What is a Patio Railing?
A patio railing is a railing that has been specially designed for an outdoor patio space. AGS Stainless designs and manufactures the Rainier cable patio railing, the Glacier panel patio railing, and the Olympus bar patio railing under the Clearview® brand.
Table of Contents
- Section 1: Patio Railing Types
- Section 2: Patio Railing Materials
- Section 3: Patio Railing Infill
- Section 4: Patio Railing Finishes
- Section 5: Patio Railing Mounting Surfaces
- Section 6: Patio Railing Accessories
- Section 7: Patio Privacy
- Section 8: Patio Gardening
- Section 9: Patio Furniture
Schedule a FREE DESIGN CONSULTATION or continue reading to learn more about patio railings types, patio railing materials, patio railing infill, patio railing finishes, patio railing mounting surfaces, patio railing accessories, patio railing privacy, and the best furniture to pair with a patio railing.
1. Become Familiar with the Types of Patio Railings
There are several types of patio railings, which include residential patio railings, commercial patio railings, and patio stair railings.
Residential Patio Railing
Residential patio railings are often used to make homes more livable. A railing on the patio outside your bedroom can bring a ton of pleasure by being the first thing that catches your eye when you wake up. In this case, cable infill was chosen for a beach home design to provide a spectacular view of tropical foliage, rippling blue water, and beaches with swirling white sand.
Commercial Patio Railing
Commercial patio railings have numerous benefits for businesses. Even a simple patio steps railing with a black powder coating can make a tremendous impact. For example, restaurants may not really want to hire wait staff, but they know that providing a higher level of service to customers will pay off in the form of repeat business, word of mouth marketing, and positive reviews. In a similar way, a restaurant patio railing can provide a high-end atmosphere that shapes customer perception and allows the owner to charge significantly more for food. There is often a front patio railing that runs around the building and leads to a waterfront deck with a stunning view. Consider the fact that expensive paintings are placed on the interior walls of multifamily buildings to rent more apartments or how sculptures are commissioned for the lobbies of office buildings to impress clients. A railing around a patio is no different in delivering a return on investment (ROI) and is frequently more affordable than alternatives.
Patio Stair Railing
A patio stairs railing is required by the International Building Code (IBC) for safety purposes. Railing systems under the Clearview® brand are designed and manufactured by AGS Stainless to meet the IBC, but they can also be beautiful. You have a vision for what a perfect stair railing is supposed to look like. AGS Stainless can help you get there by letting you choose from several materials, infills, finishes, mounts, and accessories.
2. Choose From a Range of Patio Railing Materials
The material for a railing on a patio should be aesthetically pleasing and practical. Some common materials for railings include wood, plastic, aluminum, glass, iron, and stainless steel.
A wood patio railing is simple, affordable, and provides the right amount of contrast for exterior designs. In addition, vibrant stains can be used to achieve a distinctive look that brings out the beautiful grain of natural wood. Be that as it may, wood is likely to rot eventually. Chemical treatments will only make it last longer, so using stainless steel for structural components like posts and infill is recommended to be safe. A wood top rail on a railing system that otherwise has all stainless steel construction could easily be replaced by removing a few screws. If you really like the look of wood posts, you can make rot less likely to occur by placing them on top of stainless steel post brackets. Embedding wood posts in a concrete patio should be avoided because you might have to replace them in the future. Stainless steel cable sleeves can deter rot for wood railing designs by preventing cables from digging into the posts and getting past any moisture barriers. Furthermore, you can make replacing wood posts for cable railing systems easier by choosing stainless steel hardware like swageless fittings and adjustable swageless fittings, which would allow any tensioned cables to be removed with an intuitive release key.
Vinyl is a type of plastic that is cheap and imitates more expensive options like painted wood or metal. Vinyl looks good from far away, so it might make sense for decorative parts of a home that are less accessible. Subsituting vinyl for a wood trim package would reduce fixed material costs and choosing vinyl siding instead of fiber cement siding could lower installation costs. If you want to save money, no one will know that a window on the second floor has a vinyl frame. Although vinyl may seem like an excellent solution for some exterior applications, there is a reason that homes aren't entirely built out of plastic. When it comes to your patio, you want something that looks absolutely fabulous. Vinyl tends to crack when exposed to adverse weather conditions. These cracks would be less noticeable on trim and siding, but become a conspicuous problem on outdoor living spaces like decks and patios. Remember that you get what you pay for with a vinyl patio railing.
An aluminum patio railing is safer than one that is entirely made out of wood or vinyl, but that doesn't mean it is visually appealing. Initially, a painted aluminum railing might look the same as one made out of any other material. However, aluminum is a very soft metal relative to iron or stainless steel. A lack of durability means that frequent use will eventually contribute to a warped appearance. That coat of paint won't matter if you have a big, ugly dent in your railing. Do yourself a favor and skip aluminum if that kind of thing would bother you.
