The Best Material for Outdoor Railings

The Best Material for Outdoor Railings

Putting up railings outdoors comes with a great number of considerations. What’s safest? What looks good with with the exterior design of the building? What will stand up to the local weather? Pro Weld, the railing experts, are here to cover the basics of outdoor railings. We know a thing or two about how each railing material stands up to the weather. Let’s take a look.

Avoid Wood

Wooden railings are surprisingly common outdoors. That’s mostly just because wood is such an affordable material. A little paint makes a cheap product last a few years outdoors. The problem with wooden railings is that they won’t last. Rain, snow, and frequent wear and tear from use will make wooden railings deteriorate. The paint will start to curl and chip, leaving the wood beneath vulnerable to the elements. The elements won’t be kind.

The other thing about wooden railings is that each slat or dowel between the top and bottom of the railing is usually only secured with a nail or screw on either end. It’s so incredibly easy for these nails to come loose, leaving a big gap where a railing used to be. Taking the safety risks and the overall quality drop that wooden railings give to your home, it’s best to avoid them.

Consider Aesthetic

Now that we’ve moved away from wood, it’s time to consider how the material of your railings will affect your exterior. There is something to be said for exterior aesthetic. After all, the way your home looks from the outside is the first thing visitors, neighbors, and buyers will see. That’s why curb appeal is so important.

For red brick homes, wrought iron railings look truly amazing. The black iron really stands out boldly against the backdrop of red. It’s also a classic combination. Buyers and admirers alike will love this timeless color palette.

More modern-looking homes made out of lighter stone may look good with glass or stainless steel railings. It depends on the kind of vibe your exterior gives off. Are you looking for something gentle and beautiful, or something sleek and bold? Take a trip outside your house and imagine the different railing types before picking based on guesswork. Try looking up pictures of other homes with a similar design to yours and see what you think looks best on those.

Weather Resistance

When it comes down to outlasting the weather, Pro Weld offers a number of great railing solutions. Wrought iron and cast iron both do incredibly well against both rain and snow. You’ll find that both types of damp weather won’t do much in the way of wear on your iron railings.

However, if you’re looking at using stainless steel, it’s worth considering the effect of snow. The colder times of the year can lead to smooth, steel railings becoming sticky with cold. Like the timeless tale of licking a metal pole in winter, touching your skin to a cold, steel railing can lead to some discomfort. It’s all a matter of who’s using the railings and where they’re located.

No matter what choice you’re leaning towards, we’re always happy to get a call. Give us a call and we’ll take the time to answer all of your questions. We’re looking forward to helping you through your order and serving your home the way we do best.

Make Your Two-Story Home Family Friendly

Are you planning on getting a second-story home expansion? Maybe you’re designing a two-story custom home. No matter the case, if you’re making changes to a home that involve a second floor, you’re going to need railings. Check out how Pro Weld can assist in making your home family friendly.

Railing Types

Any simple railing can be made of wood. The thing about wooden railings is that they’re prone to breaking after a little while. This is especially true in houses with children. Kids falling against railings or trying to shove toys through the gaps can lead to broken railings. This not only poses a falling hazard, it makes it possible for your children to get injured on the broken wood.

Pro Weld offers a better alternative; buy metal railings. Buying metal railings means your railings will withstand more wear and tear than simple wooden ones. Not to mention, the railings can’t just break off when the wood gives out or a nail comes loose. Metal railings, whether they’re stainless steel or wrought iron, are welded together. A rambunctious child alone cannot damage that.

Luxury Railings

If you’re the kind of family that puts a lot of time and money into your home interior, you’ll love our wrought iron  and cast iron railings. Pro Weld’s iron railings can be made into exquisite designs, able to stand up to some of the toughest scrutiny. These railings look gorgeous inside more refined homes, making them safer and more beautiful.

From straight bars to swirling designs, you can get whatever your heart desires. We have iron railings for any kind of interior style. If you’re looking for something more sleek, take a peek at our stainless steel or glass railings instead. We really do have something for everyone.

Balcony Railings

With a second-story addition or a new two-story home build, there’s a good chance there will be balconies. Where there are balconies, there must be railings. Fortunately, Pro Weld has a number of different railing types that are great for outdoor use. 

Our iron railings are especially nice with brick exteriors. The black really stands out against the red or grey stone. If you like a luxurious touch to your home exterior, iron is the way to go. Order your favorite design and watch your home go up in resale value as your balconies are fixed with quality railings. 

