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Balcony Railings: Wood, Glass, Stainless Steel or Aluminium?

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Balcony railings are available in a wide variety of models, materials and sizes.First and foremost, a balcony railing serves to ensure the safety of the residents of the house. But it is also an aesthetic element and gives the house facade a special character. Find out in the article which balcony railing material suits your house and what advantages and disadvantages the materials wood, glass, stainless steel and aluminum have.

glass balcony railing

Balcony railings: which material is suitable?

When choosing the material for the balcony railing, you are spoiled for choice: should it be made of aluminium, stainless steel, wood or glass? Or a mixture of several materials? While balcony railings made of stainless steel or glass look modern and minimalist, you can create a rural style with a wooden balcony railing.

When planning, it’s important that you choose materials that match the style of the home. You should also consider in advance how much time you want to invest in cleaning and maintenance and how much value you place on a privacy screen. If pets or small children live in the house, you should make sure that the railing does not have large gaps.

Aluminum balcony railing

Aluminum is a particularly popular material for outdoor railings. Since it is very robust and weather-resistant, aluminum balcony railings do not have to be renewed or painted for decades. In addition, the material is particularly easy to care for. Thanks to a powder coating, the aluminum railing is dirt-repellent, as the dirt simply rolls off with the water. A rain shower or cleaning with water is enough to make the railing shine again.

The special thing about an aluminum railing is that the coating is available in almost any color. This gives you the opportunity to decorate your house facade with a colorful balcony railing. You would like to have a balcony railing made of wood, but without the associated maintenance effort? Then an aluminum railing with a wood look is the perfect alternative for you. Different models and decorative elements can be easily combined with each other. So you can put together your individual balcony railing according to your wishes and ideas. Plus: Compared to other materials, aluminum is quite inexpensive.

glass clamp

The advantages at a glance


-Weather resistant



-Different colors


Stainless steel balcony railing

Stainless steel railings look particularly elegant due to their shiny surface and are ideal for modern house buildings. Stainless steel convinces above all with its high stability. Steel balcony railings are corrosion and weather resistant, but should still be properly cared for to prevent scaling or discoloration of the material. Regular polishing and cleaning is therefore recommended. Warning: avoid scouring pads as they can leave scratches on the surface. Soft cloths with a mild detergent are more suitable.

Balcony railings made of stainless steel look very elegant and are a very special eye-catcher. The price of a pure stainless steel balcony railing is quite high. It is cheaper if only a few elements of the railing are made of stainless steel. For example, the material can be combined very well with glass walls or wood can be chosen as a handrail.


-High stability

-Weather resistant

-Noble appearance

-Rust free (with proper care)


-Light maintenance required


Glass balcony railings

Glass balcony railings look modern, elegant and minimalist. They’re especially good if you don’t want to block a nice view or you prefer an unobtrusive railing. The models of glass railings are very different: glass panels can be combined with railing posts made of steel or aluminum. However, it is also possible to fix the panels in a special floor bracket, which means that no fixings are visible at all. If you attach great importance to a balcony privacy screen, you can also use frosted glass or tinted panes instead of transparent glass for your railing.

Glass balcony railings are often combined with steel handrails.

Balcony railings use only laminated safety glass, which consists of two or more flat glass panels joined with a tear-resistant film. In the event of a break, the fragments will stick to the membrane, greatly reducing the risk of injury. Also, even if the glass breaks, it won’t fall because the glass won’t collapse on its own. In addition, the glass panels provide particularly good wind and sound insulation.Glass balcony railings need to be cleaned regularly as dirt can be seen very quickly.



-weather resistance

sound insulation


-transparent or opaque


-heavy maintenance workload



Wooden balcony railing

Of course, wooden balconies are ideal for rural buildings, but they are also gaining popularity in urban areas. With their timeless design and natural look, they also complement new construction.

Wooden railings also go well with modern new buildings.The big disadvantage of wooden railings is the high maintenance effort, since the material is not weather-resistant. To protect it from the weather, it must be painted regularly. Regular wood care is therefore essential.

Note that in addition to the material costs, you must also factor in the labor costs of the skilled workers involved in the installation.

Who makes balcony railings?

Locksmiths are basically responsible for the manufacture and assembly of metal balcony railings. In some cases locksmiths also take care of the procurement and installation of glass balcony railings. There are also companies that specialize purely in balcony railings and fences and offer railings in all sizes, colors and materials.

How high does a balcony railing have to be?

According to the guidelines of the Building Technology, the height of a balcony railing must be at least 1 m and from a fall height of more than 12 m, the railing must be at least 1.10 m. The distance between the bars of the railing must not exceed 12 cm.

How much does a balcony railing cost? Prices

The price of a balcony railing varies greatly depending on the material you choose and the size of your balcony. Basically, stainless steel and glass fall into the higher price range as balcony railings and wood and aluminum are inexpensive materials. You can save money by combining materials, such as wood with steel.

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