Last updated: August 12, 2021

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Today we are going to talk about barbed wire. If you need to fence your property, be it urban or mainly rural, this is still one of the best options. We will teach you in this article how to choose the perfect model for your needs.

Even at a time when new technologies emerge at great speed, barbed wire continues to be widely used. This efficiency defies the limits of time, since it is a very simple delimitation tool.

What are the ideal characteristics a barbed wire needs for your property? In which circumstances should it be used and in which are other options better? How to choose the best one? We will answer all these questions below!


  • Barbed wire is used in both rural and urban properties. The application is much more recommended in the former case, since for the latter there are already more modern options.
  • There are several important categories for choosing the ideal barbed wire. You need to know exactly what you are going to use it for to get the breaking load and the distance between barbs, for example, right.
  • Barbed wire is sold in large rolls, so you need to know how to measure the price per metre. It is from this that you will know if a certain product is cost-effective or not.

The Best barbed wire: Our Picks

There are several barbed wire manufacturers currently on the Brazilian market, and even within them, different models are produced. Which ones are the best? We have separated some barbed wire models that you should certainly take into consideration:

Buying guide

Would you like to better understand what the uses of barbed wire are and how to read the technical specifications? And how to choose which one fits your property?

Then it's time to discover the advantages, disadvantages and categories of barbed wire

 Imagem mostra uma silhueta feminina obervando uma cerca de arame farpado em uma cidade.

Barbed wire is still used in urban environments as well. (Source: Takeshi Charly/

What is barbed wire and what is it used for?

Barbed wire is nothing more than strands of wire woven together with some barbs, usually quite sharp, pointing in all directions. It is usually sold in large rolls for the construction of fences.

The main use of barbed wire is in rural areas. It is necessary to prevent livestock, mainly cattle, but also other smaller animals from escaping.

With its resistance, barbed wire fulfils this function very well, as the animals will not approach it, understanding that this is the maximum delimitation of the space they have, after a first contact.

Barbed wire is also used in urban security, protecting homes and businesses from invasions. We will talk more about this below, but this is not the most recommended application of the tool.

Interested in learning about how barbed wire has developed over time and its historical importance? Then watch the video below from the channel Inventions in History!

How to choose the barbed wire for the rural property?

There are three primary factors when choosing a barbed wire for a rural property: climate, animals raised and topography.

The climate influences the need for better protected and more resistant materials. It is necessary to understand if the place of the property is exposed to constant rain or to a very strong and constant sun. Actions that, over time, can damage the fence.

The worse these conditions are, the more you should invest in wires that contain extra galvanization or protections made of materials such as PVC. These will prevent rust and other damage that reduces the effectiveness of the wire.

The second issue is the size of the animals. The bigger and heavier the animals, the greater the resistance, or breaking load, of the wire. With cattle, the ideal is to use 350kgf models, while with birds or smaller mammals, 250kgf will do a good job.

Finally, the topography. In totally flat terrain, without geographic accidents, it is recommended that a smooth wire be used, not the barbed wire, which is required when there are ups and downs or variations in relief.

Smooth wire has some characteristics that differ from barbed wire. Check the table below:

Barbed wire Smooth wire
Recommendations Lands with uneven topography, lands that need security against invasions Flat lands, without so much need for protection
Breaking load Between 250 and 350 kgf On average, 700 kgf
Functioning Prevents animals from escaping because it causes discomfort or pain when in contact with the wire Prevents animals from escaping because of the high breaking load

Should barbed wire be used on urban land?

Another common use of barbed wire is to protect urban land, preventing property invasions and actions such as robberies and assaults. However, in this case, it is losing ground to more effective methods.

Barbed wire loses out when compared to electric fences, alarms and concertinas. It offers less security and can be cut more easily.

Check the table below to see the advantages and disadvantages of the urban use of barbed wire:

  • Lower price
  • Easier to install
  • Offers less security, imposes less respect on potential intruders
  • Can be cut more easily
  • It is an outdated and obsolete method of protection

How to install a barbed wire fence?

The first fundamental thing when installing a barbed wire fence is the use of protective equipment. A thick glove and a long-sleeved jacket will prevent you from cutting yourself or getting into an accident.

Stakes must be driven into the ground, which can be made of wood or concrete, and then the unwinding of the barbed wire must begin. This can be a lengthy process depending on the size of the property, but is not particularly difficult.

How much does it cost and where to buy a roll of barbed wire?

The price of barbed wire will vary according to the size of the roll and the quality of the material. It is not common to find very low metric sizes on the market, since the current use is mostly for fencing rural properties.

Rolls can vary between 100 and 500 meters. Prices, in turn, usually range from approximately £ 50 to £ 500, respecting the above-mentioned variations in length and quality.

To find a good variety of barbed wire models, we recommend that you go to an agricultural or building materials shop. Large chains such as Telhanorte, Dicicco and C&C should have quality options.

To buy over the Internet, the best choice is the Brazilian Amazon, with products from the main barbed wire brands. Amazon International and Mercado Livre are also good choices, as well as the sites of the aforementioned chains.

Buying criteria: what to consider when choosing barbed wire

We have already explained how and when you should use a barbed wire fence, as well as some issues such as breaking load. But we've separated a few more important features for you to pay attention to before you buy:

Below, we talk a little more about each one:


One of the most important points for a barbed wire fence is its resistance to rust. If it suffers from oxidation, it can cause several serious problems in both animals and humans, most notably tetanus.

Therefore, prefer wires that have extra protection against rust. The presence of zinc is important. It usually appears from the galvanization, which in some examples is triple galvanization. There are even those with PVC coating.

Imagem mostra uma paisagem com uma cerca de arame farpado ao centro.

The barbed wire needs to be made of a material resistant to the actions of nature. (Source: Michael Gaida/


The diameter of a barbed wire is important when thinking about the breaking load it needs to have. Thicker wires tend to have higher strength, thus preventing species from being able to break through the fence.

This diameter usually varies between 1 and 3 mm. The larger it is, the more you will also need to distance one line of wire from another. All this should be taken into account when building your fence.

Price per metre

As barbed wires are not always sold in the same sizes - there are variations from 100 to 500 metres - the final price can be misleading. Pay attention if you are not paying too much for a material that is not of such high quality.

Before making the purchase, do a simple calculation dividing the total value by the meters of the roll. This way, you will arrive at the price per meter and you will be able to have a real notion of how much you are really paying for the chosen barbed wire.

Distance between barbs

Which animals do you need to avoid escaping? In case of urban use, is the idea to prevent trespassing? You need to take all of this into account when looking at the barb-to-barb distance of the wire you choose.

There is no way, for example, to have a large distance between barbs to prevent the escape of small animals. They can simply pass through a non-barbed period, as the breaking load will be less than that of an ordinary plain wire.

So, know what the function of the wire will be so you don't get the barb distance wrong!

(Featured image source: MabelAmber/