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The Evolution of Handrail Design in Hospitals

When it comes to places where handrails are needed most, hospitals quickly come to mind. From patients recovering from surgery to elderly patients in need of added support, easily accessible, safe and hygienic handrails are a necessity in many areas of a hospital. Hospital handrails can frequently be found in stairways, walkways, ramps and hallways. Handrails and grab bars may be necessary for hospital bathrooms as well.
Promenaid handrails are an excellent choice for hospital handrails, especially when railings are needed in unique spaces. Our modular handrails are simple to install, causing minimal disruption to daily activity during installation. Read on to learn more about hospital handrail best practices and how our high-quality handrails can help.

Requirements for Handrails in Hospitals

Hygienic and Easy to Sanitize

In a hospital environment, everything must be easy to clean and sanitize to protect the health of patients and staff. Therefore, choosing a material that is easily cleaned is essential to protecting the safety of all who enter the hospital. With their smooth finish, aluminum handrails are easy to clean and can be sanitized quickly. Promenaid Endura™ anodized aluminum handrails are scratch and chip resistant, ensuring a long-lasting smooth surface that’s easy to clean. This 18-micron anodized layer is the thickest commercial grade.


Hospitals that used to be simple, sterile environments have given way to environments that are welcoming, friendly and promote healing. To accomplish this transition from bare and cold to warm and friendly, hospital designers have been very intentional when choosing materials for each aspect of the design. For example, hospital handrails could be an afterthought to the design, but they are now an integral part of creating a welcoming and friendly environment.

Finding the right balance of beauty and function in a hospital handrail isn’t always easy. It needs to be aesthetically pleasing, and it must also be functional, easily identifiable and easily accessible.

Commercial duty and high-traffic capability

Hospitals must balance their purpose as a healing environment with their needs as a commercial business. Therefore, all of the materials integrated into a hospital design must have the capacity to withstand high traffic and to be easily cleaned and incorporated into the hospital’s design. Promenaid handrails combine functionality with aesthetically pleasing finishes and designs. When you install our hospital handrails, you won’t have to sacrifice design to achieve a safe, functional handrail in any space.

Code compliance

Above all, hospital handrails must comply with Commercial Building Code requirements and adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards. Of course, it’s even better if both of these objectives can be accomplished while maintaining a pleasing aesthetic.

ADA standards require handrails to be between 1-¼ inches and 2 inches in diameter. There are provisions for non-circular cross-sections, but a circular cross-section allows for a power grip (where the fingers flex back toward the palm). This grip is five times stronger than a pinch grip (where the fingers are pinching towards the thumb). A power grip helps prevent falls and injuries resulting from those falls.

Handrails must be 34-38 inches above the stair nosings or floor surface to comply with ADA regulations. This optimal height gives the vast majority of people easy access to the hospital handrail. An additional 12 inches of handrail length is required at the top of a set of stairs, and the equivalent of one-tread depth is required at the bottom.

The ADA also requires that the ends of a handrail either return to the wall or the floor surface to prevent snags on clothing or bags that could throw someone off balance, causing a fall. Promenaid offers modular handrail kits and pieces that simplify the process of creating ADA-compliant handrails in any space. These regulations don’t just apply to stairways; hospital corridor handrails, walkway handrails, bathroom handrails and ramp handrails must also comply with the ADA code and the commercial building code.

The Evolution of Hospital Handrails

Over time, hospital handrails have evolved to become the safest possible version for patients and staff. What began as a metal buffer along the wall, most effective for preventing scuffs and scrapes from equipment, moved into plastic, flat bars with grips at the top, and eventually evolved into the safest option: ADA-compliant handrails.

Metal along the wall

Flat metal barriers along the wall could be used as support for patients, but their primary purpose was protecting the wall from bumps from gurneys and other medical equipment. The flat profile acted as more of a hand rest and guide rather than a handrail that could support someone’s weight in the event that they used it to prevent a fall.

Plastic flat bar with grips at top

Another evolution in hospital handrail design was a plastic bar with a grip at the top. The grip provided more support for those needing additional assistance while traveling down a corridor or hallway. However, without the ability to fully wrap the hand around the bar, fall prevention wasn’t the ultimate purpose of these rails. These handrails also acted as wall protection from gurneys and other medical equipment.


Eventually, the flat crash bar was replaced with an actual handrail bar. These hospital handrails with a circular profile provide the best grip to increase stability and prevent falls. In addition, they meet ADA standards for code compliance and act as a universal design feature. By nature of their design, these hospital handrails are ideal for aiding in fall prevention for the elderly and those with stability issues, such as patients recovering from surgery or weak from illness.

Hospital handrails that meet ADA standards also do double duty as wall protection, ensuring that any bumps from a gurney or other medical equipment won’t scuff or scrape the wall.

Promenaid Medical Handrails Are Perfect for Hospitals

In the realm of hospital handrail suppliers, Promenaid rises above the rest for manufacturing and supplying the ideal hospital handrail. From bathroom grab bars to hospital corridor handrails to handrails that act as railings along balconies or on stairwells, Promenaid provides medical handrails that meet ADA standards and all levels of residential and commercial building code. In addition, our handrails are easily cleaned and enhance the hospital’s design.

