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Helpful Tips for Maintaining your Railing Products

On this page, we provide helpful tips, news, updates, and more to keep you informed about our business, services, and ways to maintain our products. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us for answers.

Helpful Guidelines for Maintaining Your Star Rail

The factory-applied, electrostatic, powder-coat paint system on our product is a similar paint finish to the finish used on many high-end automobiles. The care involved should be similar.

Surface Finish Care and Maintenance (for most areas):

  • Bi-annual inspections and cleaning schedules are sufficient for most areas. Do not allow build-up of dirt, moss or any foreign debris on the painted surface of the product. Over a period of time, this can become baked onto the surface, marring the finish. 
  • Bi-annual washing of the products with a non-abrasive, mild soap (such as car wash or dishwashing soap) and water, using a non-abrasive sponge or cloth, is recommended. Rinse with clean water as needed to remove the cleaning solution. Do not use harsh detergents or chemicals to clean the product. Avoid excessive rubbing or over-cleaning. Do not allow harsh detergents or chemicals, such as concrete cleaners, insecticides, and herbicides, to come in contact with the product when cleaning or spraying other areas of the building or decks. For optimum cleaning, do not clean the products in direct sunlight. Temperature range should be between 50-70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Touching Up Products:

  • Be sure to touch up areas where bare aluminum has become exposed as soon as noticed, as this may prevent any further oxidation and future chipping of the paint. Use a small bristle paintbrush and only slightly overlap the original paint and the touch-up paint. Avoid using a sprayer as this will cause overspray and result in a larger area that may discolor at a different rate than the original paint. Note: the touch-up paint may differ slightly from the original, and over the years this will become more apparent, especially in metallic colors. 
  • Over the years, the painted surface may become dull. A high-quality silicone-free automobile wax can be applied to restore the finish.

Glass Cleaning (if applicable):

  • Cleaning of the glass is similar to the railing. Wipe the glass clean using a mild soap and water, with a soft cloth or sponge. A standard glass cleaner and paper towels may also be used. Do not use scrapers or abrasive items of any kind, as these will scratch the glass.

Fasteners and Accessories:

  • Do quarterly checks of bolts, fasteners, and glass gaskets.

Railing Strength: Safety is Job No. 1

By Norm Plumb

The primary function of a guardrail is that of safety. Although esthetics and costs are often considerations found on most consumers’ guardrail shopping lists, guardrail structural strength and safety should top their list. One of the key primary components of a guardrail is typically the posts, which are used to support and anchor the guardrail to the structure. You should know that all posts are not created equal.

As a general rule, bigger is better (and stronger). For example, a 2” x 2” post with a .125 wall thickness will yield better system design load strength than a smaller 1 ½” x 1 ½” post with a 0.080 wall thickness. Although the guardrail system using the smaller post may cost less, one has to ask themselves, is the saving in cost worth compromising your family and friends’ safety? When a residential consumer is buying an aluminum guardrail system, it will likely be the last sundeck railing they will buy for their residence in their lifetime. Don’t make saving common cents affect your common sense when it comes to making good purchasing decisions.

The moral of the story is: you’re better to be SAFE than sorry. Save yourself from being sorry about worrying if that less-expensive railing is up for the task of providing you with peace of mind, knowing it is safe. Remember the primary function of a guardrail is that of safety!!!

Norm Plumb
STAR Systems International Ltd

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