Learning About Deck Railing Styles

Installing Deck Railing Easily

Installing your deck may sound like a complicated affair, but it’s easier than you think with easy to follow directions. Sometimes, the most difficult parts of making a deck are choosing from the different deck railing styles available today. If you’re not the DIY type of person or don’t have the correct tools and equipment, you may want to hire a deck contractor or get help from a friend experienced in installing a deck. However, with good directions, installing a deck is not that complicated.

Installing Deck Railings

Deck railings serve two purposes: to provide safety for your family and friends and to bring beauty to your deck and home. They are the most visible part of your deck so you want them to be attractive. They also need to meet the requirements set by the law involving the distance (maximum 4 inches) as well as height requirements (between 36 and 42 inches). When installing your deck railings, you’ll find many different styles and designs available. If you have the correct tools and skills, you can have your deck railing installed in a couple of days.

  Baluster  Spacing and Installation

When installing your  balusters , it’s important that you space them evenly on your deck. Assuming the distance between two posts is 60 inches, your  baluster  width is 2″ and the required spacing between the two  balusters  is 4″, you add 4″ to the 2″ to get a total of 6″. Divide 60″ by 6″ and you get 10. This is the total number of  balusters  that you’ll need for your deck railing. To figure out the exact spacing, multiply 10 (number of  balusters  needed) by the width of each  baluster  (10X2=20). Subtract this figure from the distance between posts (60-20=40). Divide this number by the number of spacing plus one (10+1=11 then 40/11=3.64 inches). It’s actually easier than it seems, especially if you have basic math skills and a tape measure.

Working with Railing Posts

Installing the rail posts includes measuring the distance required for the posts and cutting them with a circular saw or table saw the required length, making sure to cut a 45-degree bevel on the outside bottom of the post. Be sure the post is flush against the joist and drill two holes through the post and the joist then secure them together with a 5-inch long carriage bolt. The  balusters  need to be cut from 2X2 stock. Clamp together 6 pieces and cut them all at the same time. Install the top and bottom rails 2″ thick and 4 inches wide spaced the correct distance apart. Measure both rails for fixing the  balusters . Nail them in place, making sure the nails are not too big so they don’t splinter the wood. Stand back and admire your work.