Rooftops

Many homes have rooftop terraces. These terraces could also do with some better protection. Don’t settle for wooden railings when you could have metal or glass. Pro Weld specifically recommends glass railings for rooftop terraces. They make it easy to maintain your view from the roof, not obscuring the surroundings. Plus, the solid panels ensure kids and objects can’t fit through any spaces between rails.

If you have questions about the railings we have to offer here at Pro Weld, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help. 

5 Tips for Taking Care of Outdoor Wood Railings

If you have a deck, chances are you have railings around it. If not, it may be time to invest in installing some.

Railings serve as an essential purpose for the safety of those who use the deck. Since they are outdoors, it’s important that you continue to take care of them to maintain their structural integrity.

Keep your outdoor railings in top shape by using the following five tips.

Know the Type of Wood

Before doing anything, you need to know the kind of wood used to make the railings. What you do to clean one type wouldn’t necessarily work for another kind. Knowing the type of wood allows you to pick cleaning products that are meant to protect and seal that specific type.

Use Non-Harsh Cleaners

Certain cleaners are too strong to use on wood as they can strip the finish. With your railings, you want them looking like new for as long as possible. Try and stay away from detergent cleaners and go for non-detergent ones.

For a more heavy-duty clean that will protect the wood, look for cleaners that are meant for outdoor wood, and even better if you can find products that won’t harm the environment. If you can’t find any, non-detergent dish soap works fine. Water and white vinegar is a good combination for tough stains.

Apply an Oil or Sealant

To keep the wood shiny and looking like new, apply a sealant or protective coating to the railings. This step is what helps protect the wood from the harsh elements, especially when winter rolls around.

When applying a sealant, rub with the grain and ensure that you get into all the crevices in the wood as well. Allow the product to soak into the wood before wiping any excess product off with a clean rag.

Inspect for Wood

You should regularly inspect the railings to see if any nails are sticking out, slivers to remove, or if there are any broken pieces. For any nails sticking out, you should immediately drive them back in to prevent any snagging.

If any parts of the railing are damaged, it could put the whole railing in jeopardy of falling apart, and that is not something you want to find out if someone is leaning against it.

Stain the Railings

Even a good stain will fade after a while as it sits outside. Between the sun, rain, cold, and snow, at some point, you’ll need to restain the railings. To keep the railing looking like new, adding a fresh stain every five years is a good guideline to follow. When that time comes, stain the railings as you stain the deck to maintain the same colour and look.

Get the most out of your railing by taking care of it and having a maintenance routine. Even as simple as cleaning the railings regularly will help maintain the health of the wood so that you’re left with a strong and healthy railing.

Is Your Fence in Need of Repairs? 4 Warning Signs to Watch For

If you look around your neighbourhood, chances are the majority of fences you see are made from wood. That is because wood is an excellent resource for building fences. It is quite often affordable, easy to work with, and very reliable.

With most things that are outside, after a while, they will need repairing and even replacing. Fences are no exception. Even if you have a brick or aluminum fence, at some point you’ll need to fix it.

Since wood fences are the more popular option, we’re going to look at four warning signs that say you need to repair your wooden fence.

Rotting

Rotting is a common indicator that your fence is on its last life, or at least that particular board. If you notice rotting spots on your fence, it’s something you want to address right away. Over time, that rot can cause your fence to warp and damage the structural integrity. As the rot deteriorates the fence, it also loses the look you were initially going for.

If you find only a few boards that have rot, you likely can get away with repairing only those boards. However, if the rot spreads, it probably has weakened the fence to the point of replacing the whole thing.

Insect Damage

Can you spot tiny holes in your fence? That could be a sign of insect damage. Many insects will burrow and eat away at wood, and if left untreated, can cause significant damage to your fence. As with rotting, inspect the whole fence to see where all the infested spots are. If it’s spread too far, you’ll likely have to replace the fence instead of repairing it.

For insect damage, you may want to further investigate as to where the infestation is coming from. You wouldn’t want to replace only to have the bugs return.

Splintered Boards

Splintering is another good indicator that it’s time to repair your fence. The problematic thing with splintering boards is that it can be difficult to determine if you need to simply repair certain boards, or if the whole structure is weakened.

If the fence is still standing upright even though there are splintered boards, you likely can get away with repairing only what is needed.

Sagging

If you notice that your fence isn’t standing up straight anymore, maybe it’s starting to warp or has a lean to it, that is a sure sign that your fence requires your attention. Sagging can come from the weather or from age.

