A balustrade is basically a group of balusters or stair sticks that support the handrail or parapet of a staircase. Balustrades are used to ensure safety and structural stability. The parapet walls and the balcony railings prevent the occurrence of accidents. The spacing between balusters is even, the distance between them is equal to the base size.
Types of balustrades
Balustrades are made from a large range of material these days and these are available in many different colors. They can be made from glass, stainless steel, wood, stone, polymer and polyurethane. These are described below.
- Glass balustrades
For areas around the pool and balconies, glass balustrades prove to be the best option. A balustrade made of glass provides the entire view clearly and at the same time, it does not compromise with any safety feature. With the help of these, one can make the area of space appear bigger. There are a number of framing options and fixings available for these balustrades, and these are highly versatile. Anyone can easily find one that satisfies all of his requirements. For the frameless version of glass balustrade, one needs to have an approval of an engineer, so that he can make sure that the engagement of the balustrade is done properly and thickness of the glass is correct, as it needs to take the needed weight. They do not need much maintenance, but are required to be regularly cleaned as they get dirty quickly especially when they are placed around the pool.
- Stainless Steel Balustrades
Balustrades made of stainless steel are highly durable and strong. They can withstand high temperatures. They help in giving a luxury effect to the surroundings. They give a sleek and an elegant look to the house. Since they are extremely strong, they provide safety to the house. Stainless steel balusters can be easily combined with glass. Since they provide an addition of glamour to the environment, stainless steel and glass combinations are highly sought after in the present times. They provide a modern look.This combination is suitable for hospitality industry too. One can see glass balustrades having steel handrails and steel balustrades with timber handrails. When used together, they help in providing an aesthetic and sleek appeal to staircases and balconies. Stainless steel balusters are easy to clean. There is no danger of rust.
- Wood Balustrades
Balustrades made of wood provide a natural feel and warmth to a house. As compared to glass or steel balustrades, they are warm to touch. These are suitable for indoors and traditional homes, but if correctly treated, can be placed outdoors. Treatment of these balustrades is necessary so that problems like termites and warping can be avoided. In the case of outdoors, it is necessary to seal the wooden rails, but for indoors, oiling them and wiping with a cloth is sufficient. These require regular maintenance.
- Stone Balustrades
Stone balustrades are more suitable for estates and grandeur buildings. The making of these balustrades is done either by casting or carving. Out of these two, ones made by carving is more expensive. Those made of marble, which is the highest quality stone, is very costly, but they appear exquisite.
- Polymer Balustrades
Polymer balustrades look like stone balustrades, but these are relatively cheap. These are crafted from a lighter and cheaper material as compared to stone. These rails are basically a synthetic stone. They are made from a mixture of pigment, polymer dust and limestone dust. There are a large number of designs to select from.
- Polyurethane Balustrade
Balustrades made of polyurethane are also becoming popular nowadays. They do not have much weight. They are very durable. Their cost is less as compared to other systems of balustrades.