When Is The Right Time to Replace Your Deck Railing?
February 17, 2021
Categories -Decking And Railing
Your deck railing is an important support for your house. It helps protect the members of your family from an accident. Therefore, the structural wholeness of your deck railing must be ensured. It is the one thing you should check frequently. Whether your deck railing is wooden or metallic, regular inspection is required to make sure that it is not shaking. You cannot rely on your deck railing if it is shaking. Check to see if the faults in the deck railing are something that can be repaired; if not, then it may be time for you to replace it. Poke the railing to see how steady it is. If it no longer provides the essential support that it should, it is dangerous to continue using it. If your deck railing is unstable, it might need a replacement. But there are other factors that may be a pointer to the fact that you need to replace your deck railing. Those factors that indicate that you need to replace your deck railing are what we will be elaborating on in this guide.
Signs That Your Deck Railing Needs to Be Replaced
The deck railing does not have a fixed service life. This makes it difficult for you to know when a replacement is required. The lifespan of a railing is dependent on a whole lot of factors. These factors can make some last indefinitely, while others will last for just about ten years. In all, maintenance is the key for your deck railing to last long. Although deck railings are prone to deterioration, proper maintenance can help sustain them for a long while. To maintain your deck railings, you will need to perform regular checks, coating, and cleaning. There are times when your deck railings need replacement. But how do you know when the time is right for a replacement? Below are some indicators to help you identify when you need to replace your deck railing.
1. When the deck railing is unstable
The primary purpose of a deck railing is to prevent people, pets, and objects from falling off the stairs, balconies, and decks. If your deck railing does not stop any of these from happening, then it needs a replacement. As soon as your deck becomes shaky, it is an indication that its fasteners are getting loose. Sometimes, it could be more than just this; the damage could be more extensive. You should inspect the deck railing to find out if there is an issue with rust or rot. If you notice any of these, a replacement is probably needed. Securing your deck railing is a vital safety feature, especially if your deck is at an elevation.
2. When you find rotted wood
Inspect the posts, beams, and boards around your deck. If you notice any soft spot or if the paint is peeling off already, then you have a potential structural problem. This problem could be a result of pest or moisture, leading to sawdust beneath your railing or rot in the railings themselves. Finding rotted wood in your deck railing is a sign that it may need replacement. If only a small portion of the board is affected, you can replace just the affected boards. But if the rot is widespread, you may need to do a complete replacement.
3. When connections become rusty
Checks should be carried out not just on the material of your deck railing alone, but on the railing hardware also. The hardware includes all supporting brackets, washers, and screws. They ensure that the rail is attached and properly fixed. However, harsh environmental conditions can cause these materials to rust. If this rust penetrates the inner levels of the material, the hardware can be severely weakened. This weakening will make your deck railing vulnerable to snapping and breaking. In some instances, this can be fixed, but there are other times when it may need complete replacement.
4. When you observe cracks and warping in the deck material
As you closely inspect the deck railing material, pay attention to cracks, splinter, or warping of the material. This issue is mostly seen in the wooden deck railing. The structural integrity of your deck railing declines as soon as a material warps or cracks. As a result of the cracking and warping of your deck materials, it may not be able to offer the protection and support it should. So, when you observe that your deck materials are cracking or warping, it may be an indication that your deck railing needs replacement.
5. When you observe a loose and wiggling floorboards
Deck wiggling is never a good sign. If the entire structure seems unstable or if you notice a loose floorboard, there probably is a problem somewhere, and you need to investigate further. A loose floorboard can become a safety hazard. It can cause you to stumble and hurt yourself. Rot, pest, or water damage may be the cause of your floorboard bowing. If you detect any wobbly boards while walking across your deck, then a replacement should be made. If you have just a couple of loose boards, you can repair the boards, but if the whole boards seem shaky, a complete replacement of the deck railing may be needed.
As a homeowner, you should inspect your deck railing from time to time. This sort of inspection will guarantee the safety of your deck railing. Also, you will get to notice the early signs that are pointers to when you need to replace your deck railing. Probing and knowing the root cause of particular damage to your deck railing will help you identify the line of action to take. It will also help you to know what you need to do to avoid a reoccurrence. Once you notice the signs that have been mentioned above, know that your deck railing needs a replacement. To prevent any form of accident, don't hesitate to replace your deck railings when it is time for you to do so.