The Best Glass Railings For A Luxury Deck
When it comes to deck railing, glass is the luxury option. There's something about the shine of glass, the expansive views, and the clean modern style that makes a deck truly feel like an extension of a lavish indoor space.
If you're looking to set your deck apart from the neighborhood, a glass railing is the perfect way to do it. But glass railings come in all shapes and sizes. Which one fits your deck best? Let's run through the best glass railing systems on the market to help you find out.
Table of Contents
- Why Choose Glass Railing For Your Deck?
- Best Glass Railings For Your Deck
- Other Top Glass Deck Railing Systems
Why Choose Glass Railing For Your Deck?
Benefits of Glass Deck Railing:
- Luxurious looks
- Best deck views possible
- Invites the light & makes your deck look bigger
- Tempered glass is extremely strong and durable
- Easy to clean
- Protection from wind
The main draw towards a glass railing is obvious - it looks incredible. The glitz and glamour of glass is immediately apparent to anyone who sets foot on the deck, or views it from afar.
If you love modern decor in your home or deck, a glass railing will fit perfectly with your style. If you have an expensive home or a luxurious deck, glass railing is the perfect cherry on top of your extravagant look.
If your deck has an amazing view, glass accents that view better than any other railing, too. In addition, transparent glass brings light into your deck space, making for a brighter, more inviting deck space that also looks bigger.
Beyond all that, glass railing is incredibly sturdy, both the railing structure itself and the individual tempered glass panels. (We field tested the strength of glass, and you can watch our video of the test here).
Glass railings are durable and low-maintenance, only requiring periodic cleaning. And if you live in a cool climate, solid glass railings can make your deck more comfortable in the elements by blocking cold winds.
Best Glass Railing Systems For Your Deck
At DecksDirect, we seek out the best deck products on the market so our customers can rest assured they're browsing and buying the highest-quality, most-proven options. If you're looking for a glass deck railing, read on to find the best glass railings for your deck and your lifestyle.
We'll start with two all-around top options, then hit some railings that do one or two things especially well.
Trex Signature Glass Railing
Trex is perhaps the best-known brand name in the world when it comes to decks, so it's no surprise Trex has one of the top glass railing systems on the market. Trex Signature Glass railing fits right in Trex's wheelhouse with proven looks and long-lasting performance.
Trex Signature Glass Railing is notable for its clean, modern top rail that fits perfectly with the modern aesthetic of glass panels. These top rails come in easy-to-buy kits with top and bottom rails, plus all the bracketry you need. Just add Trex Signature Posts and glass panels and you've got a modern glass railing. Installation is pretty straightforward - just watch this video and see how easy it can be.
Trex Signature Glass Railing comes with three color options for your posts and rails. All three are modern, textured looks, rather than the glossy finishes of some railings. Textured Bronze tends to blend right into natural views, while Charcoal Black is the most modern look. Meanwhile Classic White works with glass panels to brighten up a space while matching any white trim on your house.
The Trex name brings a few more benefits, too. Trex makes a coordinating adjustable gate, so you can keep your deck secure while matching the rest of your railing.
When it comes to deck stairs, it's tricky to use full glass panels. That's because stair angles and dimensions can vary so much that it takes a lot of very precise measuring to source tempered glass panels at the exact sizes and angles you need.
With Trex, though, that's not an issue. The Trex Signature Railing line can use several other options in place of glass panels, so you can have a consistent top rail look across your deck while using glass panels on your level deck surface and something else along your stairs. Among the top options: traditional metal balusters, horizontal rod rail...
…or modern farmhouse-style mesh panels:
Shop Trex Signature
AFCO Pro Glass Railing
AFCO makes quality-crafted aluminum railings that are among the the most durable and stylish in the country. From aluminum baluster railing to stainless steel cable railing, AFCO is a deck railing powerhouse. Their glass railing system is one of our all-around favorites, with a crisp, enduring look that fits almost any deck.
Unlike Trex Signature, the AFCO Pro top rail has a bit more rounding to it. It's a more traditional top rail look, and when paired with the super-modern glass panels, it creates a timeless feel that fits almost any decor style you choose for your deck.
AFCO Glass Railing comes in three color options: the textured black shown above, plus the textured bronze and textured white rails shown below:
Like Trex Signature, all three colors come in textured matte finishes that look beautiful and hold up extremely well in the outdoor elements.
AFCO Pro's quality craftsmanship shines through in a deck railing designed to open up your amazing deck views. We also love AFCO's workmanship for its sturdiness, durability, and low-maintenance appeal.
Shop AFCO Glass
Other Top Glass Deck Railing Systems
Beyond those two excellent all-around options, there are several more top glass railings you could consider for your deck. Let's run through some specific deck railing priorities you might be looking for, with a top railing recommendation for each.
Best DIY Glass Deck Railing: Fortress FE26 Pure View With Glass Balusters
Glass railing as a whole is easier to install than you'd think. One of the major hurdles isn't even installation - it's accurately measuring your space and buying custom-sized tempered glass panels that fit perfectly.
One way to avoid that step entirely is to choose a railing with individual glass balusters, like the FE26 Pure View Glass Baluster railing by Fortress.
Glass balusters have a look all their own, while still bringing many of the same benefits as full glass panel railing, from opening up your view to inviting in the light, to the modern style that's a hallmark of glass deck railing.Shop Fortress FE26
Best Composite Railing With Glass: Trex Transcend Glass Railing
All of the glass railings we've profiled so far have been metal-based systems with metal posts and rails housing the glass panels. But metal isn't the only option for framing out glass railing. Composite railing delivers a more substantial, traditional look that can pair great with glass panels.
