Ensuring Balcony Railing Safety: Materials, Construction, & Maintenance Tips

Balcony railings are an essential safety feature designed to protect people from falling from great heights. Yet thin railings have a delicate appearance that can create the illusion of being too frail to stand up to the job. Fortunately, balcony railings are incredibly safe, and understanding how contractors can create safe but intricate designs may help you feel better about including them in your new building or home remodeling plans.

Look for Signs of High-Quality Construction

The first thing you should know is that balcony railings are only as safe as the contractor makes them. Working with an experienced fencing and railing company is critical for knowing the safeguard you’ve placed around the balcony will prevent people from being able to break through the barrier. 

Balcony railings should be built using high-quality materials, such as wrought iron fencing metal. San Diego County homeowners should also make sure their contractors use sturdy hardware to secure the fencing to the balcony. The railing should also be free of dents, cracks, and other types of damage that could make them weak.

Choose the Right Material for the Environment

Balcony railings come in various materials that include wood and metal, which you can choose according to your preference for style and durability. Typically, you’ll work with a home designer to decide on the material, and a reputable contractor always considers the overall environment before suggesting which type he or she believes is best. For instance, you might choose to use a metal railing around an outdoor balcony. Meanwhile, wood may suffice for indoor areas where exposure to weather elements isn’t a concern.

Check the Spacing between Railings

The biggest safety issue with railings is making sure they don’t have spaces that are large enough for small children to fall through or get their heads stuck inside. Modern building codes typically recommend balcony railings shouldn’t have gaps larger than four inches to prevent these types of accidents. If you live in or spend time in an older building, it’s important to replace any railings that might have been built before the current regulations took effect.

Inspect Railings Regularly for Damage

As with any type of building element, there’s always a chance the railings could sustain damage. Both metal and wood railings should last for many years with proper care. But you might notice issues such as loose slats that need to be fixed right away. You can also preserve the life of the railings by avoiding putting pressure on the balcony’s barrier.

Practice Proper Stair & Balcony Safety

As a final note, you can play a role in increasing safety on your balcony. Avoid putting furniture close to the railing where a child might use it to climb up to the top. You may also need to place secure latches on the doors and windows that lead to the balcony to prevent pets and kids from gaining access without supervision. Teaching children not to climb balcony railings and ensuring people avoid leaning on the rails are additional safeguards you can take to prevent accidents in your favorite outdoor space.

Prioritize safety in your outdoor living space by taking proactive steps to secure your balcony. Don’t compromise on the safety of your loved ones—empower yourself with knowledge to make informed decisions. Whether you’re planning a new build or remodeling, the fencing and railing experts from Fred’s Fencing will guide you in creating a secure and stylish outdoor space with the finest handcrafted railings. San Diego County homeowners who need help turning their visions into reality can get started today by calling one of our friendly team members.

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