Deck Railing and Benches

by Rich
(Chippewa Falls, WI)

My deck is 12 x 24. It is about 2'-6" up off the ground so we believe we should have a railing around three sides.

We have railing steps going up both ends and my wife wants rails up and down at least 36 in tall.

I would love to have some benches to cut down clutter on deck which has a nice weber grill, deck box and small 6 foot table. What do you think?


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Mar 19, 2011
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Benches near guard rails require higher rail height
by: Editor - Rich Bergman

At 2'-6" above the ground you will have to have a 36" high railing. Built in benches area nice addition to any deck but they do not substitute are railing unless the elevation change to the ground is less than 24".

Also do not forget that if the bench is beside the railing the height requirement typically goes up and is measured from the bench surface. Children are very adept at climbing onto a 17' high bench and then climbing over the next 18" or so to the top of the rail.

Double check with your local town building department what they recommend about that situation but I would tell you a bench against a rail will require a higher railing.

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