What is The Best Material for Porch Railings? (8 Best Options)

If you’re looking to add a safety barrier to your porch or deck, and it’s high enough off the ground, a railing is excellent.

They can also do wonders for increasing your home’s curb appeal and value. There are many different types of railings you can choose from, each with its specific attributes.

Choosing the right style for your needs can be a challenge, but this guide will help!

What is The Best Material for Porch Railings

Thing to consider

If your porch could use a little sprucing up, you’re in luck! There are plenty of railing ideas to give your outdoor space a fresh new look. There’s something for everyone, from classic wood railings to modern metal designs. Here are a few things to consider when choosing the best porch railing material porch railing ideas to get you started.

  • Looks and Feel: What style of railing would you like to have in your space? Some materials will look elegant and more expensive, while others will be more modern and rustic. If you are looking for a material that has a classic look, then you should go with a wrought iron railing. If you are looking for a modern railing, you should consider a contemporary material such as aluminum or stainless steel.
  • Bending and Stretching: You need to decide whether or not you want a railing material that will withstand a great deal of stress or whether you want material that will resist a great deal of bending and stretching. Some of your options don’t offer much flexibility and will be very sturdy, while other materials are pliable and less resistant to force.
  • Budget and maintenance: The material for your deck railing is not just about aesthetics. The material you choose will have a major impact on your overall budget. Some materials cost more to install than others, so you have to be realistic about your budget. If you are working on a tight budget, you will have to think about using less expensive materials. Some materials are more expensive than others, and some of the most expensive materials (like composite decking) are also very strong and long-lasting.
  • The climate in your region: The climate where you live If you live in a region that has a lot of snowfall and icy conditions, then metal railings are likely the most appropriate material to choose. However, if you live in a region where you do not get a lot of snowfall, you may want to consider choosing a wooden railing. If you live in a region prone to wood-rotting insects, then wood is the best choice for you.

best porch railing materials

8 Best Porch Railing Materials to Spruce Up Your Outdoor Space

Deciding the material that you would like to use to build a porch railing will depend on plenty of different factors, including the style of the design that you have for the rail, what kind of budget that you are working with, and what kind of maintenance that you expect from the railing. Each type of material has unique properties that might make it a better fit for your particular application.

1. Aluminum Railing

Stanford 36 in. H x 8 ft. W Textured Black Aluminum Railing Kit

If you are looking for a low-maintenance railing for your outdoor area, aluminum might be a good choice. The metal is strong without being heavy and sturdy enough to support plenty of different materials. The material doesn’t rust, but it must be painted a few times a year to keep it looking new.

You can get treated aluminum or aluminum that is non-treated, which will vary in price. Aluminum is one of the most common materials used for deck railing due to its strength and low weight. Aluminum railing can be used in outdoor applications and is attractive.

CitySide 6-FT Aluminum Deck Railing Section, by Fiberon |Easy to Install Contractor Grade Railing (6’x36”) w/Premium Powder Coat Finish for All Weather Applications | DIY Friendly | Matte Black

2. Stainless steel railing

Stainless steel railing - What is the best Porch Railing Materials
Source: houzz.com

Many people prefer to use stainless steel for their railing because it is very strong and resistant to corrosion. Because stainless steel does not rust, it will be able to maintain its shine for quite some time without needing any special maintenance. It is also easy to cut and polish, so it is not very hard to work with. The biggest downside to using stainless steel is that it can be expensive, and not all of the styles will fit your design.

Steel DN Mate T316 Stainless Steel Left&Right Handed Thread Swage Lag Screws for Wood Post of 1/8" Deck Railing Kit, Cable Railing/Stair Deck Railing, DIY Baluster Hardware, Wrench Included (60 Packs)

3. Wrought Iron Railing

Wrought Iron Railing - Porch Railing Materials
Source: irongroup.by

Wrought iron is a really popular option for porch railings, and it is a material that has been used for over a century. It has a nice look, and it is one of the more affordable options. Wrought iron railings are also very easy to work with, and they are easy to customize to the specific needs of your project. In addition to being a very strong material, it is also very beautiful, which allows you to build a piece that is both stylish and functional.

