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Know the difference

Steps Handrails
White Handrail
Black Handrails

About Handrails & Railings 

Know the difference in handrails and railings and how to choose a quality handrail for your home

If you look around your home, you likely have many different rails serving different functions. However, a railing isn’t a handrail and a handrail isn’t a railing, though they are similar. According to most building codes, there are real differences in function between the two, and handrails and railings themselves have many variations and types. But while most people may not need a handrail or railing most of the time, nearly everyone benefits from a strategically placed rail, whether it accompanies stairs, an incline or it forms the boundary of a landing, balcony or deck. Not only can they help make areas around and inside your home safer, they also look great and add a touch of elegance, even in the smallest and most inconspicuous of places.

Two Step Handrails


Simply put, the difference in handrails and railings is more a function of their use. Mainly intended for support while traversing steps, a ramp or anywhere else someone may need assistance or the security of a rail to hold or grab, handrails provide support to the people that need them, and it gives a bit of quick stability to anyone that may be losing their balance, whether it’s wet out, a heavy load is being carried or whether a person is running or otherwise quickly traversing a flight of stairs.

According to building codes, if you have more than three stairs, you’re legally required to have a handrail. But even one step can be dangerous at night or when the weather picks up, and a handrail can save you or a family member from a nasty fall that could require a visit to the hospital.



Railings, also known as Handrails, don’t follow stairs or an incline. The main difference in handrails and railings is that railings run horizontally along elevated areas such as a landing where there is a drop on one side. Forming not only the boundary of an elevated area, railings help prevent accidents by keeping you from tumbling over the edge after a small trip or other temporary loss of balance. Mostly commonly seen indoors and outdoors at the top of a set of stairs that run from a lower to upper level, railings must be at least 36 inches high in residences and at least 42 inches in public and commercial buildings.

Post Handrails

Post Handrails

For small porches, decks and other areas that have just one or two steps, a post handrail is the perfect way to add some safety and elegance to your wood, concrete or composite decking. Made from solid metal and at the proper height to satisfy safety concerns, you’ll never again have to worry about that tricky outdoor step when you’re taking out the trash or when everyone’s hanging out at the next big family get-together.

Custom Handrails

Solid and Safe Handrails from Handrails and Railings

If you’ve ever grabbed hold of a wobbly or flimsy handrail — or, worse yet, tried to grab a handrail that wasn’t there at all — you know the danger of not having a proper, working handrail. Here at Handrails and Railings, we make solid metal handrails and railings that look great and protect you and your family from danger. From our best-selling post handrails to custom handrails and railings inside, outside and anywhere else you could use an extra helping hand, all of our metal handrails and railings are handcrafted from scratch, right here in the United States of America.

Order your next handrail or railing from us and if we don’t have the exact item you want in our store, we’ll custom make it from scratch for you. From primer versions that make a great gift to the do-it-yourselfer in your life to painted versions that are delivered and installed as a finished product, you’ll be sure to find exactly what you need to make your home safer and more beautiful with a handrail or railing from Handrails and Railings. And because all our steel handrails come with a free lifetime warranty, you can be sure that your beautiful and safe handrail or railing will last for years to come. Contact us today to see how we can help you on your handrail or railing need.


Here Are Some Common Questions And Answers

  • What is handrail code height?
    Most local codes require that handrails and railings are fastened at a height between 34″-38″. This height is a comfortable and safe height to grab onto the top rail, and use it to assist in going up and down stairs.
  • What are the measurements of your handrails?
    All of our standard handrails have the measurements in the photos of the listings, which are usually in the 2nd or 3rd photo. We have many different sizes and styles to choose from. We even build custom orders to suit the individual needs of many customers.
  • Can a POST HANDRAIL be installed on concrete?
    Yes. Our post rails come standard with a base for fastening to any solid secure flat surface, like wood, concrete or composite decking. You can also request a Post rail without the base plate to install in a new concrete pad.
  • Can a handrail be mounted to sheet rock?
    No. All handrails must be fastened to a secure, solid surface , like wood studs, or a door frame.
  • Is there any hardware included with my handrail?
    Yes. We supply 5/16″ lag bolts with each order that are painted to match your handrail.
  • Can I place a custom order for a larger handrail than your standard sizes?
    YES. We build many custom orders. Feel free to contact us or visit our home page to find a single rail handrail works for you.

​Why Choose Handrails & Railings

In the Welding trade for over 25 Years

With experience in heavy equipment repair,high pressure piping systems, and structural steel, we have the knowledge to build handrails and railings that will last a lifetime

Outdoor Railings

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Contact us with ANY questions you may have.

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