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Choosing the right options for your deck

Not All Wood Porch Railings are Created Equal
There are generally two reasons to buy new railings: you’re building a new deck, patio, or balcony, or you need to replace existing railings. How can you decide whether it’s time to replace?

If you have wood, begin by pressing a thin blade into your wooden column. If it goes in easily, and feels spongy, the wood is rotting. Now, take a close look at your old columns. You may notice yours have been scrapped together with regular old 2x4s, and not lumber that is pressure-treated and KDAT (kiln dried after treatment).

This is an important distinction, and a good benchmark for picking the right kind of wood going forward. Pressure-treated lumber and KDAT are better options than regular wood. Chemistry makes them rot resistant.

The most popular non-wood options include composite, aluminum, vinyl, and iron. We cover their qualities below.

Railing Styles
Once you’ve explored the best material choices, it’s time to pick the style that works best with your home’s existing architecture. The right choice will add visual appeal to your home. Bring in photos of your home—and existing deck, if any—for expert assistance on choosing the right design style.

We carry many options for deck railings, and each has its own strengths and advantages. Read below about the most popular options we carry, then let our experts help you choose the best railing for your project.


Fortress™ Iron Railings
This is a pre-welded, easily customized and enhanced version of traditional wrought iron railing that brings an upscale look and durability to a patio, deck, or balcony. Iron railings provide a clean, classic appearance that is versatile for a variety of applications and surfaces. Pre-galvanized steel, zinc phosphate, e-coat, and premium powder coating make it the most elegant and durable iron railing system on the market. We carry Black Sand in stock, and can order other finishes, like Gloss Black and Antique Bronze.


Xpanse Premier Vinyl and Aluminum Railing
As one of the leading manufacturers of residential and commercial railing products, Xpanse features enhancements like impressive durability, long-lasting color, low maintenance, an industry-leading warranty, and more. Their Premier Series rail products use Composicore®, a precision-engineered polymer containing no wood fibers or components, making it the most water-resistant core available. It won’t absorb moisture, rot, cup, bow, splinter, stain, warp, or decay, and will resist mold and fungus. They are also strong and durable, secure enough to keep you and your children safe. They can be easily cleaned, and won’t fade in the sun, as special UV inhibitors provide fade-resistant color and low-wearing color finish. We carry the Xpanse white railing kit in stock.


Treated Posts, Handrails, and Spindles
We carry pressure-treated and KDAT outdoor wood products, including spindles, and wooden handrails which have variations of spindle styles, turnings, lengths, and dimensions. They’re kiln dried and all machined after treatment, which also come paint-ready, with no drying necessary. If we don’t have something in stock we can order any styles or variations for your project.


Trex Aluminum and Composite Railings
Trex railings and components provide all the advantages of aluminum and composites—durability, color-fastness, rot-proof performance, and low maintenance, among others—with a selection of three exterior railing lines. Find the style you want from their wide range of colors, finishes, and style options. All this, plus easy configuration and maintenance, make Trex one of the most luxurious exterior railing systems around. We have the Trex Select® rail kit, white with black aluminum balusters, and Trex Transcend® in white (with 2”x2” white balusters) and vintage lantern (with 2”x2” black aluminum) in stock.


As with most of our product lines, if we don’t have exactly what you want in stock now, we can easily order just about any option for you. Start by evaluating your deck railings, and making an appointment to sit with one of our decking experts to make your vision a reality.

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Have any questions? Ask one of our experts!