Handrail highlights

Promenaid is the leading handrail manufacturer for hospital settings. Our handrails are all ADA-compliant and versatile, making them perfect for stairways, hallways, walkways and ramps. Our Endura™ satin-anodized aluminum handrails are extremely durable and won’t flake or chip, ensuring that germs won’t lurk behind when they’re cleaned and sanitized.

Promenaid offers TrueWood™ wrapped aluminum handrails in red oak or walnut finishes for a more traditional look. These handrails use 50 times less hardwood to manufacture and create a classic look with the strength and durability of an aluminum core.

All our handrails are easy to install, meaning you won’t have to worry about excessive noise, mess or wasted time. The revolutionary brackets snap into the continuous channel on the underside of the handrail, eliminating the need to pre-drill and attach brackets directly to the handrail. A vinyl insert then fills the channel, creating a circular profile perfect for gripping. If you get stuck, we offer a collection of how-to videos and documents to guide you through the installation process.

Speaking of grip, the ADA-compliant diameter of 1-¼ to 2 inches means that Promenaid handrails allow for a power grip, the strongest grip available. Using this grip creates stability and a third point of contact for those with balance issues who need support as they navigate the hospital.

You can feel confident about purchasing our handrails that are manufactured in North America from the highest-quality sustainable materials.

Project Spotlight: Baptist Medical Center, Wolfson Children’s Critical Care Tower in Jacksonville

Project details

Location: Jacksonville, Florida

Products used: Handrails for stairs, hallways and common areas

The Jacksonville Baptist Medical Center needed to accommodate the expanding needs of its community. The building has been undergoing expansions and renovations to better suit the diverse, growing community that it serves. This nationally ranked hospital needed a product that would not disrupt normal operations while meeting code compliance and matching structural aesthetics.

Promenaid’s handrails offered a modular, easy-to-install solution that improved the Baptist Medical Center’s purpose-built spaces. Each area in this hospital had its unique set of accessibility challenges, and the modular nature of Promenaid handrails provided a superior support system with consistent styling across a variety of challenging layouts. The ease of installation saved time and minimized congestion, even when installation crews were working with these products for the first time.

Since installing Promenaid handrails, the Baptist Medical Center has cited them in multiple projects. It’s safe to say that Promenaid handrails were a visual upgrade for the campus and the perfect, practical enhancement they needed.

“I have never seen a handrail system like this before. The product is beautifully sleek and very easy to install. I’ve spec’d them into our next big tower project.” – Matt Bode, Architect, Baptist Medical Center

For more inspiring Promenaid success stories from our clients, check out our testimonials page.

Choose a Superior Handrail for Your Hospital Design

Choosing a superior handrail for your hospital design doesn’t have to be complicated. Promenaid’s elegant and versatile handrails will help ensure the safety of both patients and staff while complementing the welcoming and healing design of the hospital. Check out our customer gallery to get an idea of what Promenaid handrails can do for your space.

Find a dealer near you or order your Promenaid parts online. We offer several simple ways to order our ADA-compliant handrails, including kits and individual parts. Get in touch with us today and find the perfect hospital handrails for your next project.

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5 Ideas to Elevate Your Home Design with Black Handrails

Incorporating handrails into your home means not only increasing the level of safety but also elevating your home design. Installing black metal handrails for stairs and along walls and steps can add a sleek, elegant touch while providing safety and versatility for everyone maneuvering through the home.

Our black aluminum handrails in a satin finish are anodized for superior strength and durability, making them an excellent investment in your home. These sturdy, contemporary handrails add a sophisticated look and enhance your home’s aesthetic. The finish on these handrails will never rust, chip or flake, so they can be installed in any environment indoors or outdoors, wet or dry. No matter where you install them, they will provide superior functionality while maintaining their elegance and style for years to come.

In fact, with our wide selection of high-quality finishes and color combinations, finding the perfect fit for your home’s unique style has never been easier. You can even get creative by mixing different finishes for the handrail, brackets and bends. With three different ways to purchase our stylish railings, including kits and individual components, you’re free to be creative and find the ideal configuration for your space.

round black handrail

In this guide, we are going to focus on the possibilities presented by versatile matte black handrails. Get inspired with the following ideas for how you can incorporate black handrails into your home.

1. Add a Modern Touch to a Traditional Design

modern handrails

Frequently found in older homes, wood stair rails with intricately designed balusters and newel posts are beautiful and elegant. Still, they may not provide the safety people need to avoid falls and confidently maneuver up and down stairs.

When you incorporate a matte black stair handrail into your stairwell, you can provide an added level of support without detracting from the original design of the stairway. In fact, pairing a matte black or satin black handrail with a wood staircase can enhance the design by blending modern and timeless design elements. Peruse our photo gallery for pictures of black handrails to get inspiration from the creative material combinations and styles showcased there.

