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Amp Up Your Property With Columns & Railings
Whether it’s house columns or porch railings, they enhance the appearance of porches and backyards in many homes around the Greater Toronto Area. In addition to aesthetic styling, they provide a durable structure for you to enjoy your outdoor living dreams for years to come. Stair railings inside and outside the house add stability and security to your stairs.
Columns and railings are available in a variety of materials and styles. Stand-alone structures like Pergolas also feature columns. Here is a look at a few aspects of columns and railings that will help you upgrade the look of your property.
Choosing the Perfect Columns
Whether they are purely functional or they amp up the aesthetic appeal of your home, house columns drive up the value of your property. But not all house columns are suitable for your home. You have to take into consideration the type of house, exterior color, and finish before you proceed to have house columns installed.
Take into account the surroundings of the space you want the house columns to be installed, so that they are noticeable. For example, outdoor spaces would be more suitable for thicker house columns while indoor spaces normally have space for thinner house columns.
Next, consider how plain or ornate you want the columns to be. Again, consider the surrounding space. For example, overly ornate house columns with intricate designs would look out of place in an interior with simple indoor decor.
Finally, choose the house column material which best suits your climate conditions. In the past, house columns were made of stones. Now, they are made of different materials. PVC house columns are durable, economical, and easy to install. Aluminum house columns are lightweight and strong, they can bear loads up to 43,000 pounds. Fiberglass house columns have a Class A fire rating and add strength without the bulky appearance. Polymer stone house columns have a natural stone appearance and are lighter than traditional stone columns. But, they have the strength to bear the same load.
Column Architectural Styles
House columns are available in five classic architectural styles. These timeless architectural styles have adorned all kinds of homes throughout the ages.
Doric columns are short and heavy pillars with a round capital. They are fluted along the shaft.
Ionic columns are slender and fluted pillars with a large base. They have scrolled capitals.
Corinthian columns also have slender and fluted shafts. But, they have elaborate carvings on the capital.
Tuscan columns have a simple design. The shaft is unfluted with a plain base. It has the most uncomplicated column design.
Composite columns are a mixture of Ionic and Corinthian styles. They feature a slender and fluted shaft. The capital is scrolled with elaborate carvings.
Which Column Style Suits You?
Columns add a lot of elegance to your home. In addition to their structural support, some house columns represent architectural history while others add modern style. You can choose Doric or Tuscan columns if you prefer simplicity or you can choose composite style columns for elaborate design.
Most modern house columns are made of PVC, aluminum, fiberglass, or polymer stone. The budget also determines the style and material of house columns. If you are on a budget, and your objective is to provide quality structural support around the property, then modern house columns are the best choice. But if you don’t want to compromise on exceptional aesthetics and want structural support, then the old school architectural columns are the right choice for you.
Choosing the Perfect Railings
Every house has stairs to provide safe access to different floors throughout. Stair railings not only complete the look of the stairs but also provide safe and secure passage through the stairs. Front porches and backyard decks also have railings for protection against falls as decks and porches are usually elevated. This is essential for families with small children. Alongside house columns, porch railings add to the aesthetics at the entrance.
Like house columns, indoor and outdoor railings have to be matched with the colour, details, and decor around the property for that perfect look. If you prefer a simple design, you may want stair railings that display the same qualities. If your home has an architectural design aspect to it, you may want custom-made stair railings to match your taste. Whichever stair railing you choose, please be sure to check the local building codes for railing height.
Furthermore, some railings require more maintenance than others. For example, aluminum stair railings require less maintenance than iron stair railings.
Types of Railings
Choose the railings depending on where you need them.
Outdoor railings are used on porches, decks, balconies, and outdoor patios. Any platform having an elevation of 30 inches or more from the surface should have a railing height of a minimum of 36 inches. Spacing between the bottom rail and the surface should not exceed 4 inches. Some of the railings used outdoors are:
Vinyl railings: They are made of galvanized steel and reinforced with vinyl. They require low maintenance.
Cable railing: They offer a simple design and have an uncomplicated look. They are stylish and offer unobstructed views of nature and surroundings.
Aluminum railing: They are made of thick aluminum with a powder coat finish. They are the perfect choice for porch railings and deck railings.
Indoor railings are mostly used on stairs and indoor balconies. Indoor railing height must be at least 32 inches to prevent a fall and a maximum of 36 inches to enable comfortable grasping of the handrails.
Although there are other materials available for indoor railings, transparent glass stair railings have recently gained a lot of popularity. They offer unobstructed views in houses with indoor balconies.
Metal railings like stainless steel railings and cast-iron railings are also an option. Stainless steel railings are low maintenance and support ornamental design. Cast-iron railings are temperature resistant.
Which Railing Suits You?
Porch railings provide added security and amp up the curb appeal of your house. Vinyl railings can provide the look of wood but spare the maintenance issues of wood.
In a crowded city like Downtown Toronto, with buildings in close proximity, Vinyl railings in balconies are appropriate as they offer some level of privacy. Some people even prefer opaque glass railings in their balconies.
In open scenic areas, cable railings are suitable for unobstructed views of nature. Aluminum railings are best suited for decks and patios as they are lightweight and rust-resistant.