How much do cable railings cost?
How much do cable railings cost?
$150 – $285 cost per linear foot installed (metal post system)
$75 – $95 cost per linear foot installed (wood post system)
$150 – $250 cost per linear foot installed (composite post system)
Cable railing cost
Cable railing costs $150 to $285 per linear foot installed on average for a system including posts, handrails, wire cables, and hardware. The cost of cable railing depends on the material and whether installing staircase or deck railing. The labor cost to install cable railing is $20 to $50 per linear foot.
|Material||Average cost per linear foot installed|
|Stainless steel systems||$150 – $285|
|Aluminum systems||$150 – $240|
|Wood post systems||$75 – $95|
|Composite railing system||$150 – $250|
Cost data is from research and project costs reported by HomeGuide members.
Stainless steel cable railing costs $150 to $285 per linear foot installed and is the most popular and expensive option. Stainless steel is strong, durable, and corrosion-resistant, lasting for many years with minimal maintenance. However, stainless steel railings can be more difficult to install than other types.
Aluminum cable railing systems cost $150 to $240 per linear foot installed. Aluminum is less expensive than stainless steel, but it is still strong and durable. Aluminum cable railing systems are also lightweight, making them easier to install.
Wood is the most affordable post material used for cable railing systems and costs $75 to $95 per linear foot installed. Wood cable railing systems are less durable and require more maintenance than metal systems since wood is prone to decay, rot, and insect damage.
Composite cable railing systems cost $150 to $250 per linear foot installed. The composite material is made from a combination of wood and plastic that is strong, durable, and requires little maintenance. Composite railings withstand the elements but cannot be painted or stained and may fade in direct sun.
Cable deck railing installation costs
Cable railing systems include vertical posts and top rails made of metal, wood, or composite with slender cables that are view-friendly when used indoors or outdoors. Cable railing kits also include the hardware and components needed to install and tension the cable railing.
|Cable||$1 – 3 per linear foot|
|Post||$20 – $40 per post|
|Top rail||$20 – $40 per linear foot|
|Labor||$20 – $50 per linear foot|
|Total installed price||$75 – $285 per linear foot|
Feeney is the original cable railing manufacturer offering CableRail kits with quick-connect fittings for easier installation and CableRail conceal kits with compact, hidden fittings.
Muzata manufactures invisible cable railing kits designed for wood posts.
Atlantis Rail Cable Railing Kits are made from stainless steel in a variety of colors.
The labor cost to install cable railings averages $20 to $50 per linear foot. Some cable railing installers charge by the hour rather than by the linear foot, with rates ranging from $50 to $100 per hour. Installing cable railing takes 1 to 3 days, depending on the project size and complexity.
Other labor options include:
A general contractor charges $50 to $100 per hour and is usually hired when the railing installation is part of a larger remodel project.
A handyman charges $50 to $80 per hour and is usually hired for simple installations.
Additional cost considerations
Factors that impact the cost of installing a cable railing system include:
Material – The type of material used for the posts, handrail, and cable has a significant impact on the overall cost. Stainless steel is the most expensive option, while aluminum is less expensive. Wood posts are the cheapest but least durable option.
Labor rates – In general, labor costs are higher in urban areas than in rural areas. Also, more experienced installers have higher labor rates.
Number of corners – Corners require additional hardware and installation labor, so the more corners your railing system has, the more expensive it will be.
Number of cable runs – The number of runs of cable also affects the cost. A system with 10 runs of cable will be more expensive than a system with 6 runs of cable.
Railing length – The longer the railing, the more costs for both material and installation labor.
Design complexity – The more complex the design, the more expensive it will be to install.
Local building codes – Local building codes may require the use of specific materials or installation methods, which can increase the cost of the project.
Cable railing FAQs
Is cable railing expensive?
Cable railing is typically more expensive than most other stair railings, but the modern design looks great both inside and outside without distracting from the view. The cost to install other stair railing materials ranges from $20 to $600 per linear foot, depending on the material.
Are cable railings safe?
Yes, cable railings are safe when installed correctly. The cables should be installed at a height of 36 inches above the deck surface with the cables spaced no more than 3 inches apart. Railings also must withstand a load of at least 200 pounds per linear foot.
How far apart should cable railing be?
The spacing between cables in a cable railing system is usually 3 inches, which ensures a 4-inch sphere cannot pass through any gap in the railing, which is the industry standard for cable spacing.
Where to buy cable deck railing?
Cable deck railing kits are sold at home improvement stores and online specialty stores for DIY or handyman installation. The kits include all the materials you need including the cables, posts, and hardware. Local contractors offer more custom options, designed to your specifications.
Getting estimates from cable railing installers
Some tips for hiring a stair railing installer near you include:
Compare 3 or more estimates featuring the same post and railing materials.
Hire a licensed, bonded, and insured railing installer with 5+ years of experience.
Read online reviews from past customers on HomeGuide and Google.
Obtain a written estimate, contract, and warranty information before paying any deposits.
Work out a payment plan that includes a final payment when the project is complete.
Questions to ask
When making your final decision on the best stair installer for your project, it helps to ask these important questions:
How long have you been installing cable railing systems?
Is your company licensed, bonded, and insured?
Will you complete the railing project yourself or do you use subcontractors?
What material do you recommend for my exterior stair railing, and why?
Does the estimate include removing and disposing of my existing railing?
How long will the railing project take?
What warranty do you offer on the materials and labor?
How will you protect the rest of my home from damage during the railing remodel?