Glass patio railing systems are mostly used to provide completely unobstructed views. A glass patio or deck railing is quite versatile since it would be compatible with several different exterior designs. There is a reason why major companies like Amazon and Google use steel and glass to build their massive corporate offices. Glass is especially exquisite and looks good with practically everything.
Installing an iron railing on a patio may sound like a good idea because wrought iron patio railings and fences were used in several older homes. However, any type of iron requires periodic painting to prevent rust. Plus, once an iron patio railing starts to rust, you might as well replace it because the problem will only get worse and painting over corroded areas doesn't hide the problem. Just imagine how embarassing it would be to entertain guests on a patio with a rusted iron railing. When paint is applied in a factory with powder coating technology and stainless steel is used instead of iron, you can achieve that classic look without having to worry about this problem.
A stainless steel patio railing is sleek, simple, and sophisticated and sure to impress. A long term investment in stainless steel for an outdoor patio railing pays dividends in the form of fewer callbacks and less maintenance. Coming back later to fix a problem that never should have happened in the first place could mean losing money on a patio railing installation. For this reason, the best metal patio railing will always be made of stainless steel.
3. Select Your Favorite Kind of Patio Railing Infill
Infill is the part of a railing system between vertical posts and below a horizontal top rail. For patio railing pictures of infill, check out the photo galleries for cable infill, panel infill, and bar infill.
Cable infill is elegant, affordable, and easy to install on a patio. This type of infill for a cable railing system like Rainier is colloqially known as wire infill, but a cable for a patio railing will be much stronger than any wire. Just don't be surprised when people talk about how they want that patio wire railing look. They are basically expressing an interest in a railing with cable infill for their patio. Horizontal cable infill is much more common than vertical cable infill because hanging the cables horizontally requires fewer exterior fittings. Most people prefer factory swaging because it saves installation time. Alternatively, you could save money by doing the swaging yourself with an AGS cable railing tool set. However, DIY (Do-It-Yourself) hand swaging might still be needed if a deck and patio railing are connected by a set of stairs.
Cable Railing Hardware Infographic
This infographic includes various types of hardware that AGS Stainless sells for cable railing systems.
How-To Video: How to Install a Rainier Cable Railing System
This video explains how to install a Rainier railing system with cable infill.
Panel infill is revered for its seemingly endless customization options to accompany any patio space. A panel railing system like Glacier typically uses stainless steel clamps to make it seem like the infill of your choice is suspended in midair. Some popular variations include glass panels and stainless steel mesh panels.
How-To Video: How to Install a Glacier Panel Railing System
This video explains how to install a Glacier railing system with glass panel infill.
Bar infill is component based and the result of cutting-edge prefabrication processes. AGS Stainless uses state-of-the-art technologies like computer-aided design (CAD), three-dimensional (3-D) rendering, fiber laser cutting, and tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding to bring you the latest in a comprehensive line of high quality, custom railing systems. A patio metal railing with bar infill like Olympus not only leads the way with innovative solutions to complicated problems, but also stands the test of time. Although all variations under the Clearview® brand comply with the IBC, a bar railing system with all stainless steel construction takes safety to a new level.
Patio Railing Design and Manufacturing Process at AGS Stainless
AGS Stainless uses a three step design and manufacturing process to create your patio railing system.
How-To Video: How to Install an Olympus Bar Railing System
This video explains how to install an Olympus railing system with bar infill.
4. Pick a Patio Railing Finish That Matches Your Style
A finish is an important design element to consider. The standard finish options for a patio railing system include polished, powder coated, and brushed.
A polished finish creates a shiny, mirrored appearance that reflects light, resists corrosion, and is easier to clean than any other option. The sight of a polished patio railing is frequently all that is needed to close the deal on lavish multi-million dollar homes or posh downtown condominiums. When only the best will do and there is a lot on the line for a huge project, a gleaming, chrome look could make a significant difference.
Powder Coated Finish
Choose a low-maintenance powder coated finish for adding a splash of color to a patio. Using color effectively is one of the best ways to set the tone for an exterior design. A matte black, light gray, or off-white patio railing is generally recommended since neutral colors will look good next to any kind of patio furniture.
Artisan craftsmen at AGS Stainless meticulously brush stainless steel components by hand, so that each weld looks gorgeous. A brushed finish can be distinguished from its counterparts by observing a fine grain that runs in a single direction. Brushed finishes contribute extraordinary value for a wide variety of residential and commercial applications.
5. Decide on a Mounting Surface for a Patio Railing
A patio is defined as a paved outdoor area adjoining a home. Therefore, the most common mounting surfaces for patio railings are concrete and stone.
Concrete is a functional, economical, and contemporary building material for getting the job done without any hassle. It is much cheaper than stone and can be used outside residential and commercial buildings alike to create patios, swimming pools, pathways, and more. Nonetheless, choosing from an assortment of popular contrete patio railing ideas can make these types of areas cozier. Concrete anchor bolts are the hardware of choice to make this happen. Even though it would be easier to pave over a back yard like with the foundation of a home, it isn't really what people want. Green space that incorporates sustainable practices and local plants can preserve the well-being of individuals living in urban or suburban regions. Decorating a concrete patio with a railing is comparable because railings play a role in keeping people safer, happier, and healthier.
