One of the most common questions our customers ask is, “Do I need a professional railing installer?” This is a loaded question based upon the complexity of your stair and railing system, your understanding of the simple mathematics and your carpentry skills. A full balustrade installation can be compared to piecing together a gargantuan jigsaw puzzle with a variety of tools and using pieces that have a specific position but require some modification to get that perfect fit. If you have zero woodworking experience then you should avoid all but the most simple of railing installations, such as adding a wall-mounted rail, etc. Unfortunately, we cannot answer this question for you but help you to find the answer for yourself.
To do this you must first evaluate your particular system and the individual components that comprise it. The level of completion of specific components can vary based on the manufacturer which can make the installation more flexible for the professional but may also require more skilled craftsmanship. If you are not an expert, choosing stair parts that most closely fit your banister will make the installation process simpler. The stair specialists at WoodStairs.com are always available to help you identify the best components for your project. Feel free to call us any time 888-390-7245
Next look at each component individually and ask yourself, “Do I have the right tool for this job”. For example, if you are installing wood balusters for stairs you will probably need a saw and a drill. While you may not own the specific stair installation tools you may be able to borrow them from a friend or neighbor. A large portion of stair and railing installation requires very little skill, such as screwing, plugging, sanding, etc. So, if you know someone who is skilled in woodworking and has a few of the larger tools, they can often help with the more difficult tasks leaving you with those that require less skill. Also, there are tool rental companies and many of the large home improvement stores have rental departments as well.
The next question you must ask is, “do I know how to use the tool correctly?” If the answer to this is yes then you probably have a do-it-yourself banister project. There is some simple math required for layouts and angles but there are a number of calculators available online to help you figure out quantities, layouts, angles and so on.
Remember stair and railing installation is not an easy process but if you have the stair installation tools, basic carpentry skills, a good eye and some patience most people can get the job done. Not only can you save some cash on the installation but you will also know that sense of accomplishment from building a beautiful and permanent piece of furniture in your home. This is not to say that a professional stair builder or railing installer should not be considered. A professional craftsman with good references and portfolio will often do the job in a fraction of the time with a beautiful finished product.