2. Outdoor Style

outdoor handrail

Outdoor steps can be tricky for ensuring adequate safety when going up or down the stairs. Between rain, snow and other environmental factors, you’ll want to ensure that your outdoor steps are equipped with sturdy, reliable handrails for the utmost safety.

A matte black handrail integrated into an outdoor stair design can provide safety and style. Our handrails are built to withstand the elements and can safely be used indoors and outdoors. In addition, our handrails are good for more than just stairs. For example, a matte black handrail can be integrated into an outdoor design as a deck handrail, protecting the edge of a deck and helping to prevent falls.

3. Add Contrasting Elements to a White Bathroom

black handrails

Because our black handrails are satin anodized, they’re designed to withstand the elements. The act of anodizing enhances the strength of the aluminum and the material’s resistance to corrosion and abrasion, ensuring that the finish won’t flake or chip over time. Consequently, these railings are ideal for looking stylish and creating a beautiful statement anywhere in the home.

Add a sleek black grab bar to your bathroom for added safety and as a beautiful contrast to the white porcelain in the room. You can rest easy knowing that it will look fabulous for years to come.

4. Highlight the Handrail

matte black handrail

Make your black handrail a focal point in your stairwell’s design by pairing a matte black handrail with light-colored wood and paint. This simple combination will elevate what could otherwise be a dull, standard stairway to a chic, modern look. If you want to take the design a step further, pair the matte black handrail with contrasting brackets and fittings. This edgy combination will result in unmatched style and versatility.

5. Classic Black and Silver

black and silver handrails

Black and silver form a classic, timeless combination. With this black indoor handrail design concept, a matte black handrail is paired with silver brackets, bends and ADA wall returns to create the stability needed to navigate up the steps and around a landing.

When set against a wood wall, a black handrail with silver fittings makes a beautiful design statement, while its versatile functionality dramatically reduces the likelihood of trips and falls.

Our beautiful handrails are not only functional but quick and easy to install. In addition, Promenaid makes it simple to comply with ADA requirements and the Residential Code for Handrails.

Purchase a kit for an install-ready package or unleash your creativity when you buy our products individually. You can also find a dealer near you to see our high-quality products in action. Our black stair handrails can go from our warehouse to your job site in as little as 24 hours.

Contact Promenaid today to find the ideal black handrail for your home. We’ll help you choose the perfect handrail to complement the design of your home while providing safety and stability for those who need it.

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A More Versatile Alternative to Handrails from Home Depot

For do-it-yourselfers, Home Depot is often the go-to for home remodeling supplies. But when it comes to handrails, can materials from Home Depot create the modern, sleek and versatile look that is desired in both commercial and residential buildings? Home Depot handrails may also present challenges in terms of meeting ADA regulations and building code requirements.

With limited materials and relatively extensive labor required for installation, Home Depot handrails fall short of handrail perfection. Promenaid offers a more versatile alternative to standard handrails from Home Depot, one that not only lives up to modern design styles but also provides easier installation, innovative design solutions and compliance across residential, commercial and ADA guidelines. This article addresses some of the complications inherent in using standard handrails from Home Depot and other big-box stores, and how you can avoid these pitfalls by choosing Promenaid for all your handrail needs.

Handrails from Home Depot

Labor Intensive Brackets

Both aluminum and wood handrails for steps require labor-intensive installation. Handrails can be cut to length reasonably quickly, but the process of attaching the handrails to the wall can be much more difficult.

In most cases, stair handrail brackets from Home Depot are sold separately from the handrails themselves, so the first step of installing these handrails from Home Depot is to ensure that you’ve purchased enough brackets to accommodate the handrail length. The brackets must then be attached to the railing with screws before being attached to the stud. Attaching brackets to the handrail with screws requires incredibly precise measurements to ensure that they line up perfectly with the studs once the brackets are affixed to the railing.

Architecture Building Wooden Hand Rail

In the event that you mismeasure, the brackets can be moved, but that can leave behind unsightly holes in the handrail. In wood handrails, these blemishes can be filled in, sanded and stained to match the rest of the handrail, but they might never be invisible. However, when using an aluminum railing, the holes can’t be filled in at all and will remain for the life of the handrail.

Less Reliable Strength

Since the brackets are attached to the railing and wall with screws when using handrails from Home Depot, there is a greater chance that the screws can become loose and create an unstable railing over time. Handrail strength comes from two aspects. The first is where the bracket is attached to the railing itself, and the second is where the bracket is attached to the wall at a stud.

The commonly used #8 screws are often too narrow for lasting stability and not long enough to reach through the bracket and comfortably bite into the stud through the drywall. If screws become loose at either point, the handrail becomes unstable, creating a danger for those using it for support. A better alternative is to use #12 screws, at 2-½ inches long, which will achieve a better structural hold.

