There are some common issues with tennis court fencing which can impact the use of your court and players. Here, we detail how to fix a court fence which has curled up at the base.

The majority of tennis court fences are constructed of chain wire coated in black plastic, which is stretched over a pipe and belly wire frame and attached to that frame.

Whilst the frame generally consists of a top pipe rail to assist stability as a cost saving, a bottom rail is less common. The chain wire is then attached to a belly wire which is placed approximately 75mm above the court surface level.

Over time, with players running back against the back fence, combined with ball impacts, the bottom of the chain wire begins to curl up, allowing tennis balls to get underneath. The curling may also impact or potentially injure the players – see example below.


This curled up chain wire can become quite a hazard, as the cut off end of the wire will become exposed and the chain wire will begin to unravel.

How to Stop Tennis Court Fencing from Curling Up

Building a new fence

When planning and building a new tennis court fence, it is highly recommended you specify a bottom rail is required on your fence, which ensures attached chair wire is 50mm above the court surface. This will:

  • Keep your fence safe and in good condition for an extended period of time, and
  • Provide space under the fence to facilitate water and small debris run-off from the court.

A 50mm clearance above your tennis court surface is recommended to prevent the build-up of vegetation and debris against the fence, which can prevent water from exiting the court and cause pooling on the court’s surface. That water then releases the dirt it is carrying onto the court surface, with the dirt leading to algae, and algae to moss.

The 50mm clearance also prevents tennis balls from exiting the court.

Fixing an existing chain wire tennis court fence which curls up

If you have a curled-up base on your existing chain wire tennis court fence, it is recommended that a fencer installs a bottom rail between your upright posts, observing the 50mm surface clearance mentioned above.

Ask the fencer to remove the bottom couple of chain wire links before tying the chain wire to the newly installed bottom rail. This will remove the bulk of the curling and extend the safe operating life of your fence – see example below.

Fixing tennis court fencing issues, tennis court fencing wire curling up at bottom

A chain wire tennis court fence with bottom rail installed

For further information about any tennis court maintenance issues,
please contact Sports Clean on or 02 9420 1200.