splice?
High tensile can be very easily spliced despite the stiffness of the wire. Crimp sleeves are used to connect wires and maintain the integrity of the wire strength. 

What is the breaking strength?
A common rule of thumb is the higher the gauge number, the lower the breaking strength. For example, 14 gauge class 3 has a breaking strength of 630 pounds, but a 12 ½ gauge class 3 wire has a breaking strength of 1345 pounds.Breaking strength can be calculated on any gauge of high tensile wire using the diameter. A common misunderstanding is is PSI and KSI. These two are simply a conversion of one another.

PSI = pound per square inch
KSI = Kilo-pound per square inch = 1000 PSI

Example: 12 ½ gauge wire with 210,000 PSI
Area = (12 x diameter)2 x 
Minimum Breaking Strength = Area x PSI
Area=(12 x 0.099")2 x 3.14 = 0.0077"2
Minimum Breaking Strength = 0.0077"2 x 210,000PSI = 1617 pound

See our fence wire essentials, tools, connectors, and accessories.

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