Lack of Customization for Continuous Installations

Home Depot handrails for interior and exterior applications provide the option of adding handrail-to-handrail connectors, elbows and wall mounts. However, these are sold separately and must be tediously measured and installed. Endcaps are also available. The complexity of installing Home Depot handrails for outdoor steps or interior stairs is further complicated when ADA compliance and building codes are considered.

aluminum handrailsThe Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Residential Building Code require that handrails meet certain specifications. Home Depot aluminum handrails require the homeowner to verify code compliance for the ADA and local and international building code requirements. Unfortunately, many of Home Depot’s wood handrails do not meet the requirements for these codes.

Limited Color Options

Home Depot handrails for stairs offer limited color options. Many of the wood options are unfinished and require staining or sealcoating before installation, which adds additional labor and time to the project. Some of the aluminum options are available in several colors, while others are only available in one color.

Home Depot Materials


Most Home Depot wood handrails are made from unfinished wood such as poplar, pine, white oak, hard maple and red oak. Finished beech is one of the few finished wood options, meaning that the majority of the wood handrails from Home Depot will require additional work to finish with stain, sealcoating or paint. Due to the nature of wood handrails, they are only recommended for interior use, eliminating the possibility of a deck or outdoor handrail in general. Wood handrails also have the added complication of warping over time, requiring frequent replacement.


Some of Home Depot’s aluminum handrails come with brackets; others require the brackets to be purchased separately. These brackets must be manually attached to the handrail with screws.

A Better Alternative to Home Depot Handrails

Benefits of Promenaid

Promenaid is the world’s first handrail to combine beautiful styling, easy installation, code compliance and speed – all delivered to your door in as little as 24 hours.

Elegant Styling

Promenaid’s contemporary handrails are a stylish addition to any residential or commercial space. They seamlessly complement modern architecture or provide an eye-catching contrast to traditional design. A divergence from traditional railings, Promenaid continuous handrails balance smart sophistication without compromising safety or durability.

The satin-anodized aluminum models are available in a range of colors for every need. For example, our Endura™ anodized aluminum handrails can be purchased in satin black, silver, architectural bronze or champagne silver, all of which are guaranteed to never flake or chip.

If you’re looking for a wood handrail, look no further than Promenaid TrueWood™ railings. These unique handrails are creative with an innovative manufacturing process where a layer of genuine red oak or black walnut wood is permanently bonded to an aluminum core. As a result, these unique wood-wrapped handrails have the structural integrity of durable metal with the warmth and natural beauty of real wood. In addition, our TrueWood™ handrails are manufactured with 50 times less hardwood than traditional hardwood railings, making them a sensible and more sustainable option for your building projects.

Promenaid handrail stylesVersatile and Easy to Install

Promenaid handrails are incredibly versatile and fully customizable. Change the slope of your handrails with handrail bends to create a railing as unique as your space. Effortlessly achieve ADA compliance with our flush wall returns and mobility-focused handrail components. From the selection of satin anodized and wood-wrapped finishes to the ease of installation, our handrails will give you peace of mind, style and versatility. Our satin anodized and wood-wrapped handrails create a beautiful and modern continuous handrail that is easy to install with our modular system and can easily and quickly accommodate any change in elevation or turn around a corner.

The reliable and hassle-free handrail brackets from Promenaid come in a variety of powder-coated finishes that enhance the entire railing system’s aesthetics. You can mix and match handrail and hardware colors for a wide variety of finished product styles. In addition, our installation hardware is included with every handrail, so you never have to worry about having the right installation materials.

A Bracketing System With a Twist

The groundbreaking, patented twist lock bracket solution we invented at Promenaid is a versatile alternative to traditional screw-in brackets. Our brackets are designed with three screws on the plate and fit perfectly in line with any stud width. In addition, Promenaid’s patented twist lock bracketing system can safely sustain 500 pounds of weight per bracket, meaning each additional bracket allows the railing system to support an additional 500 pounds.

But the real star of this bracketing system lies in the railing attachment mechanism. With a twist-and-click design that can slide and adjust to any position along the railing, these brackets can be installed at customizable increments for nearly limitless stud spacing requirements. And with our innovative system, you won’t need to worry about unsightly holes from measuring mistakes.

Promenaid pivoting L bracketThe incorporated pivoting design means that you can angle the railing system to just about any slope while leaving the bracket aligned with the vertical stud. These brackets are extremely easy to install and a versatile solution for any project.

Instantly Create A Continuous Handrail

The seamless, pivoting elbows from Promenaid offer unparalleled flexibility. They make continuous handrail installation a breeze, no matter the shape or angle of your stairwell, ramp or hallway. These unique articulating elbows easily adjust to make any corner or slope transition smooth, simple and precise while maintaining aesthetics and structural integrity.

continuous black handrail

continuous silver handrailADA, Residential and Commercial Code Compliant

With Promenaid, you can rest assured that no matter which handrail you choose, it will be ADA, residential and commercial code compliant. We’ve done the work for you, so all you have to do is order the handrails, knowing that they will meet your needs and satisfy the requirements established to help ensure the safety of all who use them.

Integrated Lighting

Integrated LED lighting allows you to go a step further in ensuring safety when travelling on stairs or ramps. The Channelux™ LED lighting system locks into a patented channel and, after installing the vinyl anti-slip extrusion, fits flush to the handrail. This design ensures a sleek, round profile with no added bulk. These dimmable, high-intensity lights create pleasing cones of light that illuminate the stairway or ramp to your exact specifications.

