Column: Don’t go off the (pine deck) rails


Commentary by Bill Bernard

Well used pressure-treated pine decks and railings seem to be everywhere. Pressure-treated pine has long been the workhorse material of choice for decades. When properly maintained, the pressure-treated materials can last for years and years. A well-built railing constructed of pressure-treated materials presents a very stout sense of enclosure. This type of railing often acts as a barrier to your field of view. Even with proper care, these decks and railings will ultimately show signs of wear and need to be replaced. When that time comes, many of our homeowners opt for materials that require less maintenance. More often than not, they also want to open up view to the landscape beyond.

That’s when we turn to composite decking and aluminum railing systems. The composite decking materials available today come in a variety of colors. In the project pictured here, we opted for a decking color that is similar to the original deck color. For the railing, however, we selected a material and color that are vastly different from the existing. The posts of new railing system are wrapped with composite sleeves, and the railings are made of aluminum. We selected a dark color to contrast with the decking color. The thin profile of the aluminum material allows for views to the additional patios and landscaping beyond.

Stay home, be moved.