The important thing to remember with a sagging fence is to determine what is causing it to sag. If the boards are rotting and making the fence sag, the structural integrity of the fence could be damaged, making the fence quite dangerous.

After building a fence, it’s essential that you spend time taking care of it. Fences provide privacy around the property. However, if you notice one of these signs and don’t act on repairing your fence, it soon becomes dangerous. A falling fence could seriously harm someone.

If you’re unsure whether or not to replace or repair your fence, call a professional contractor to help come up with a plan for you.

6 Features in Your Home Not to Forget About

Do you ever walk through your home and think of a few things you wish you did differently? Maybe you bought an existing house and felt a different layout would be better, or you wish you would have picked a different colour for the living room?

There ends up being at least one feature in our houses that we wish we could easily change. If you’re in the process of renovating or building a new house, we have six features in your home not to forget about.

Number of Outlets

Outlets seem like such a small thing in the grand scheme of the house that we tend to forget about them. The thing is though, forgetting about the outlets will lead to frustration down the road.

When installing outlets, put them in spots that you know you’ll use them. Have one on either side of where you plan to put your bed. Have multiple outlets in different locations in the living room. Don’t forget about outlets in the garage and outside your house too.

Indoor and Outdoor Railings

Railings are another thing that can be an afterthought, but shouldn’t be. Having a boring railing on a unique and exciting staircase will only bring down the effect it has. The colour and style of the railings can help finish off a room and give the staircase the pop it needs.

Storage Space

It’s not that we forget about storage space, rather, it’s that we underestimate how much we’ll need. Once you move into your new home and start unpacking, you’ll soon realize whether or not you have enough storage.

When planning out your house, have storage space at the top of your list. You can get creative with how you add it, like building shelves into the wall.

Exhaust Fans

By now, we know how important it is to control the humidity levels in your home. Having excess moisture in the air can lead to mould growth, and mould can cause serious harm to your health.

Having exhaust fans in your home will help control the humidity and circulate the air. Install them in your bathroom where there is likely to be the most amount of moisture.

Pet Accommodations

Pets are family, right? If you have a furry friend or are planning to get one, it’s easy to forget about certain pet items until you need them at that moment. More and more pet owners, though, are building their pet accommodations right into their house. Integrated food and water dishes that pull out from a cabinet, an addition the master bedroom for the puppy to sleep on, and having a dog wash station, they may sound silly, but they keep all of your pet supplies organized and tidy.

Indoor Plants

If you don’t have any indoor plants, you should invest in some. Adding greenery to your home not only adds a pop of colour, but real plants offer many health benefits as well. Living plants produce oxygen while removing carbon dioxide from the air. We’re left with fresh and healthy air.

How to Build the Perfect Deck

Decks are one of the best hang out spots on the property. Especially during the warm summer evenings, gathering with friends to relax on the deck is the best way to finish off the day.

There’s a difference, though, between lounging and relaxing on a deck built for just that, or hanging out on a piece of wood that looks like it’s going to fall apart. As much as you want the deck to be the feature piece in your backyard, safety should also be of top priority.

If you’re planning on building your house a deck this summer, we have a few tips that will help you out.

Get the Permits

Before you even begin planning out your deck, you need to ensure you have the proper permits from your community. You wouldn’t want to start building, only to find out that you don’t have the right permit and you have to start over.

Go through the bylaws of your municipality to see what type of setbacks you could face. Knowing any limitations will help you come up with a plan that won’t get shot down by the municipality.

Design the Layout on Paper

Trying to build a deck from an image in your mind is next to impossible, especially if you have people helping you. Make things easier on you and design your layout on paper first. That way, you’ll have an idea of what things will look like, and you can show it to people helping you, so everyone is on the same page.

Build a Strong Foundation

You want to prevent as much shifting as possible. Living in Canada, the ground is always freezing and thawing out. The change in temperature can cause structures to shift. If not built properly, that shifting can damage the structure.

If you’re unsure of the best solution for a solid foundation, it’s best to hire someone to do this part for you.

Don’t Push Screws too Deep

It’s important to pay attention to how far you push the screws into the deck. You need to go far enough that it connects that materials together. However, going too deep into the wood, and you’ll create a little crevice that is perfect for holding water.

Don’t Forget About the Railings

We know that railings are an essential safety feature for the deck. However, that doesn’t mean you should neglect the style of railings you install. You have many options of unique and stylish railings to match the deck you’re building, all while being sturdy and safe.