You can choose from designs of just small, vertical, decorative pieces or choose a full-length railing. However, keep in mind that it is also rustproof, which means you might need to do some maintenance to it every once in a while.

SPACEEUP Step Handrail Fit for 4 or 5 Steps Wrought Iron Handrail for Outdoor Steps Matte Black Stair Railings with Installation Kit

4. Metal Cable Railing

white-aluminum-cable-porch-railingMetal cable is a great choice for making a porch railing due to its formability and extremely low maintenance requirements. Metal cable is easy to work with, making it a good choice for a DIY project. It also does not require any special tools to work with.

A pair of pliers for forming and a hacksaw for cutting is all you need. Because it requires almost no maintenance, a metal cable is also a good choice for an outdoor installation.

100 Pieces Stainless Steel Protector Sleeves, Cable Railing T316 Protector Sleeves, Suit 1/8, 5/32, 3/16 Inch Wire Rope, Rust Proof Decking Handed Handrail for Stair, Metal Post, Balustrade

5. Wood Railing

Wood porch railings materials
Source: front-porch-ideas-and-more.com

Wood is a classic material that has been used for building railings for a long time, and it is still the most common material that you will see used for this purpose. It is easy to work with, and there is a large variety of different types of wood that you can choose from, allowing you to match the wood to the surrounding materials easily. The best wood for this purpose is white oak.

This is a pretty sturdy material that is also very attractive. The untreated type of wood railings can certainly add a lot of beauty to the front of your home. However, you should know that you will need to treat the wood to keep it as beautiful as when it was first installed.

6. Glass Railing

tempered glass panels - porch railing materials
Source: front-porch-ideas-and-more.com

Glass railings have become very popular in recent years. They are sleek in design and look great in more modern homes. Glass is also a very strong material capable of withstanding plenty of impact without breaking. The reflectiveness of glass railings makes them a great choice if you are looking to add a little bit of interest to the appearance of your home with the railing.

Another great benefit to glass railings is how easy they are to clean. A glass railing is commonly used to embellish the look of an otherwise ordinary railing. The glass railing concept behind this particular railing is that they give the impression of seemingly being in the air, which makes them so popular. The great thing about glass railings is that they are reasonably priced and easy to install.

7. Vinyl RailingYardSmart® 73012418 Select Rail Square Bal Vinyl Railing, 6' x 36', White

Vinyl railing is a very popular product in many residential and commercial settings. This is mainly because it is easy to work with, looks very good, and is very affordable. Vinyl railing is made of PVC, a thermoplastic material that is generally a good choice for the budget-minded homeowner since they are the least expensive of all railing materials. Vinyl is a synthetic material available in a wide variety of styles and colors.

A vinyl railing is a great option in situations where weather conditions are likely to be wet or damp more often than not. It can withstand a lot of rain and moisture in the air, which makes it a great choice for porches with lots of rain.  Its adorable features enable a great option for tropical climates where it is likely to be much hotter than most of the surrounding areas.

8. Composite Railing

29.5 in. x 1 in. x .1875 in. Black Aluminum Silhouette Balusters (60 pack), Wood and Composite Deck Railing Compatible, Semigloss Finish, Wrought Iron Look

Composite railings are a fairly popular choice because they can be designed to look like just about any other type of railing that you might want. They are made up of different parts. One part looks like a standard wooden railing, and the other looks like a metal railing. Traditional styles are also made to look like several different types of materials, such as metal, stone, or iron.

It is a great option for those dealing with a budget or who need a railing that is going to require a minimal amount of maintenance compared to other options. These railings are made of different materials, including plastic and lumber, and they are often treated with a waterproofing material.

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Final Thoughts

There are many railing options available to give your porch a new look. Each option has its pros and cons, so it is important to research before deciding which material is best for you. Porch railings can be made from wood, aluminum, composite, or vinyl.

Wooden railings are the most popular choice for porches because they offer a classic look and feel. They can be stained or painted to match the rest of your home’s exterior. Wood railings are also strong and durable, but they require more maintenance than other materials.

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