Promenaid handrails are designed to fit your unique needs. As a result, we offer several purchasing options, including kits and individual components. For your convenience, we also offer a selection of how-to videos and guides to make the installation process as simple as possible. You can also use our convenient search tool to locate a dealer near you, and our team of experts is also available to answer your questions and help you find the right Promenaid projects for your project.

If you’re looking for the perfect handrail for your home or business, look no further than Promenaid. Beautiful. Customized. Overnight. Contact us now for more information.

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The Importance of ADA Compliant Grab Bars

In areas where falls are common such as in bathrooms, around toilets and in showers and tubs, installing ADA-compliant grab bars is crucial to ensuring the safety of those using the facilities. Promenaid grab bars are sturdy, safe and ADA-compliant. In addition, our versatile handrails and grab bars are fully customizable and suitable for any space. Read on to learn more about where grab bars should be installed and how to install them safely.

What are Grab Bars?

Grab bars are essentially short sections of handrails that provide added support in areas where it is most needed. For example, they are used to help people guide themselves into and out of bathtubs and showers, use the toilet and navigate through slippery areas.

ADA-compliant grab bars can be installed vertically or horizontally depending on the needs of the application and the requirements in specific areas. Continuous grab bars provide the necessary support to help prevent falls and aid with stability issues in aging populations and areas where children and anyone with mobility issues may need added support. ADA-compliant grab bars are also essential to aid aging-in-place measures as people get older but can still live in their own homes. They are also required in residential homes, such as nursing homes, that house an aging population, and in public toilets and showers.

What is ADA Compliance?

ADA compliance simply means that buildings meet the standards set out by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These safety compliance measures include handrails and grab bars that increase safety on stairs, ramps and bathrooms.

Requirements for ADA Grab Bars

Regardless of where they are placed, grab bars must:

  • Be 1-½ inches away from the wall or support structure.
  • Be at least 1-½ inches away from any objects or protrusions at the ends or bottom of the bar.
  • Be at least 12 inches below any objects or protrusions above the bar.
  • Be installed 33-36 inches above the floor.


Lowering onto and getting up from a toilet can be complicated for those with mobility issues. The ADA addresses these issues by requiring grab bars in at least one stall in a bathroom where compliance is necessary. These locations usually include public restrooms in commercial or residential buildings. Including ADA-compliant toilet grab bars in private residences can also help with aging-in-place and provide added stability.

ADA-compliant grab bars for a toilet must be positioned behind the toilet and on the wall adjacent to the toilet. Grab bars behind the toilet must be at least 36 inches long with 12 inches extending from one side of the centerline of the toilet and the remaining 24 inches extending to the other side of the centerline.

The grab bar on the wall adjacent to the toilet must be at least 42 inches long and begin within 12 inches of the rear wall. It must extend at least 54 inches from the rear wall. The ADA grab bar height should be 33-36 inches above the finished floor.

Children’s Bathrooms

Children’s bathrooms in schools, daycares or other public facilities designed to accommodate children are also required to have at least one stall that meets standards for accessibility set out by the ADA. These ADA grab bars have slightly different specifications designed to accommodate children’s smaller statures.

As there is a wide range in the needs of children as they grow bigger and taller, there are varying requirements depending on the age of the primary users. The grab bars should meet the requirements for general toilets and ADA compliance with the exception of the height from the floor. The proper ADA grab bar heights for children are:

  • 3-4-year-olds: 18-20 inches from the floor
  • 5-8-year-olds: 20-25 inches from the floor
  • 9-12-year-olds: 25-27 inches from the floor


Requirements for bathtubs depend on whether the bathtub includes a permanent seat.

Two parallel grab bars are required along the back wall for bathtubs with a permanent seat. The bottom grab bar must be 8-10 inches from the bathtub rim, and the top grab bar should be between 33 and 36 inches above the floor. Both of these bars should be placed within 15 inches of the head end wall of the shower (the wall opposite the shower controls). They must also be 12 inches or less from the control wall. On the control wall of the bathtub, the grab bar must be at least 24 inches long and positioned at the front edge of the bathtub.

If the bathtub doesn’t have a permanent seat, the same grab bars are required as those with permanent seats with a few adjustments. The back wall bars need to be at least 24 inches long. These bars need to be within 24 inches of the head wall and within 12 inches of the control wall. Grab bars are required on both the head wall and control wall of the bathtub. The bar at the control wall must be at least 24 inches, and the bar at the head wall must be at least 12 inches. Both bars should be installed at the front edge of the bathtub. Grab bars installed on the control wall of the bathtub should be a minimum of 1-½ inches below the controls and 12 inches away from any other protruding object such as a soap dispenser.