Think About the Surface Material

Depending on where you live in the country, that may help you decide on the material you use for the deck surface. If you want to go natural, then stay away from pressure treated wood. Cedarwood is a popular option for a natural surface, but it does come with a price tag. Recycled plastic composite boards are becoming more popular. They’re made to look like real wood, but are made out of recycled plastic. This type is very durable and has an extremely long lifespan. Lastly, there’s the option of tropical wood, but many don’t like this option as it makes a big dent in the rainforests.

The Importance of Railings in a Home

Whether you’re building a new home, renovating an existing one, or planning to sell your house, do you have railings installed in the appropriate areas of the home? If not, you may want to consider adding some in.

Not only do railings add additional safety to your property, but in many cases, they are mandatory. Depending on the location, the size of the stairs, and the height, you may be required to install handrailings for additional support.

The importance of railings cannot be understated. Although they can add an aesthetic appeal to the area they are in, the primary purpose of adding railings is for safety.

Consider the following four reasons as to why railings are crucial for every property.

Support When on the Stairs

Imagine walking down a set of stairs and missing a step. Your first instinct is likely to grab onto something, like a railing, to stop you from falling. If that railing wasn’t there, or it broke away from the wall due to improper installation, you would likely fall down the stairs. There is a good chance you would seriously injure yourself, or even worse.

Railings along staircases add another security level of support for everyone who uses them. It’s easy to miss a step or step on the stairs. Without that railing, instead of losing your breath from a quick scare, you could fall down the whole staircase.

Prevent Falls from Upper Levels

If you have a house with a second level that looks over the main floor, you should have a railing along the open area. Having the floor extend over the main floor so that you can look down, adds a unique look to the house. Many like having that extra space as a reading or lounging area, or a place to showcase decorations.

Adding a railing will help prevent someone from falling off of the second floor. No matter how high the next level of the house is, someone falling from it could still seriously injure him or herself. The railing stops you from going too far.

Prevent Slipping into Pools

Having a railing around an open pool will help prevent people from slipping into the pool, especially children. Many enjoy the benefits of having a pool outside. Without that railing though, a child could easily walk too close to the water, slip and fall in. If no one is around when this happens, the consequences could be dire.

Adding a railing around the pool, almost like a fence, marks where you need to be extra cautious. It prevents kids from running too close to the water, and if someone slipped on the wet surface, they would have something to hold on to.

Secure a Deck

Another common place for a railing is a deck, and you should have a railing around the perimeter of it if you don’t already. A deck is typically off the ground, enough that if someone stepped on the edge and fell, he or she could get hurt.

Not only will that railing add an aesthetic element to the area, but it provides safety to those who use the deck.

We cannot state enough the importance of having railings in the right places of your property. If you’re unsure if you should install a railing or not, Railings Toronto will help you out.

Why Railings are a Worthy Investment for Any Home in 2018

Railings

Perhaps it’s not something that comes up right away when you think about ways to enhance the value of your home but maybe it should. We’re talking about installing metal railings at various locations around the property. Metal handrails – whether steel, aluminum or wrought iron – go a long way toward enhancing the aesthetics of your home both inside and out and also play an important role in making your home safer for everyone. Below we’re going to look at just some or the reasons that installing metal rails, balustrades, banisters and fencing in and around the home is an idea whose time has come in 2018.

Why it Makes Sense to Install Metal Railings in Your Home

Metal handrails whether on the main staircase or around the deck make a lot of sense from both aesthetic and practical perspectives. Below we’ll look at a few of the reasons you should consider metal handrails for your home.

  • Safety – One of the biggest reasons to consider metal over wood or vinyl is safety. When properly installed metal handrails will be able to absorb a heavier load than wood, vinyl or glass, which is important if there are kids in the house or even if you entertain a lot. If your child or guest accidently falls against a wooden banister it may or may not be able to stop them from crashing through. With wrought iron or steel everyone will emerge safe and sound.
  • Beauty – Metal has been used in and around the home for centuries. Wrought iron fences built 200 years ago can still be seen in some of the older neighbourhoods of North America. They’ve never been replaced because they have a timeless appeal that is just as strong today as it was when they were installed and that is not going to change any time soon. So if you want to enhance the curb appeal of your home, consider metal fencing or handrails.
  • Low maintenance durability – Metal, regardless of what kind, is not going to attract termites or other pests and you won’t have to take any extraordinary steps to protect it from the elements, even if it’s outside. In fact there’s a good chance your metal handrails will outlast the house itself and will be used by some enterprising builder in the future to adorn their new abode. All you really need to do is keep them clean and keep an eye out for corrosion (if they’re outdoors).

