Customizing your deck railing is becoming a major design trend in 2019. By utilizing plants, materials, accessories, and professional designers, you can make your deck railing systems stand out and achieve the urban garden look that you have always wanted. Continue reading our deck railing guide to learn more.
1. Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Deck Railing Ideas
Deck Railing Planters
If you’re trying to find deck railing decorations, one trend that seems to get hotter every year is planter boxes. Planter boxes are typically smaller square or rectangular containers that can be used to grow herbs, flowers, or vegetables. Planter boxes are also the perfect solution for those who are looking to integrate unique design elements like deck railing flower boxes into their outdoor deck railing systems. They can also work well if you have limited time or space to create a traditional garden. Planters can be placed on a stand or hung from posts depending on your deck railing height. With so many options available, it’s easy to see why planters are a great choice for any lifestyle and deck railing design.
Deck Railing Shelves
A deck rail shelf is a great way to display plants and all different kinds of art. Regardless of what you choose to put on your shelves, you can’t go wrong with adding extra space for placing things.
Deck Railing Privacy Screens
There is nothing worse than neighbors who won’t leave you alone to enjoy your deck in peace. A privacy screen is one of many outdoor deck railing ideas that pairs well with cable deck railing systems to minimize distractions and help you relax after a long day at work. A simple cover turns your deck railing into a privacy screen.
2. Classic Deck Railing Materials
At first look, vinyl deck railing kits may sound nice, but “vinyl” is really just a fancy way of saying “plastic.” Vinyl could work if you want a cheap deck rail, but you should avoid installing a vinyl railing when you’re looking for that ‘up-scale’ look. Inexpensive often looks cheap.
Aluminum railings look pretty. On the other hand, Aluminum is a soft metal, which means that even alloys will dent, ding, or scratch very easily. An aluminum deck railing kit is usually made up of many pieces, screws and adhesives—not the finished look many seek.
Composite deck railings are intended to be inexpensive alternatives to natural wood. While these materials do not generally rot they are bulked up to be strong enough. The “composite” part of the name means that they are a combination of natural wood, colorants, and plastic. Not many people would view the finished composite rail as anything near elegant. If you should ever decide to change the color you would need to remove and replace the railing as many composites will not normally accept paint.
Wood is a very common building material and completely natural. Unfortunately, a wooden deck railing tends to rot if it isn’t treated, which undermines the safety and look of your deck railing balusters. Treated lumber has colorant applied in addition to the anti-rot chemicals. The best wood for a deck railing is cedar if you are willing to spend the extra money, but spruce, pine, or fir are much cheaper options that look very similar. A wood deck railing is a good option as long as the upkeep is not a problem. Without periodic refinishing, splinters, fading, warpage, and rot can mar the look.
Panel infill can be customized by etching or engraving designs directly on deck railing panels that are made from glass, acrylic or other panel materials. A glass deck railing system looks beautiful and offers a contemporary style. A deck railing with glass panels, mesh panels, hog wire panels, metal panels, or plastic panels is definitely recommended if you can find the right designer for your idea.
Wrought iron can give your deck railing an old fashioned look that pairs well with traditional designs. This is especially true if you are thinking about painting and want black railing. This type of metal is stronger than aluminum, but higher maintenance than stainless steel, requiring periodic repainting to prevent rust. This increased cost of ownership should be taken into account when deciding on wrought iron.
The clean look and best long term value of stainless steel is your sure bet for railing because it not only looks amazing but, as the name stainless implies, is low maintenance. AGS’ stainless steel deck rail is durable, easy to install, and a best value solution. Horizontal bar railing is a perfect option if you want to keep things simple. AGS’ brushed stainless steel components are our most popular, with powder coated and then polished following. Check out our gallery to learn more about horizontal deck railing designs and vertical deck railing ideas.
