railing materials

6 Key Factors to Consider When Choosing Railing Materials

Adhering to building codes plays a critical role not only in enhancing the beauty of the house but also in preventing injuries. When you have unprotected decks and stairs, you are exposing your family to the risk of falls and unwanted injuries. It has been reported that at least 1 million individuals injure themselves on stairs annually, which is a considerable number of people.

It gets worse when you know that these injuries can be prevented by installing rails on the stairs and decks in our homes. If you have exposed stairs in your home, you need to get the right railing materials and fix the problem. Wood rails, chain slings, and stainless steel cables are some of the railing supplies you can use to protect your stairs. So, how do you choose the right railing materials for your stairs and decks?

1. Cost-Effectiveness

The amount of money you have to spend will always determine the type of railing materials you will consider for your stairs and decks. Wood seems to be the simplest and most affordable material, while also being one of the most desirable. But be sure to go the extra mile and get quality wood railings that will protect your family for many years. Cheap wood may not hold up the way you need to prioritize safety. In general, balance cost with quality.

2. Aesthetic Appeal

Railings are not only protective materials, but they’re also essential parts of the house. Therefore, besides offering to protect, they should provide aesthetic appeal to your house. Professionally-curved and installed wood railings will offer the aesthetic appeal that you’ve been looking for. However, stainless steel cable may prove to be the most aesthetically appealing railing material that you can use in your house. The shiny appearance will add something extra to the home, especially if you’re drawn to a more modern design.

3. General Upkeep

Not everyone is fond of regular maintenance. If you’d rather not devote a lot of time to upkeep, make sure that you select railing materials that require minimum maintenance possible. Although you’ll have to take on some tasks to maintain your handrail for longevity, you don’t want to choose an option that will require constant attention. Make sure that you understand the basic maintenance techniques such as painting, sealing, or regular cleaning. The aesthetic appeal this area of the home will depend on how much general upkeep you do of your rails.

4. Durability and Longevity

Aluminum, cable rail fittings, and stainless steel cable railing fittings are some of the durable railing materials you’ll find in the industry. Every homeowner wants to install materials that will last for many years before they can be replaced. Durability and longevity are important factors that you should consider, particularly if your handrails are located outdoors. Due to extreme weather conditions, railings located outside could wear and tear with ease. Even if your railings are indoors, they could become damaged with rough handling. Regular repair and maintenance will play a vital role in their longevity, but be sure to choose a railing that will stand the test of time.

5. ADA Compliance

The Americans with Disability Act (ADA) is a government regulation that requires that all railing materials used be consistent with the needs of people with disabilities. ADA compliance is an important consideration in commercial properties. However, the government has also reinforced the standards in residential stairs. Always check whether the materials you’re using (and the overall design) are ADA compliant. When you buy railing materials, consider recently manufactured materials because they are more likely to be compliant, as compared to materials manufactured some years ago.

6. Building Codes

Besides being ADA compliant, other building codes are usually enforced by the local authorities when building deck or stair rails. You may not know all the necessary building codes in your area, which means that you have to liaise with railing suppliers to understand what works in your area. Height is an important building code that you should check when you are buying railing materials. Working with reputable contractors will allow you to easily access the information you need and ensure your design will be executed properly the first time.

Protect your family against injuries by buying railing materials from reliable American cable and rigging companies. At American Cable and Rigging, we’ve been in the industry since 1987, making us among the most experienced and reliable companies when it comes to cable and rigging supplies and railing materials. For more information, please contact us today.