Metal railings are one of the most cost-effective enhancements you can make to your home this year. But they’re more than just a bottom line investment. They’re also an investment in the safety of your family and friends, the overall look and experience of the home (including the property around the house) and they never need any sort of special attention to maintain their timeless good looks and practical effectiveness. Talk to the experts at Pro Weld about new metal handrails for your home.

5 Trends in the Railings World for 2017

Railings in Toronto For the most part people take railings for granted; until they see one that’s juuust a bit different from anything they’ve seen before. Then their ears prick up, their eyes widen a bit and their imagination is engaged. An interesting railing can really bring an interior to life or elevate an ordinary deck to something extraordinary. In this post we’re going to look at some railing trends that we’ve sniffed out and that we believe will influence homeowner tastes in the coming year.

Where Railings in Toronto are Headed in the New Year

Over the past 20 years or so just about every aspect of home design has been rethought. Railings have benefitted from this reappraisal of interior design and leading-edge ideas about the role of the railing have led to some astonishing results. Here are 5 railing trends we see playing out in 2017.

  1. Dazzling wrought iron work: Say “wrought iron” to most people and they think of colonial mansions or fencing around civic green spaces. But wrought iron has made significant inroads on the domestic railing front in recent years and we don’t see that trend slowing down in 2017. Today wrought iron railings in Toronto bear little resemblance to their colonial forebears with some walking the razor’s edge between functional object and art object.
  1. Stainless steel: Stainless steel as a railing material has been popular in commercial settings for many years but we believe it’s due for a breakout residential year in 2017. Postmodern design rules the architectural landscape today and at its heart is the notion of appropriation. Stainless steel railings in a home are a perfect expression of that ethos.
  1. Wire railings: Wire railings, sometimes called “cable railings” manage to exude both strength and fragility at the same time and they’ll be big in 2017. They’re ideal for contemporary settings but also work well strung between wooden balustrades on the deck. “Wire” railings are not always wire either. Sometimes they’re thin tubes of stainless or some other metal.
  1. Those other metals: Brass, aluminum, bronze and even copper are finding their way into the design of railings in Toronto in 2017. The look will be light and airy and provide subtle ‘highlights’ to many interior and exterior decors as well as take on the role of motif that informs the larger design scheme.
  1. The return of wood: While it’s unlikely wood will reclaim the market share it enjoyed 50 years ago we see more people taking an interest in wooden handrails than in previous years. Perhaps it’s a matter of “everything old is new again” or maybe it’s just that homeowners are pining for a material that brings them back into closer contact with the natural world.

Railings in Toronto have emerged from the periphery of interior design to assume a central role in both new home design as well as renovations and remodels of every type. If you’d like to discuss these or other railing designs and concepts, or would like a quote for your upcoming project give us a call on (905) 669-8633.

The 4 Most Important Things to Know When Buying Railings

railings torontoWhether you are interested in railings for decorative purposes, security purposes or both, there are several different types from which to choose. In this short article, we are going to take a look at the four most important factors to consider when making your choice. After reading, hopefully you will have a better idea which type will be most suitable for your needs.

Choosing the Right Railings for Your Property

Take a look at each point below and consider how it applies to your property and your particular needs. Some may of course be more relevant to you than others.

  1. Appearance – For those with period properties or for homeowners who simply prefer a more decorative appearance, wrought iron is an excellent choice. Modern casting techniques make cast iron a reasonable alternative nowadays but if you want an authentic look for an older property, wrought iron is the way to go.
  2. Strength – Wrought or cast iron are both very strong materials, making them suitable for applications where security is a concern. Aluminum railings, being considerably lighter and more flexible, may not be the best choice if security is your primary concern.
  3. Maintenance – If you are looking for a maintenance-free option, aluminum is almost certainly your best option. High quality aluminum fixtures will not rust and will never need to be painted in order to keep them looking good. Wrought and cast iron, while capable of lasting for centuries when properly cared for, will require a little more in the way of regular maintenance to keep them in good condition.
  4. Cost – The cost differential between the different types of materials from which you can choose may actually be less than you imagined but if price is your most important consideration, aluminum is normally the cheapest option out of the three. Cast iron is generally a little less expensive than wrought, owing to the different manufacturing processes involved.

As a leading manufacturer of railings made from wrought iron, cast iron and aluminum, we are ideally place to help you make the best choice for your home and your specific requirements. If you would like any help or advice on the matter therefore, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us to discuss your requirements in detail. We will be delighted to provide you with all the information you need, along with comprehensive quotations for each different option.