We install commercial and residential handrails made from aluminum, vinyl, wood, composite products, and glass. Many styles of handrails are available for second story or ground floor decks. Design assistance is available at no cost.
Handrails are need to support in excess of 250 pounds lateral or sideways load. Handrails must be at least 36″ high. Of course second story decks are common and require a handrail. They are set to 42″ high.
Handrail posts are held in place by three different attachment techniques:
A. The deck posts can have feet that are simply bolted to the top surface of the deck. This is the worst method of attachment since it is normally not strong. On water proof decks this technique can cause leaks.
B. The deck posts can penetrate the deck surface and be attached to the supporting structure. This is an excellent method, but the building of it must be incorporated into the deck building process. It works for both water proof and non water proof decks. All water proof decking systems have techniques to handle deck penetrations of this type.
C. Finally, the posts can be attached to the perimeter of the deck by mounting them onto the outside fascia boards surrounding the deck. This is an excellent method and for water proof decks is even a better solution since the posts do not penetrate the decking membrane. This technique also gives more usable space on the deck. A visual disadvantage to this technique is that outside corners require two posts.
Handrails are made in aluminum, vinyl, composite material, glass, steel and a mixture of these materials.
You may desire to see through the handrail or not. In some second story situations, privacy is desired from the people looking up and in that case a solid vinyl handrail works well. For an open handrail all the options of vinyl, aluminum, composite, cable steel and glass are available.