Rated 3.3 out of 5 by 8
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by CharlieDigital Look good, very difficult for DIY'er to install
As others have said, this kit is *very challenging* for a DIY'er to install. I only needed two kits, but ended up buying 4 after messing up the first two kits. I absolutely butchered the first kit and learned from those mistakes. The second kit, I did better, but the install left visible 1-2mm gaps in the joints. The third kit was flawless with tight joints and very no mistakes.
The challenge is that there are many nuances to getting this to look right and the instructions do a poor job of explaining these nuances to you so that you are left to your own devices to figure out through trial an error. If you do this for a living every day, you will have no problem with this kit; it will be pretty straightforward.
If you are doing this once, you will have a hard time if you don't follow the old adage of "measure twice, cut once".
Here are my tips:
1) Buy 3-6 2x3's. They are cheap and if you mess up on some 2x3's, you can always use the scraps for other odd jobs. But these blanks allow you to test your cut and get your angles and measurements correct. It is incredibly important as it is difficult to measure and your actual posts may not be totally square. Use 2x3 lumber to create test cuts and transfer the lines to your actual parts. USE BLANKS! Use them for both the top rails and the bottom rails as if your posts are not square, you will need different dimensions.
2) To get straight balusters, you MUST use a reference measurement for the bottom-most hole to the edge of the cut. I used 2 7/8" as a reference. But you MUST transfer this measurement to your bottom cuts consistently across your pieces. Cut "wide" and trim down until you get exactly 2 7/8" inch from the edge of the bottom most hole to the edge of the cut. (You may need a different reference point depending on the span you need to cover since you want to center your holes).
3) It was impossible to fit the balusters in without cutting a corner off of the balusters; they are too tall without trimming the "front" corner away.
4) Pay special attention to the brackets that hold the bottom rail in place. There is an "easy" way to install them and a "hard" way to install them. The easy way, you will drill into the post on an angle. The hard way, you will come perpendicular to the post (which may be impossible!). So pay attention and mock fit the pieces before drilling.
5) Always pre-drill! In some cases, I marked with a pencil and used a knife to start the hole and drilled slowly. The material has a tendency to curl so you must move it away for clean seams.
What I would recommend to the manufacturer is to include a small plastic angle measurement tool. It would add maybe $0.10 to the cost of the kit, but make it tremendously easier to install. I'd also recommend the manufacturer include molded blanks that you can cut and hold flat against the edge of the rails to draw your lines. Probably would add $2-5 per product, but save customers a lot of headaches.
April 23, 2016
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by Texas123 Pro Rail stair kit worked great
Installing the stair railing was a challenge, you must figure out the correct angles for the cuts and insure the ballister spacing will be correct, if you do not get this exactly correct on both the top and bottom rail your ballisters will not be perfectly parallel with your posts. For everything to look right you must also get the alignment on both sides of the stairs very close to each other, this took a lot of time. You also need to spend time ensuring that your post spacing is correct and that your posts are plumb. I would certainly not mount the post without having the stair railing kit on hand, I found that where the post are mounted on the patio and the steps was critical, be very careful and I recomend mocking it up before you mount the post. See my photo with the clamps.
I installed Veranda Pro Rail around my entire patio and down my patio stairs. Normally the Pro Rail is used with the 5x5 post covers but I preferred the look of the smaller post and since all of my corners were 90 degree I could use the 4x4 post/cover. Everything worked as designed and the finished product looks wonderful. The install did take longer than I anticipated but we got faster as we gained experience. Remember this is a plastic/PVC product and all the screws go into plastic so you need to be careful not to over tighten (I also pre-drilled and ended up going through a couple of the square drive bits). Once everything is assembled the railing is very sturdy, some of my railings were just under the maximum length and even those feel sturdy. Since none of this product is stocked locally I was concerned that if I messed something up I would have to reorder and wait for it to arrive, by following the instructions (they were included) and being very careful everything worked fine. I did call Veranda with a couple of questions, once before I placed my order and once during installation, their support people were easy to reach and very knowledgeable about the product. Using this railing system was much less expensive than wrought iron, I believe it looks much better and it will never need painting, of course the big reason it was less expensive is my wife and I had to install it ourselves.
