We get this question more and more frequently. Most times, our clients are looking to replace their old wooden balusters with wrought iron. Not only does it completely change the look of the staircase and home, but it can often dramatically tighten up the balustrade making it much more secure.
Removing the old wooden balusters and installing wrought iron is often a very easy procedure, and one we recommend all the time to make a breathtaking visual impact. When done by one of our experts, it takes as little as 1-2 days. The typical do-it-yourselfer may need a bit more time – but it’s still one of the easier tasks to accomplish concerning stairs.
One important factor is to choose a new baluster that will fit adequately in the space available. In other words, if your current wooden balusters are spaced 4″ apart, it can be very difficult, if not impossible to install a large scroll that may be 7″ wide. We usually recommend choosing a simpler iron baluster with a single or double element. Space permitting, the occasional scroll can be installed when sandwiched between simpler straight balusters.
Replacing them is typically done in the following manner:
- Cut out the existing wooden balusters
- Layout the pattern of iron balusters
- Cut the new balusters to the correct lengths
- Epoxy them in place
Often it is also necessary to install shoes on the bottom of the new iron balusters to cover gaps in the stain on the treads and landing tread. (Because the stain was probably applied after the larger block bottom wooden balusters were installed originally – there is usually a small square area underneath with no stain.)