What Is A Composite Balustrade And What Is Its Purpose?

Many people across the UK make significant changes to their outside living area every year. The cost of this will depend on whether this is a small landscaping job or a more drastic change, such as installing a decking area.

Anyone investing in a decking area will have many considerations before the job can even start, including the positioning, size of the area, intended uses, and the materials to use.

Composite is a popular choice in the UK because of its incredible versatility. This synthetic material is low-maintenance, long-lasting, and available in a variety of styles and colours.

Many exterior composite products can complement a property, including decking boards, cladding, fencing, and balustrades.

This article will help UK consumers understand what composite balustrades are, their purpose, and how your decking area will benefit from their installation.


What is a Balustrade?

Decking balustrades are vertical columns that make up a railing system on decks. There are a variety of balustrade systems, including those that make use of multiple spindles to secure a handrail.

Other balustrade systems may use spaced balustrades with wire or glass in between. These offer a completely different style that gives the terracing or decking area a more open feel.

Decking balustrades provide a stylish safety feature for decking or terracing that has a drop around the edges.


What is Composite?

Composite is a synthetic material that has significant benefits for external use. The man-made material is made by combining wood fibres, plastic, and a bonding agent before being pressed and moulded into a specific shape.

Ecoscape composite products are made up of 55% reclaimed wood fibres that are certified by the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), guaranteeing they are ethically and sustainably sourced.

They are also made up of 45% recycled high-density polyethene, making them an excellent choice for environmentally conscious people.

The plastic in the finished composite material helps to protect the wood fibres and provides a durable, long-lasting finish that won’t suffer from the same issues that traditional timber products do.


What is the Purpose of a Composite Balustrade?

While composite balustrades are a great way to add a different look to a decking project, the most significant use is as a safety feature.

Decking or terracing that has a drop around the edges requires a railing system in order to comply with building regulations.

Safety should be paramount during the planning and installation project, and domestic, residential, and commercial builds will have to ensure the safety of anyone using the deck.

Composite balustrades provide an excellent way to ensure safety and building regulations are adhered to while adding a stylish feature to the decking area.

Ecoscape offers a range of styles and colours that can be matched to the excellent range of composite decking, fencing, and cladding.


What are the Benefits of Composite Balustrades?

Balustrades provide a necessary safety provision, but many people may question why composite makes a great option.

There are many different materials that can make great decking balustrades, including stainless steel, aluminium, and timber.

The cost and upkeep of different materials may suit different needs. The following composite benefits explore the reasons why composite balustrades can make an excellent choice for your garden upgrade.

Improves Safety

The most significant reason you would install composite balustrades, or any other material, in your decking project, is for safety.

Composite products provide strength to ensure they can provide suitable railing support on the decking when installed correctly.


Composite is not only a strong and sturdy material, but it is also extremely durable. This makes it ideal for use in the UK with hot and sunny weather during the summer and cold, wet, and windy weather in the winter.

Being able to withstand all weather conditions is extremely beneficial for external use in the UK. Ecoscape composite products are tested for scratch resistance, UV weathering, thermal resistance, water absorption, moisture resistance, impact resistance, mould resistance, and much more.

This rigorous testing guarantees that Ecoscape’s Clarity composite product range is suitable for external use and will live up to its impressive warranty.

Long Lasting

Ecoscape composite balustrades come with an impressive 20-year warranty. Investing in high-quality composite products can be a great way to ensure longevity, with Ecoscape offering 20-year warranties on Clarity products and 25-year warranties on the Forma range.

Composite products will typically last longer than timber alternatives, and they require significantly less maintenance.

The installation process will play a big part in how long your decking and balustrades last. You must also follow the supplier installation guide to ensure the product warranty is valid.

Well-maintained composite decking and balustrades can last significantly longer than the warranty, making it a worthwhile investment for property owners.


Timber balustrades will require treatment, paint, and regular care, which can be costly and time-consuming.

When you install composite balustrades, you will not have to worry about them rotting, being attacked by wood-boring pests, or suffering from weather damage.

Caring for composite decking and balustrades is a case of keeping them clean. Warm, soapy water and non-abrasive cleaning tools should be used twice a year to keep the materials clean and dirt free.

Power washers can be carefully used on composite at low pressures by holding the nozzle a safe distance from the product and using a fan spray.

Easy to Install

Ecoscape provides detailed installation guides to make the whole process easier. You should only take on a decking project if you have the relevant experience. Alternatively, hiring a recommended professional will ensure a quality finish for your decking area.

The safety of your railing and decking relies on the correct installation process being followed. Ecoscape provides the components and accessories you will need to easily install the balustrades.

Looks Great

The style and colour of your balustrade should complement your decking or exterior colour scheme. Ecoscape offers a range of styles and colours to suit all needs.

If you are spending a significant amount of money on high-quality materials that will last a long time, you will want to ensure it looks good.

Choose between composite, composite and glass, and composite and wire balustrade systems in ash, autumn, charcoal, graphite, and walnut.