ADA shower grab bars are needed in both transfer and roll-in showers. Transfer showers require grab bars installed 33-36 inches above the floor, running along the control and back wall. Roll-in showers need grab bars on the back and side wall opposite the seat. Where no seat is present, grab bars should be installed on all three sides. Regardless of the type of shower, grab bars must be able to support at least 250 pounds of weight. One exception to the general placement requirements is that shower controls can be as close as 1-½ inches above the grab bar as opposed to the 12 inches of clearance required for any other object.

Grab Bar Installation

Because grab bars are often needed in older homes, installation can prove tricky. In addition, fall-prone areas can be located where installation is challenging, and bathrooms can be small. Finding studs and customizing the length of grab bars, particularly those for toilets, is necessary for creating a safe environment.

Choosing a modular grab bar from Promenaid allows you to create continuous grab bars that are practical, safe and easy to install. Promenaid products use innovative Sprocketlock™ technology to create grab bars that can securely fit in spaces other grabs simply can’t. Because our handrails and grab bars are modular, they can be configured to any size, attaching to studs in any configuration for a continuous grab bar that conforms to the shape of your unique space.

If you’re working to make a bathroom and bathing area or any place in your home safer, you want a grab bar that fits your needs and your décor. Promenaid is the grab bar redefined. Elegantly finished to integrate with décor, our handrails are designed to not look like a mundane grab bar, but rather a stylish design element. In addition, our grab bars are so strong that they exceed code requirements and are a literal snap to install.

For a sleek, modern look, choose from several Endura™ anodized aluminum finishes, including champagne silver, architectural bronze and satin black. Or opt for something more traditional with one of our TrueWood™ genuine wood-wrapped aluminum grab bars. Our finishes blend with any décor and provide safety and increased mobility without looking out of place or detracting from their surroundings. Our products are proudly manufactured in North America, utilizing smart and sustainable materials. Not only will our anodized aluminum handrails never chip or flake, but you can also rest assured that our TrueWood™ railings and grab bars will never warp.

Installing grab bars and handrails has never been easier than with Promenaid. Our modular handrail solutions are designed to be simple to install and fit every space. We also offer a collection of how-to videos to make the installation process even easier. Our selection of documents and guides are also at your disposal to help you better understand your Promenaid products. In addition, our team of experts is always available to answer questions and help you find the ideal grab bars and handrails for your space.

We offer several purchasing options and our products are carried by dealers across the country. Use our convenient search tool to find a dealer near you. Contact us for more information on a simple and effective ADA-compliant grab bar.

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6 Problems with Wood Handrails: Choosing a Better Alternative

Choosing the perfect handrail for your home or business means sifting through lots of options. From various profiles to the choice of components, it’s essential to select materials that will allow your handrail to stand the test of time, maintaining its function and beauty. Handrails come in a variety of materials, including aluminum, wrought iron and wood. Wood is a commonly used material but presents many issues not found in alternative handrail materials.

What if we told you that you could have the elegance and sophistication of a wood handrail without the pitfalls? This article will address the common short- and long-term issues with wood stair handrails before introducing you to an innovative, long-lasting and low-maintenance alternative.

wood stairs and wooden handrail1. Often Made of Cheap Materials

Traditional wood handrails are often made of softer woods like pine to cut down on cost. Unfortunately, this also cuts down on strength and durability. Cheaper wood materials are prone to denting and scratching, requiring additional effort and maintenance to keep them looking nice over time.

2. High Warping Probability

Wood is a hygroscopic material, meaning that it is altered by the amount of moisture in and around it. When it loses moisture, it shrinks. When it gains moisture, it swells. Therefore, even indoors, dry or humid air can affect wood handrails, causing them to swell, shrink and warp over time.

Once a handrail is warped, fixing it is very difficult, if not impossible. This tendency to warp means that the majority of wood handrails are not suited for use as exterior wood handrails, though pressure-treated handrails can be used as deck railings.

3. Have to Cut/Miter

A continuous handrail is necessary for safety and stability and to comply with ADA standards and commercial and residential building codes. Special joints are needed to make a wood handrail continuous. You may also need to cut 45-degree angles and match the cuts to turn a 90-degree corner.

4. Reliable, Elegant Hardwoods are Expensive

If you choose to use wood for a handrail, there are more reliable options, such as maple or oak. These hardwoods are more expensive than the softer woods, though they are more durable. Another factor to consider when choosing hardwood is the look they create, which is desirable for a particular design aesthetic – namely, traditional.

Hardwoods generally don’t provide much in the way of structural improvements over softwoods. In addition, because they are primarily found in a pinch grip profile, they usually lack adequate handhold requirements and do not meet ADA guidelines or building codes.

spiraling wooden handrail5. Have to Drill in Brackets

One of the most pressing concerns for wood handrails is the installation process. Brackets and hardware must be attached directly to the wood handrail, presenting several challenges. First, the screws themselves have to be reasonably short, so they don’t puncture the top of the handrail. Because the screws are short, the brackets tend to loosen over time, creating a handrail that doesn’t provide a safe and secure handhold for people using the stairs or ramp.