3. Buy Deck Railing Hardware and Deck Railing Accessories Online
Always Order Directly from Trusted Manufacturers
It just so happens that you can customize anything by buying supplies from the internet. If you just want to modify a few deck railing sections, you can do that by buying deck railing components online. However, you need to be careful when ordering deck railing parts since those deck railing brackets that are available on Amazon.com probably won’t fit your current deck railing. Parts of a deck railing can also be made from a grade of steel that isn’t nearly as corrosion resistant as A316. You would be left with nothing but disappointment and resentment if that expensive railing system started to rust shortly after you installed it. Additionally, a product listing might specify the grade is A316, but that isn’t always the case because fraud is so common with some sellers. You wouldn’t buy gold from a random seller on Amazon.com, so why would a stainless steel railing system be any different? Manufacturers based in the United States of America are heavily regulated, so you can rest assured that you are getting exactly what you paid for. If you ever need a deck railing replacement part, you can go to the AGS Stainless E-commerce store.
Installing Deck Railing Hardware
The parts of a deck railing system are complex, so you should make sure that you know what you are doing before installing deck railing posts or anything that affects the safety of family or friends. Having extra deck railing pieces after performing an installation is the worst because it means that you probably did something wrong. If you’re interested in how to build a deck railing or how to install a deck railing, you can watch our installation videos. Figuring out how to build a cable deck railing is quick and easy with our cable railing installation video. Pro Tip: When performing a deck railing installation, always make sure that your deck railing baluster is level. In addition, your deck railing posts should be aligned with the edge of your deck before attaching them with deck railing anchors.
4. Buy a Complete Railing System from a Company with Deck Railing Designers and Engineers
Deck Railing Regulations
You may have thought “how high does a deck railing need to be?” Since we are experts at making custom deck railings, one benefit of choosing AGS Stainless is that you won’t ever have to worry about violating any deck railing code requirements with serious penalties—our CAD designer design according to the IBC (International Building code). The consequences of not following these codes could cost you thousands of dollars down the line. When you sell your home, a building inspector will need to approve any modifications that you made after buying it. If your railing doesn’t meet these building codes, then you could have to completely tear out the railing system and pay to have it replaced with one that does meet the building codes. The main regulation that could result in this kind of situation is the deck railing spacing code. Regulated areas include deck railing post load, vertical deck railing baluster spacing, and horizontal deck railing infill spacing. Post spacing for deck railings is regulated to ensure a minimal side-load. Baluster spacing is regulated to ensure children from sticking their heads between railings. The majority of states in America follow the IBC and may also have a local deck railing height code that is enforced to stop people from falling over the top handrail. Additionally, a deck stair railing code might require a sturdy material like stainless steel for the railing on your deck’s steps. Imagine if someone reached out to grab a deck handrailing and it just crumbled before their eyes. The top handrails must follow thickness and width rules to prevent bending when people lean on your railing system as well as provide a safe grip. It is always better to have adequate toprail dimensions that were approved by AGS Stainless’ engineering rather than a flimsy size that will allow your railing to bend when people lean on it. No matter the regulatory environment, we will work with you to come up with simple deck railing plans and simple deck railing designs, which are easy to understand and always meet your specifications. Then we will ship everything to you in convenient, custom deck railing kits with step-by-step installation instructions.
Prefabricated Deck Railing Options
Prefabricated deck railings from AGS Stainless use metal deck railing designs that are specifically manufactured to save you time and money. If you didn’t have a custom prefab deck railing, installing a side mount deck railing would be very difficult since you would need to weld the railing pieces together on your own. Some post kits from other manufacturers have 10 or more pieces you have to assemble before you even try to mount them. AGS posts are single-piece, ready to install without any cutting, grinding, or welding. AGS’ deck cable railing kits use some of the most popular deck railing styles and deck cable railing ideas. AGS Stainless can give you a wire railing look with cable deck railing hardware that minimizes waste and reduces inefficiencies. A cable railing uses a stainless wire cable as infill. You can even light up your cable deck railing with StarLight LED Accent Lights, which utilize solar charged batteries and brilliant LED bulbs. Our Stainless steel deck railing system with cables or wires is our Rainier line. We also sell glass panel deck railings under the Glacier brand, and horizontal stainless steel deck railing bars that are used in our Olympus products. AGS Stainless offers a variety of ways to customize your railing system by letting you choose important aspects like the type of top rail, infill, finish, and mounting method. The best deck railing systems on the market today are part of the Clearview® product line and AGS Stainless is a leading deck railing manufacturer based in the United States of America.