How To Build A Railing For Concrete Steps

Adding a railing to your concrete steps can make them more secure and safer. Building a railing is easier than one might think, and you don’t have to be an expert carpenter to do it.

There are many ways to create a railing for concrete steps. Suspending an existing railing is one option, although it may not be necessary when you already have a structure that works well in this way. Another common method of building a railing is to use a post and baluster design, like the one featured here. This DIY project consists of constructing or repairing existing posts, adding support boards at either end and using spindles or balusters to create the railing.

If you’ve ever wondered how to build a railing for concrete steps, then this article is for you. We’ll walk you through the entire process of building a railing for your concrete steps. Read on.


First, measure the height and width of your stairs. Then, measure the diameters of each column. Next, you need to know how many balusters will fit between each column and stair rung—this is called “spacing.”

The most common railing height is 36 inches; however, it can be as low as 30 or as high as 42 inches depending on personal preference and building codes (see local requirements). For example, if a railing has a total span of 12 feet and is 36″ high from top rail to bottom rail with 2″x4″ posts (or 2″x6″), then there will be 9 feet between posts: 6’+3’+3′.


Once you have your railing cut to the proper size and shape, it’s time to attach it to the stairs. To do this, you will need:

  • A drill
  • A screwdriver or screw gun
  • Wood screws that are long enough for your railing and strong enough for concrete (usually 3-5 inches)

The exact spacing between each screw will depend on how wide apart your boards are. You may need to measure this distance before beginning so as not to waste wood by attaching pieces too closely together or too far apart. If a mistake is made, however, there is usually room for error since most people build these railings themselves instead of purchasing them pre-made from a store.


Balusters are the vertical posts that make up rails. Most balusters are made of wood, but you can also use metal or plastic. The process for cutting the balusters is much like cutting the boards: first, determine how many balusters you need to cut out; then measure and mark them as described above.

Once all your pieces are cut, lay them out on your work surface (the ground will do just fine) and make sure they’re straight enough to fit together properly. Assemble two or three together at a time so they don’t fall apart when you try to drill holes in them later on. It’s okay if some pieces end up being slightly crooked—you’ll sand everything down eventually anyway.


To install the balusters on the railing, you need to make sure that they are spaced evenly and level. You can use a tape measure and a level or a laser level for this step.

Once you have measured your stairs as well as marked them with chalk, you will be ready to cut each piece of wood so that it fits perfectly into place. Make sure that all four sides of each piece of wood fit perfectly against another part of the staircase before drilling any holes into them.

If there is no way around splitting one long piece into two smaller ones, then this is an acceptable option as well — just be sure that all pieces are even when installed together.



  • If you’ve used peg balusters, now is the time to drill holes for them in the concrete column and attach them by screwing them into place. Be sure that each one is firmly secured. Use a hammer drill if necessary to ensure a strong bond between your new railing and each column.
  • Attach the railing to each column with lag screws (aka hex head bolts). You’ll want 1/4″ diameter × 1-1/2″ long Lag Screws for this process; they’re available at any home improvement store or hardware store like Lowe’s or Home Depot. Drill pilot holes into both sides of your railings with a masonry bit so that they fit snugly onto the length of lag screw without slipping off at either end when you tighten it down onto itself with pliers or other tools like wire brushes until tight enough not to move but not so tight as to split wood fibers around edges where contact occurs during installation process itself.

Building a railing for concrete steps doesn’t have to be difficult. You just have to follow the right steps.

Building a railing for concrete steps doesn’t have to be difficult. You just have to follow the right steps.

Measure the height of your steps and find out how many balusters you’ll need. Measure the distance between each step and use that number as your guide when placing balusters on one side of the railing.

Next, cut the balusters so they fit snugly together in this new arrangement; then drill holes in each end where they intersect with other pieces (this is called bridging). Attach them with screws or metal brackets if necessary—and voila. In no time at all, you’ll have an attractive, sturdy railing built from scratch using minimal tools and materials.

Final words

Building a railing for your concrete steps is a simple process that anyone can do. You don’t have to spend money on hiring a professional, and you don’t need any special tools or skills. It’s just a matter of following the steps above.

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