Another challenge for installation arises when measuring for bracket placement. Because the brackets are screwed into the handrail, measuring the studs’ locations and lining up the brackets on the handrail must be precise. If you mismeasure, the brackets must be removed and repositioned, leaving holes in the handrail. These holes are not only unattractive but can cause splinters and damage the integrity of the wood handrail.

6. Requires Sanding, Sealing, and Staining

Many wood handrail options come unfinished. While this means that you can customize the stain to match existing woodwork or current design, it requires substantial work. To stain a wood handrail, you should first sand it to ensure there are no blemishes, which creates dust and mess. After sanding, staining requires a well-ventilated area and the possibility of multiple coats. Finally, the wood handrail should be sealed to help it maintain its appearance over time.

Even after all that work, a solid wood handrail runs the risk of warping, scratching or denting, leading to repairs or replacement down the road. Overall, this translates to more time and money spent.

Why Promenaid TrueWood Is Better Than Traditional Wood

Luckily, there is a better alternative to wood handrails. Promenaid offers an innovative solution that uses the aesthetic of wood handrails without the maintenance, mess and upkeep of traditional wood handrails. Promenaid’s TrueWood™ handrails are far superior to traditional wood handrails in several ways. TrueWood™ handrails are created by manufacturing a thin layer of genuine red oak or black walnut wood that is then bonded to Promenaid’s aluminum handrail. This process creates a handrail that will never warp and is as hard and durable as aluminum with the traditional beauty of real wood.

TrueWood handrails Unlike traditional wood handrails, a TrueWood™ handrail has all the benefits of aluminum. These benefits include a greatly reduced risk of denting, cracking or warping while maintaining the beauty of wood. In addition, this genuine wood handrail uses 50 times less than the amount of wood that a traditional wood handrail uses, making it a more sustainable option. In fact, our alternative wood handrails are manufactured in North America using sustainable materials.

Another benefit of our TrueWood™ handrails is that installation is fast and easy as a result of our patented channel grip. This innovative channel allows for adjustable bends, clip-in brackets and lighting upgrades for your wood stair handrails. In addition, the channel means that measuring for bracket placement becomes substantially easier than if the brackets need to be screwed directly into the railing. If you mismeasure the bracket placement, you simply turn the twist-lock bracket 90 degrees and slide it to line up perfectly with the stud every time.

Promenaid’s TrueWood™ handrails can also be custom cut to whatever length you need, to the inch, in contrast to traditional wood handrails that come in pre-cut sections that must be cut to length. However, if you need to cut a TrueWood™ handrail on-site for installation, it can be cut with a standard miter saw as easily as cutting a 2-by-4 wood stud.

Like our Endura™ anodized aluminum handrails, our TrueWood™ handrails are ADA-compliant and meet the most stringent residential and commercial building code requirements.

We’ve created a series of educational training videos for your convenience to help you better understand the simplicity of Promenaid handrail installation. Additionally, we have a collection of documents and guides to help streamline the installation process. Finally, if you’re ever stuck, feel free to reach out to one of our experts for troubleshooting assistance.

Choosing our better, more durable alternative to traditional wood means cutting down on installation time and maintenance over the life of the handrails. With TrueWood™, you’ll no longer need to worry about warping, whether you install our handrails inside or outside. Beautiful and durable TrueWood™ handrails will meet your needs and look incredible doing it.

With several convenient purchase options, including kits and individual components, you’ll be on your way to the handrails of your dreams in no time. You can also use our search tool to locate a dealer near you. In some circumstances, our handrails can go from our warehouse to your job site in as little as 24 hours. Most orders placed before noon EST will be processed within 24-48 hours, and all shipments will be en route to you within two days of purchase.

Contact a team member at Promenaid today for more information on the best wood handrail solution for your space.

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Ramp Handrails: What You Need to Know | Meeting Code Requirements with Promenaid

ADA-compliant handrails for ramps must meet specific criteria to ensure the safety of those using the ramps. While ramp use is intended for those using wheelchairs or people with stability or mobility issues that would prevent them from using the stairs, ramps are commonly used by everyone, including children. Therefore, meeting ADA requirements not only makes ramp usage safer for the intended users, but everyone can benefit from the added safety.

Promenaid handrails and grab bars are designed with ADA code compliance in mind. Our ADA-conforming handrails make it simple for you to navigate the installation process and comply with the necessary regulations to make your ramps as safe as possible for all users.

There are many misconceptions about what makes an ADA-compliant ramp handrail. For example, are ADA-compliant handrails required to have a “D” loop terminal, or is it sufficient for the handrail to extend beyond the ramp in any shape? While it’s still essential to verify your local building ordinances, you can be sure to find the appropriate handrail fixtures at Promenaid, no matter what you’re looking for. And, with our extensive collection of instructions and how-to guides, you’ll have the confidence and know-how to install a ramp handrail that not only meets ADA regulations but looks elegant and sleek as well. Read on for a brief rundown of what ADA-compliant handrails should look like and how you can achieve these standards with a handrail from Promenaid.

ADA Ramp Handrail Requirements

Railings on Both Sides

An ADA ramp handrail must meet specific requirements for safety and stability. For example, on a ramp with a rise greater than 6 inches, a continuous handrail must be included on both sides of the ramp and run along the entire length, including on switchbacks or doglegs.