Minimise Obstructions

A terrace or decking area should provide the property owner with a versatile space for entertaining, relaxing, and for families to enjoy. While a railing is a necessary safety feature, it can sometimes block light or make the decking area feel penned in.

Ecoscape’s composite and wire and composite and glass systems provide safety while allowing light onto the deck.

This can be extremely beneficial to decks and terraces that look out over gardens or with other great views.

Increase Property Value

A well-installed decking or terrace area can improve the garden area or increase the usable space.

Properties with limited space can benefit from roof terracing to enjoy outside space. Balustrades provide a stylish way for these areas to meet building regulations, and when done properly, this can be seen as an additional selling point for property and increase its value.


Ecoscape Composite Balustrade Systems

Ecoscape composite balustrades are available in a range of colours that match the Clarity decking range. They provide a stylish safety solution for decking and terraces that are easy to install and last for a long time.

The durable composite materials ensure protection from UK weather and provide a low-maintenance solution for your decking area. You will save time and money on treatments and painting to keep your composite decking boards and balustrades safe and looking great.

Each high-quality composite wood plastic balustrade system available at Ecoscape comes with a 20-year warranty and is fully UV-stabilised for long-term colour retention.

Each composite product is rigorously tested to provide superior impact performance and scratch resistance and won’t rot like timber alternatives.

To discover more about Ecoscape’s extensive range of balustrade systems, product specifications, and prices, visit the composite balustrades page today.



Are Composite Balustrades Environmentally Friendly?

Ecoscape offers environmentally friendly composite balustrade systems that reduce waste and minimises harmful production processes.

Ecoscape uses recycled wood that would otherwise be disposed of in landfills. Thousands of tons of plastic are recycled every year as well, making Ecoscape an excellent choice for anyone trying to be as environmentally friendly as possible.

Is it a legal requirement to install balustrades and railing?

Before starting work on your decking area, you should always check with your local planning authority that the plans adhere to building regulations. Failure to do this can result in the decking area being removed, fines, and imprisonment in some cases.

Decks higher than 60 cm require balustrades that are at least 90 cm in height for domestic properties. Commercial properties would require a railing system of at least 110 cm.

Decking balustrades should not have any gaps that would allow a 10 cm sphere to get through them.

Are composite balustrades worth it?

Composite balustrades can be significantly more expensive than timber alternatives. Investing in high-quality materials will still be worth it in the long term.

Not only will you get a stylish finish, but you will benefit from a longer-lasting material.

Over time, you will save time and money on maintenance as you will not have to buy and apply treatments or paint. The durable material won’t be as susceptible to weather and will look great for years when regularly cleaned.

Composite balustrades, as part of an Ecoscape composite decking system, will last for a long time and will not have to be replaced as frequently as timber.

How expensive are composite balustrade systems?

The cost of composite balustrade systems will vary by supplier, quality, and style. The Ecoscape composite balustrade system costs £77.60 per square meter. The composite and glass system costs £128 per square meter, and the composite and wire system costs £99.50 per square meter.

The size of the decking are will determine the overall cost of materials needed to install a full balustrade system.

How do you install composite balustrade systems?

Installing composite balustrade systems is relatively easy as it is supplied in kit form. Each supplier will provide the components, accessories, and detailed installation guide for their own product.

Composite balustrade systems can include the following components; spindles, top and bottom rail, easy-to-install newel posts, post caps, spindle inserts, L-brackets, bolts, screws, and relevant-size galvanized steel inserts.

Always check the component list before starting to ensure you have everything you need to complete the job to the supplier’s specifications.

For more details on how to install composite balustrades, visit Ecoscape’s comprehensive composite balustrade installation guide.

Some balustrades may require the rail spindles cut to a certain size, and it is important you wear the correct PPE for this kind of job.

Failing to use the components and accessories provided or installing the balustrade system in a different way to the supplier guidelines can damage products, result in poor performance that compromises safety, and invalidate the product warranty.


Final Thoughts

Installing a decking area on your property will require a significant investment, so you must be sure the products you invest in are of the highest quality.

Ecoscape offers an excellent range of products with natural wood grain finishes and a range of colours to compliment the exterior of your home, including light grey, brown, and darker tones.

Ecoscape products promise easy installation and different designs to suit contemporary and traditional properties.

As well as composite balustrades, Ecoscape also offers an excellent selection of aluminium and stainless steel balustrade systems.

Balustrades are necessary to ensure the safety of your decking project and to meet building regulations.

Choosing an installation company with the most relevant experience and recommendations will guarantee dimensional integrity, a great finish, and the safety of your decking or terracing project.

As well as providing a safe and attractive addition to your decking, they can also be installed on stairs to provide additional safety and security to handrails.

Gary is the founder and CEO of Ecoscape UK. Gary graduated from Liverpool JM University in 2007 with a 2:1 in Economics. A passion for innovation, design and sustainability, Gary has put to market numerous wpc products/systems, some of which have UK and European registered designs. Outside of work Gary enjoys spending time with his family, the great outdoors and watching Manchester United.