Patios with stone slabs are prevailing features for traditional exterior designs. Patio cable railing hardware like a masonry terminal can be utilized for anchoring stainless steel cables to stone surfaces. When designing a patio, it is important to understand how it will be used. Stone is primarily ornamental in nature and quite alluring, but nothing adds value to a property like a stone patio railing system.
6. Enjoy the Outdoors with Patio Railing Accessories
LED accent lights are an accessory that can be used to add both functionality and personality to your patio railing.
Patio Railing Lighting
StarLights "let the sun light up your night." Each one uses solar panels to power an LED light inside a stainless steel outer shell. These accent lights save time with virtually no upkeep required after using a metal mounting kit to put them on a railing system. Alternatively, you could "light up the night anywhere in your yard" with a StarLight garden stake package. Patio railing lights and landscaping lights are essential because they allow you to enjoy the outdoors long after it gets dark.
How-To Video: How to Install StarLight LED Accent Lights
This video explains how to install StarLight LED accent lights.
7. Preserve Privacy with a Patio Screen
The standard patio railing height generally isn't sufficient to offer much privacy or serenity. Patio railing privacy is typically achieved by choosing panel infill or by investing in a good patio railing cover. Patio railing covers are utilitarian, but they also hide the beauty of your railing system.
A patio railing screen is another option for obtaining some degree of privacy. On the other hand, a privacy screen for a patio railing will dramatically increase your overall costs.
8. Select the Proper Gardening Technique for a Patio
Having a garden on a patio is a great way to get outside.
A patio rail planter is a decorative container for growing plants that you can put next to your railing system. By strategically placing patio railing planters, you can turn your patio into a tranquil sanctuary and express your creativity at the same time. You might think that you don’t have enough space to create a DIY patio railing garden. Vertical gardening solves this problem by using a railing system like a trellis that allows your plants to grow upward and around it. Picking cable infill or bar infill in conjunction with climbing plants in pots or planter boxes would allow you to create a green foliage barrier, which can accentuate the beauty of a partially exposed stainless steel finish.
Patio railing flower boxes are an attractive option since they can be hung from your railing system. Plastic boxes are widely available in many shapes and sizes. On the plus side, they are reasonably priced, lightweight, and can usually be adjusted to grip the top rail of your railing system. Unfortunately, frost and ultraviolet (UV) rays can make plastic brittle and more likely to crack.
An elevated garden uses patio railing planter boxes instead of traditional beds. Elevated gardening prevents weeds, facilitates watering, and makes it possible to grow organic fruits and vegetables by deterring insects without the need for harsh pesticides. Planters for a patio railing are usually made of wood or metal. A wooden patio railing planter box could provide excellent insulation for plants and would be fairly easy to customize. However, wood can also attract pests like termites. Wood treatments solve this problem, but they can harm your health if you are growing fruits or vegetables for consumption rather than flowers for appearance purposes. Metal planter boxes made of stainless steel are dazzling and durable like patio railing systems designed by AGS Stainless. Planter boxes are very adaptable because they can be combined with countless patio furnishings like sofas, loveseats, tables, chairs, and much more to complement particular exterior designs.
9. Complement an Exterior Design with Patio Furniture
Almost all patio and deck railing designs use furnishings that follow an exterior design trend. Check out this content for more patio and deck railing ideas.
Inspirational Video for DIY Patio Railing Ideas
The following video features a variety of furniture ideas that you could use on your own patio.
Modern Exterior Design
Modern exterior design refers to the type of post-industrial revolution style that was popular in the early 1900s and stretched until around the late 1950s after World War II. Any patio furniture choices for this type of exterior design should match the mindset during that period, which was derived from a desire for greater simplicity and functionality.
Contemporary Exterior Design
Conversely, contemporary exterior design began in the 1970s and focuses on current trends. Picking patio furniture for this type of exterior design might be a bit more challenging since it combines several philosophies and is always evolving. However, contemporary outdoor spaces tend to be more decorative and futuristic.
Beach Exterior Design
A beach exterior design emerged as a way to distinguish coastal dwellings as vacation destinations. Everything about it is charming from the bright colors to the inviting atmosphere. The patio furniture for this type of exterior design should be comfortable and promote relaxation.
Why Buy a Patio Railing from AGS Stainless?
Knowing how to build a patio railing isn't necessary because design consultants at AGS Stainless work with you and/or your contractor to determine patio railing designs, project scope, and material specifications for providing a detailed cost estimate. Rainier cable railing systems, Glacier panel railing systems, and Olympus bar railing systems are custom-designed, built-to-order solutions under the Clearview® brand. Contact AGS Stainless today for a FREE DESIGN CONSULTATION.