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Friday, December 21, 2018

DIY Glass Railings: Installing a Glass Railing on Your Deck Is Easy

I think glass is one of the best ways to make any deck immediately elegant. Glass gives a touch of simple style to any style of deck and allows the natural beauty of the outdoors to take center stage. I really love a glass railing for a beachside property, giving you unobstructed views of the ocean. Glass also looks surprisingly good on the deck of a rustic cabin with mountainside views.

But if you’re reading this, you’re probably one of the many homeowners who are hesitant about trying glass railings because they seem fragile and difficult to install without the help of a professional. But the good news is, glass railings can be easy to DIY if you choose a quality railing system. It helps to know how to choose a good manufacturer, and what your basic choices are when it comes to the types of glass railing out there.

Types of Glass Railings

If you’re thinking about installing your own glass railing system, there are lots of different styles out there to pick from. The style of the glass--like clear vs. frosted--is one consideration. If you plan to install your own railing, though, your main issue will likely be how difficult it is to install. That’s why you should think about whether you want a glass railing system with or without rails. Here’s why:

  • Glass railing without rails: This type of glass railing can either come with posts or may be constructed solely out of structural glass. While this type of glass railing may provide almost seamless window views for your deck, it also tends to be more laborious to install (and to order). If you choose to install this type of railing yourself, you’ll need to take careful measurements of the deck perimeter in order to calculate how many glass panels will be needed and exactly how big they will be, as the manufacturer will cut the glass to your specifications. Support is also minimal and requires that the glass itself carries much of the load.
  • Glass railing with rails: This type of glass railing uses either a glass panel or glass balusters that are installed between top and bottom rails. This type of railing may break up visibility more than systems without rails, but tends to be much easier to install and can be more structurally sound. Some manufacturers even make a slide-in system in which glass balusters simply drop into pre-slotted rails, making installation extremely simple and fast.

Choosing a Glass Railing System That Is Easy to Install

Even if you do a lot of building projects around your home or yard, you probably don’t work a lot with glass (I know I don’t!) which is part of what makes installing glass railings intimidating. These systems generally do require more know-how and attention to detail than wood or metal railing systems, but it all depends on the manufacturer. Innovative designs for glass railings from a company dedicated to quality and to making products designed with the end-user in mind can make the installation process smooth and easy. That’s why it’s important to look for the following when choosing a glass railing system to install yourself:

  • Clear instructions: No pun intended, the instructions for installing your glass railing should be clear and concise. Look for a manufacturer that has not only easy to understand instructions, but also gives you a list of all the tools you will need, as well as a clearly labeled parts list. A quality manufacturer will also include assembly drawings with the product and on their website.
  • Innovative assembly:.The best manufacturers will have pre-assembled or easy to assemble pieces such as easy to use brackets for attaching rails to posts. You should also look for glass railings that don’t require you to calculate the length of each panel for the manufacturer,
  • Customer assistance: Most importantly, your DIY glass railing system should come from a manufacturer that has a user-friendly website, as well as contact information so you can ask a knowledgeable professional all your installation questions either through email or over the phone.

 Installing a glass railing can add a lot of character to a deck and bring a bit of personal style outdoors as well, giving a subtle, elegant feel to your outdoor space. It’s also ideal for those with children and animals who want security as well as an unobstructed view. The best part is that you can install a beautiful glass railing yourself with little effort: The key is to find a trusted manufacturer with carefully designed railing systems.

If you are looking for a quality railing manufacturer that can make installing your own glass railing system a snap, Fortress Building Products has the glass railing options you are looking for. Their Pure View glass panels and Pure View glass balusters are easy to install and have minimal rail profiles for almost completely unobstructed views. And if your new railing makes you decide to upgrade your deck as well, take a look at Fortress Building Products’ other lines of innovative products. They have all the decking, fencing, and decorative hardware you need to make your outdoor space your personal oasis.


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