17 August 2018

Does your home have an outside staircase? If it does, then you probably have balustrade railings? Many balustrade in residential homes are made of wood, but in the old days it was not uncommon for balustrade railings to be made from stone as well. While wood is a very common material for use as balustrades, there are different material option for outdoor balustrades today.

Types of Material Options for Outdoor Balustrades

There are four main types of material used today for outdoor balustrading for residential homes, these are wood balustrades, stainless steel balustrades, wrought iron balustrades, and wire balustrades. Each of the different material options for outdoor balustrades for staircases have their pros and cons, and knowing these will help you to make the best decision.

Pros and cons of materials used for outdoor balustrades:

Wood Balustrades

Pros – wood has a natural appeal and is traditionally used in staircase designs. It is easy to work with, soft and warm to the touch, and it is a strong material. There are also many types of timber available to use, such as Tasmanian Oak, Spotted gum, Blackbutt, Victorian Ash, Jarrah, and Mirboo.

Cons – outdoor wood balustrades require regular maintenance, without it wood is prone to rot and is susceptible to pests.

Stainless Steel Round or Square Bar Balustrades

Pros – stainless steel balustrades are versatile and can be used along with wood and glass. It is strong, requires little maintenance, and will last as long as your home.

Cons – it is pricier than other materials, and low grade stainless steel may not be resistant to corrosion and will require more maintenance.

Wrought Iron Twist, Round or Square Bar Balustrades

Pros – timeless appearance, superior durability and strength are the main benefits of wrought iron balustrades.

Cons – it can be expensive, and if not painted or sealed it will require more maintenance as it is prone to corrosion.

Stainless Steel Wire Balustrades

Pros – with all the same benefits of stainless steel, wire balustrades can run either vertically or horizontally, and offers an unobstructed view.

Cons – may not meet building codes in some areas, not compatible with some architecture styles, and wire balustrades may pose a safety concern/hazard for families with small children.

You can learn more about the different material options for outdoor balustrades at Planet Stairs, we manufacture and install internal and external timber staircases, handrails, and balustrades for residential and commercial properties.

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