Aluminum has been used for a number of years in construction and for other uses when a lightweight but strong solution was sought. Alloys manufactured from aluminum are used in aircraft, furniture, clothing and many other items. Aluminum's strength to weight ratio is what makes it so attractive for so many uses. Steel is stronger, but is much heavier and so steel of the same weight or thickness of aluminum does not offer the same strength. Aluminum also lasts a long time because it does not easily corrode.
Aluminum as a material for railings can be used in many ways.
Anodized aluminum: Corrosion of aluminum is even further delayed by putting a thin coating on the surface of the aluminum. This prevents the aluminum from oxidizing, preventing corrosion. Strengthened: Aluminum can be further strengthened by the insertion of wood blocks into the aluminum at critical points, so that the aluminum is even stronger. Coated: A powder coating can be applied to aluminum by means of new painting techniques. Through the addition of these powder coatings, plain old silver aluminum can now be available in beautiful, bright new colors. PVC: PVC can be attached to fully formed aluminum after it is manufactured. This can serve two purposes. It can further protect the aluminum and it can add a new dimension to the design and color of the aluminum.
Aluminum is one of the easiest of materials to work with and install, so it is no surprise that manufacturers have started developing uses for aluminum in railings. Vertical aluminum posts are easily fixed into the bottom posts of a railing, allowing for speed of installation. Even the homeowner do-it-yourselfer is happy to be able to save time with an easy method such as this. Posts of other materials such as PVC or CPVC can also be fixed into the aluminum bottom posts. In addition to aluminum, aluminum alloys are being used more and more in railings because of the extra longevity they give to the railings. These alloy processes give aluminum an even greater strength to weight ratio and protect it further against corrosion.
Andrew Caxton contributes adding long articles on deck and balcony for http://www.deck-porch-railings.com. Find more publications about aluminum railings at his website.
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