June 17, 2014
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by TRCar54 Run away!!
If you like puzzles and enjoy an exercise in trying to maintain composure when thoroughly frustrated you should buy this product. The instructions are vague in some areas and the technical writing team should be replaced.
I bought what appeared to be a hidden bracket kit (#73013132) because I hate the appearance of the cheapo attachment kits that are available. I looked everywhere to see if the mounting hardware is visible and not one picture showed anything being visible. The lower rail hardware is very visible and amateurish in appearance and and while the upper rail hardware is hidden, the screws driven through the side of the rail is not. Even the package only showed the upper bracket and even that was shown without the rail attachment screw.
I will say that the straight rail kits are a pretty good product and much easier and straight forward to install.
Remember.....you get what you pay for. If I did it again I would go to a good lumber yard where people are knowledgeable about the product and buy Azek or Hampton.
November 21, 2015
Rated 1.0 out of 5.0 by NotHappy Chesapeake VA
I reviewed the "6' x 36' Pro Rail a week or so ago and found they really aren't 6' long, they're 67". Since I really did need 6' long rails, I had to return them to the store and buy 8' rails instead, just to get enough length. With that same purchase, I bought two sets of these stair rails. Since I had problems with the others, I just checked these too. They AREN'T 6' LONG EITHER - they're also 67" long which is TOO SHORT to span the distance. That means another two weeks delay in my project while I return these and try to figure out how I'm going to correct this issue. After reading reviews more thoroughly on these rails, I found Home Depot should be aware of this and yet, has not changed your website to reflect reality and advertised these rails as what they really are. I've spend $1000's at your stores over the years, and "DISAPPOINTED" does not begin to cover it.
September 13, 2015
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by AT Not as easy as it looks
I picked this railing since I thought the stair rail was the most flexible for my project. I had (2) real issues when installing it. 1) The instruction were no real clear on how to cut the bottom and top rail with regards to making the first spindle parallel to the post. In all the sections I assembled they were off by the same amount. 2) The instructions call for a stainless screw to be fastened at the bottom edges of both ends of the top rail. They provide a template showing the screw location and tell you to use a 1/8" pilot hole. Following this I stripped off (2) of the soft stainless screw heads before I moved to a bigger drill bit than recommended. After stripping off another I compared the templates and found they differed by up to an 1/8" which could have you putting the screw into an area that wont work.
The real issue with the stripped off screws came when I has to replace a post wrap that was cracked. I basically had to mangle the top rails and rip the bracket right out of the post to remove the handrail. I have reached out to the manufacturer with no reply after close to a week.
June 16, 2015
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by nyck instructions could be better, need complete installation video and final look
I'll make it short, the long version did not saved. This is for Concrete installation.
Don't use sleeve anchors, use drop it anchors. Be very careful with the depth of the holes in concrete (too deep and it won't bite, take into account the thickness of the post's base plate and washer.
Can't use 3/8 sleeve anchors even thought the instructions tell you to drill 3/8 hole in concrete. You might need to use 1/4 drop anchor. You can only pass thru 5/16 bolt.
There are visible screws and caps in the pro line, see my pic at the base. There are single rounded screws on the side for the top part on each side, their paper template is a joke. The screw snapped, don't use impact wrench, and get shorter screws if you use their paper template. A 1/4 shorter, use a screw driver. Or figure out another way to secure the top part to the post.
Cut each piece of railing and check and double check before you cut the top piece because the edge will chip off if you need to trim it a little. It's not thru-and-thru white.
For stair installation, the balusters needs to be cut at an angle, which would also cut off the notched part. Don't worry about it, it's not needed. Or you can notch it with one of those vinyl too.
I might have to buy another kit just to redo the top piece, home depot don't sell it by itself. Or my next project would be to figure out how to fill those screw holes on the top rail.
Hey homedepot, let people revised their review and be able to save it before posting.
June 15, 2015
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by genral299 finished product is lacking
Easy install. But the finished product is lacking due to no end caps to give a good trim look.
May 26, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Ross Strong, easy to install
The white pro rail stair kit was easy to install and cut. It was strong and exactly what we needed and paid for. Looks great!
November 21, 2013