Any wood, no matter how well painted or stained, will eventually rot when exposed to weather. Untreated lumber, used for decorative porch railings, rots within a few years. (Why some builders use regular, non-treated lumber in exterior settings is beyond me.)
These railings on a home going on the market needed to be completely torn out and replaced – not an easy job when you have to match the existing railings in more protected areas under the roof. Treated lumber was milled to match the existing railings, treated stringers were cut to match as well, and all were installed with custom-made jigs to match the existing offset of stiles. A very unusual angle and joint on the back railing had to be duplicated as well.
End result? Brand new railings that should, with proper care, last 3 or 4 times as long as the originals. Total job cost – front at back, including materials and labor – less than $600.
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