When comparing the benefits of aluminum deck railings to the composite type, a few factors need to be considered. Both materials have their pros and cons. For example, aluminum railings are more durable, while composites tend to be a little more economical. In this article, we’ll dive into the differences and help shed some light on which one would be best for you.

Aluminum Deck Railing

Aluminum deck railings are an affordable option, though installation needs to be considered. There are many factors that can affect the overall cost for installation.   These include: complexity of the installation, DIY vs hiring a professional contractor, and which specific materials or styles are chosen.   What’s really great about choosing aluminum deck railings is that they require little to no maintenance, making their lifetime cost much much lower than using wood. 

Composite Railing

Composite railings are also an affordable option and installation factors are pretty much on par with aluminum railing installation. Composite railings are available in “cheaper” qualities, which can save you money, but cost you more in the long run.   They are available in a wider range of colors though, which can suit your specific aesthetic needs a little better. A slight con with composite railings that that oftentimes, manufacturers and installers offer shorter term warranties.

Maintenance

Aluminum deck Railing Maintenance

Aluminum railings are given a protective coating, sometimes referred to as a “powder coat,” which extends the lifetime of the product. It is also the reason why they are said to be maintenance-free.   Keep in mind that basic levels of maintenance are required to keep the aluminum material looking its best. Keep rails debris-free and occasionally, using mild cleaners, wipe them down.   Foll0w your instruction guidelines and you’ll have great looking railings for years to come. Should your powder coat finish get scratched, you can contact us for a touch up!  

Composite Railings Maintenance

Different types of low-maintenance composite deck railing options will require slightly different levels of maintenance. Overall, the maintenance required for composite railing is quite low. Use gentle soaps to occasionally scrub your railing with a soft bristle brush and thoroughly rinse off any chemicals used.   When comparing composite to wood railings, you’ll find composites have the advantage in most ways. However, it’s worth noting that, just like aluminum railing, the manufacturer is the authority in the best ways to keep their composite products clean.

Lifespan and Durability

The average lifespan of aluminum deck railings is hard to say due to it’s very durable properties. In some cases, with very light upkeep, your railings can last a lifetime. It’s important to follow your manufacturer’s guidelines on your warranty in order to keep it valid.   Though both aluminum deck and composite railings offer a great deal of benefits, aluminum deck railings often offer better protection against scratches and dents, and therefore need much less maintenance in the long run.   Thinking about installing an aluminum railing? Get in touch with us for a consultation!