How to Beat an Electric Fence

Disclaimer: “This content is only for educational purposes for fence users.”

How to beat an electric fence

  1. Create a short circuit in the fence wires by attaching fence wires to the ground or a stake using a metal rod. A short circuit will drain a lot of power from the fence.
  2. Insulates your body(hands) with a thick cloth, carpet or flow mat to prevent catching current through the fence.
  3. Using an insulated rod, increase the distance between fence strands (wires) so you can pass through them.
  4. Use a wooden ladder to climb through the fence.

A shorted fence leaks current into the ground or any attached metal. The fence loses current constantly, is unable to maintain power and is almost disabled. So you can beat an electric fence by shorting it, getting a slight shock.

Use of good insulators, such as wood/plastic, folded carpet, or floor mats, will hinder voltage pulse to reach your body.

So if you ever have to get past/beat an electric fence, you can do it in two ways.

Step 1: Create a short circuit in the fence

The easiest way to beat an electric fence preventing a hard shock is by shorting out your electric fence.

Use a metal rod or wire to short your electric fence. Take a wire/rod(conductor) to connect fence wires to the ground surface or a metal, such as a metal post. Car jumper cables can also shorten fence wires to the ground.

electric fence short circuit

Current will leak into the ground or the metal object. Power in the electric fence will be drained into the soil or metal, delivering a less powerful shock.

Household electric fences output relatively low amperage, giving you an awful, shocking memory but electrocution incidents are rare.

Step 2: Insulate your body before touching the fence

Human skin offers 1000-100,000 Ω resistance against the current, but still, it gets penetrated by the current. While if you secure your hands/foot with an insulator such as cloth, it will offer more resistance to prevent you from a severe electric shock.

How well you are insulated from the earth(soil) and fence wires decides how powerful the shock you’ll receive is. So, find an insulator such as car rubber floor mats, blankets or carpets to insulate your body from the fence wires and ground surface.

As the human body is a conductor if someone touches the wires of the electric fence while barefoot, he will receive a more substantial shock than wearing shoes. So a pair of good insulating boots/shoes will keep you from a severe shock.

If you are unsure if your boots are insulated, place a thick wood board, carpet or mat between your shoes and the ground. Layers of non-conductive materials will increase resistance(insulation), preventing current from passing your body to the ground.

Hence the current(shock) will have to penetrate through more insulators(wood, mat) to reach your body resulting in weaker to no shock.

Tip 1: To ensure the fence carries current, hold a piece of grass and touch it to a fence wire. If the fence is live(electrified), you’ll feel a voltage pulse in your fingers.

Tip 2: A person kneeling on the ground will be severely shocked if he touches the live fence wires without any insulation or resistive material.

How do criminals bypass electric fences?

By shorting the electric fence with a conductor(metal rod/wire), they lower your electric fence power. Current leaks through the rod into the ground or an earthed metal bar nearby. It is easy to get through such fences, continuously leaking current.

They may wrap insulators to bend the fence or lift wires to pass through them. If you wrap an insulator around the fence wires or your body, very less current will follow up to your body. So bypassing an electric fence will be easy.

Thieves and criminals can bypass a fence by crawling under the fence wire to prevent touching and getting shocked.

Most electric fences are not configured to a sound security alarm/(siren), so anyone can cut fence wires using an insulated wire cutter.

Criminals know several tactics, such as using wire clamps to attach fence wires together and cutting them without interrupting the security alarms.

Suppose the electrified fence wires are installed over vibracrete or wooden walls/fences. Anyone can break the panels and climb through the electric fence wires.

Electrified fences used in jails, concentration camps or no-go areas to prevent someone from escaping or intruding are made to kill. However, due to legal instructions(laws), electric fences in residential areas should be safe.

Farm/garden electric fence outputs very low amps(0-100 mA ) compared to the home power supply or the deadly fences in restricted areas.

Preventions against Intruders:

  1. Electrified barbed wire is the best option to prevent robbers (intruders) from entering your property, especially from climbing the walls.
  2. Along the electric fence, you should install anti-climb spikes such as rola/razor spikes to keep someone from jumping into your property.
  3. Sirens/alarms can deter someone from cutting off fence wires, hence is a great preventive measure.

How did Shin Dong-Hyuk escape deadly fencing?

Shin Dong-hyuk, a famed prisoner, escaped a North Korean concentration camp(total control zone). Shin, with his 40 y/o friend Park, fled Camp-14 by climbing over an electrified fence.

Park tried first and got stuck in the fence wires and got electrocuted. Shin passed over the fence wires utilizing Park’s body as a shield/insulator from fence wires.

Shin’s escape from North Korean concentration camps involved short-circuiting a fence and insulation. When Shin passed over Park’s body and fence wires, he got much less shock and survived.

Park got electrocuted(stuck), and his body was shorted between the fence and the ground. Shin managed to climb over his friend’s body, which acted as an insulator; thus, he escaped and survived.

Hence amperage is the volume of electrons(current)that kills someone. If amps are kept the same, 240 or 7KV(7000 V) hurts the same.

As the number of electrons(amps) increases, you get a more nasty shock. That’s why electric fences installed in residential areas are not meant to kill someone.

How to climb an electric fence?

If you ever have to climb over an electric fence, short out the fence to the ground or any earthed stake with a metal rod/wire. Shorting the electrified fence with a conductor drains a lot of power from the electric fence and reduces the severity of the shock.

A wooden ladder can also get you past heavy metal wires (barbed). Wood ladders are insulated so you won’t be exposed to fence wires and currents.

To touch/climb an electric fence without getting shocked, insulate your body parts(hands/feet) as much as possible. Twist (tying) a cloth around your hands, and use carpet/floor mats or insulated shoes and gloves.

Insulated gloves and shoes prevent the whole current from entering your body. Insulated stuff such as floor mats, blankets and carpets made from carbon-free materials improves insulation.

So by covering yourself with heavy insulation, you can climb an electric fence receiving a low or zero-intensity shock.

It is possible to suffer a severe shock if the insulation(gloves) gets pinched while climbing the barbed fence.

Please keep your jeans(thin clothing) away from the fence wires. In an electric fence, high voltage/pressure (5-10KV) causes the current in wires to arc through the air to your body. It may disturb your balance while climbing the electric fence.

Climbing a livestock(farm or home use) electric fence isn’t dangerous unless you have serious heart conditions. Electrocution incidents from live fences are rare and occur mostly if someone gets entangled (stuck) in fence wires.

While the electric fences at jails or high-security areas carry a lot more amps(current ), killing anyone climbing in a very short time.

Remember that: electric fences at security-proof areas such as airports, jails or military camps could have high power, enough to electrocute(dead) someone climbing or passing through.


Climbing or getting past an electric fence is not meant to be playing. Only dare to beat an electric fence when no other option is left.

Remember, sticking to live fences may lead you to death in less than a minute(electrocution).

You have to short the fence to the ground surface or any nearby metal using a conductor(rod). Wear gloves/ shoes and use other insulating objects, such as floor mats, carpet etc, to keep you away from electric shocks and arcs.

Read the complete guide above for a better explanation. If you still have a relevant query, ask us in the comments below.

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