In addition to its metal Signature line, Trex also offers a composite railing system that can accommodate glass panels. Trex Transcend Glass Railing is an amazing blending of classic style and the functionality of glass.
With Trex Transcend Glass, you'll notice thicker posts and rails than most metal systems. (The posts themselves are usually composite post sleeves that slide over existing wood posts - a great choice if you're replacing a wood railing or already have wood posts installed).
Shop Trex Transcend
Best Breeze-Promoting Glass Railing For Hot Climates: Fortress FE26 Pure View With Glass Balusters
In cooler climates, glass railing is an awesome way to cut the breeze and keep your deck space warmer. But there's a glass railing option for hot climates, too: Fortress FE26 Pure View with Glass Balusters
Shop Fortress Pure View
Glass Railings With The Best Visibility: Century Scenic Railing
All glass railings will make a major impact on your deck view. But the less framing you can have around your glass, the more wide-open your views will be. That's the idea behind Century Scenic Glass Railing, which delivers the most unobstructed views by completely eliminating the top and bottom rails.
The glass panels fit securely into grooves in the Century deck posts, creating a sturdy, code-compliant railing that doesn't need rails running across the top or bottom of your glass panel. To maximize an amazing view, it's hard to beat the minimalist look of Century Scenic.
For comparison, you can check out the deck below, which features a more traditional metal railing (Century Aluminum Railing) with a top rail, then transitions into the Century Scenic Glass system to turn the wide portion of the deck into a luxury glass balcony:
Shop Century Scenic
Best Glass Railings By Color & Finish
When picking out a glass railing, think about the colors present in your home's exterior. Matching (or complementing) your siding, trim, or even gutters with your deck railing can tie the look of your space together.
Glass railings can come in any number of color options. Here are some of our favorites:
Glass Railing With The Most Color Options: Trex Transcend Glass Railing
The advantage of using a composite glass deck railing like Trex Transcend is the wide range of color options you can choose from.
The Transcend line features 7 different color options, including a range of browns, tans, and grays that pair extremely well with any Trex deck board. And because Trex Transcend can use a deck board as a built-in drink rail, that means you can match your drink rail to your decking. Below, this lakeside deck used a sleek black Trex Transcend railing while tying a gray drink rail to gray deck boards:
You can choose a full gray system, like the one below, substituting the gray balusters for stylish glass:
You can even mix and match colors, using different posts and rails to create a truly one-of-a-kind deck. (The railing shown below is a more traditional baluster railing, but shows off the color contrasts you can create. You can use the same color scheme with glass, if you want to).
Shop Trex Transcend
Textured White: AFCO Pro Glass & Trex Signature Glass
A lot of white deck products tend to by glossy and shiny. But the subtlety of a textured finish helps your deck railing blend in an accent your view, rather than reflecting light and drawing attention.
Shop AFCO Glass
Gloss Black: Fortress FE26 Pure View With Glass Balusters
If you'd like to add some gloss to your space, Fortres FE26 Pure View Glass Baluster railing comes with a glossy black option. One advantage of the gloss is that it reflects light just like the glass balusters themselves do, creating a unified look in your railing.
Shop Fortress Glass Balusters
Gloss White: Century Scenic Railing
Same goes for a glossy white, which brightens up your deck space through both color and finish. The Century Scenic Glass Railing system comes with a gloss white finish option for its posts.
Because Century Scenic doesn't use a top or bottom rail, the gloss white finish is used sparingly and allowed to really shine (no pun intended) where it does appear.Shop Century Scenic
Best Glass Railing With A Drink Rail: Trex Transcend Glass Railing
Glass railing blends form and function beautifully. Another railing feature does the same thing: a drink rail.
A drink rail is a flat surface on top of your deck railing where you can rest drinks, food, plants, or decorations. If you'd like your glass deck railing to feature a drink rail, we'd highly recommend the Trex Transcend Glass Railing system.
With Trex's years of experience in the outdoor living space, the brand has really figured out how to incorporate a sturdy, continuous drink rail that's uninterrupted by raised posts. That's great for your view, while also serving as a built-in table and saving you valuable space on your deck.
Shop Trex Transcend
Best Glass Railing With A Fascia-Mount Option: Century Scenic Railing
Speaking of saving space, another way you can maximize the usable area on your deck's surface is to mount your railing on the sides of your deck instead of on the surface. This is called fascia mounting, and you'd be surprised how much deck space you can save with a fascia mount.
The Century Scenic system, shown above, is a great glass railing that you can mount to your deck's fascia boards. Century's fascia mounting hardware is strong and well-tested, keeping your railing totally secure and sturdy.
Here's what it looks like from the surface of your deck, expanding out the usable space you have by moving the railing off of the deck's surface:
Shop Century Scenic
Best Glass Railing For Deck Stairs: Fortress FE26 Pure View With Glass Balusters
We noted above that full glass panels can be tricky when it comes to stairs. There's a lot of precise measuring needed to cut glass panels to the exact dimensions and angles you need to fit your stairs and meet building codes.
If you're looking for an easier solution for your deck stairs, check out Fortress FE26 Pure View Glass Baluster railing. With individual glass balusters instead of full panels, you can easily fit a range of stair angles and keep the luxury glass look from top to bottom.
Shop Fortress Pure View
Browse more deck design and railing style notes to upgrade your backyard space and deck in the DecksDirect Railing Style Guide: the quickest way to learn if your home is more suited for a classic aluminum deck railing or a showstopping cable rail setup.
The more you know, the better your deck and backyard projects will be! Whether you're looking at a brand new project, a deck update, or a style refresh, give our deck project planners a call at 1-888-824-5316 or send us an email at email@example.com. Our experienced team will help you get the information, products, and tools you need for an awesome deck completely personalized to your needs!