If you are remodeling your commercial building, you may be looking at updated handrails. Custom handrails are a great way to update your building. According to one survey, about two-thirds of consumers will avoid a place of business due to its external appearance — especially if it looks outdated or old. Here are three tips to make the customization process easier as you remodel.
Follow Local Building Codes
Before you set your heart on one design or material, be sure you are up to date on your area's building code requirements. In order for handrails to be used in a place of business, they have to meet certain parameters, like standard widths and heights, so that they are safe for people to use. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) also requires certain distances between the walls and handrails, and the Americans with Disabilities Act may also require your handrails to have grab-bar dimensions. While customization allows you to choose an attractive handrail, be sure to consider the utilitarian purposes first, and how those handrails will be used by your customers and employees.
Work With an Architect
Once you've clarified the building code requirements for your building, you may want to seek out an architect or other professional for additional help. You may love how certain styles look when you are browsing the selection, but you have to consider how the handrails will look with your building's overall style. Even if you have a picture or a small sample of a handrail, it can be hard to envision the final product.
An architect can use a computer-aided design (CAD) program and develop an image of how the handrails and other design elements will look in your building. This type of software is valuable since you can see a finalized depiction of how the handrail looks with balustrades and end-posts before you commit to a purchase.
Choose the Right Material for Your Environment
You may want a certain material, but consider how often the handrails will be used and where they will be used. Some materials require more attention and maintenance than others. If you are working in an industrial or medical setting where handrails will need to be cleaned frequently, make sure that the material won't break down easily from chemicals. Are the handrails going to be exposed to the elements? If so, you need a material that can withstand corrosion or one that is powder-coated with protective paint.
Reach out to a building supplier in your area for more tips and information on adding customized handrails to your business.
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