In addition, the top surface of the handrail must be 34-38 inches above the walking surface of the ramp and must be a consistent height along the entire length of the ramp. Alternatively, if the ramp is used in an area that primarily serves children, such as an elementary school, day care or play area, the ADA ramp handrail should be 20-28 inches above the ramp. The handrail must then extend 12 inches horizontally beyond the slope’s end at both the ramp’s top and bottom. This extension must then return to the guard, wall or floor to prevent clothing or bags from snagging on the ends of the handrails.

Single-Sided Rail

ADA ramps that have a rise of 6 inches or less may have a handrail on one side only. The top surface of the ramp handrail must be 34-38 inches above the ramp and continuous along the entire length of the ramp. If the rise is greater than 6 inches, then an ADA-compliant handrail is required on both sides.


Including a midrail is not part of meeting ADA compliance, but it is crucial if the ramp is in an area that primarily serves children. To prevent entrapment, the midrail must be at least 9 inches below the single, primary rail. The midrail on an ADA ramp handrail should be 20-28 inches above the ramp and run parallel with the single rail above it to provide extra support for children.

single sided railEdge Protection

Continuous edge protection to prevent canes or wheels from going over the edge of the ramp is mandatory for all ramps requiring handrails. Edge protection can take the form of a curb, as shown above, or a barrier. The space between the ramp surface and barrier must be less than 4 inches.

Slope Change

Ramps are required to have 12 inches of horizontal railing at the top and the bottom of the ramp. To do this, the handrail requires a slope change to transition to horizontal. This extension doesn’t need to travel in the same direction as the handrail and can turn corners if necessary, as long as it provides added support when transitioning on and off the ramp’s surface.

ramp with handrailsMeet ADA Requirements with Ease

Promenaid makes installing handicap ramp handrails simple with our elegant wall returns, patented “L” brackets and adjustable elbows. Our ramp handrails can be purchased as part of a kit or assembled piecemeal to fit your ramp’s unique specifications. To see our handrails in action, find a dealer near you.

Meeting code requirements with Promenaid is easy. No matter what handrail you choose, you can rest assured that it will meet ADA requirements as well as those set out by the commercial and residential building codes. Our company was founded to increase mobility with attractive handrail solutions. Our ramp handrails are proudly manufactured in North America using sustainable materials and can go from our warehouse to your job site in as little as 24 hours.

Contact a representative at Promenaid today for more information on ramp handrail solutions.

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How to Measure for A Basic Handrail Installation

Measuring your space for a stair railing is a reasonably simple task, yet it still requires precision for your finished handrail to provide reliable support and optimal fall prevention. Knowledge of a few basic building code requirements and understanding what to measure will remove much of the stress that generally accompanies building or renovation projects. In this article, we’ll discuss the required measurements for residential and basic ADA-compliant handrails on stairs.

Elements to Measure

Regardless of the building type, proper handrail installation requires you to understand how to measure for length and height of the handrail. In addition, when installing a handrail that conforms to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines, measuring the stair slope angle is also required.

Measuring Handrail Length

The length of the handrail’s sloped section is measured on a line running along the nosings of all steps. This line starts at the nosing of the top landing and runs to the floor at the lower end. This line is called the “nosing line.” ADA-compliant stair handrails, which are mandatory in commercial settings, must run the entire length of the nosing line. In addition, these regulations require a 12-inch horizontal section of railing at the top of the stairs, starting at a point directly above the upper nosing.

In residential settings, handrails must conform to some but not all elements of the ADA guidelines. In these settings, the railing must be continuous, starting at the nosing of the upper landing and extending at a minimum to the nosing of the lowest step or “riser.” In addition, for optimal safety, the handrail should run the entire length of the nosing line wherever possible.

Promenaid continuous handrails are designed to be ADA-compliant, making it safer and simpler to go where you need to go.

Measuring Handrail Height

The top surface of the handrail should be between 34 and 38 inches above the floor or above the nosing line. Some installation guides suggest marking this height by measuring from the nosings of the steps. Because brackets should be fastened to studs or an equivalent solid structural member in the wall, it’s helpful to know where the nosing line is, since the studs are unlikely to line up precisely with the steps.

Note: In areas where children will be the primary handrail users, the maximum handrail height is 28 inches. If there is an adult handrail present, there should be a minimum of 9 inches of clearance between the two handrails.

Measuring for Stair Slope

Determining the stair slope is required to create the correct transition angle between the horizontal and sloped sections of an ADA-compliant handrail. If the slope is between 30 and 34 degrees, you should be able to use a standard 32-degree bend. If not, you may require a custom combination of bends or a Promenaid Universal Bend.

In order to calculate the slope of your stairs, measure the rise of the steps and the tread run. Then, you can simply use the table below to find the slope – also called stair pitch or angle of inclination – in degrees. Note that the angles where a standard 32-degree bend can be used are shown in grey.

A smartphone app can also be used to measure the stair slope. Position the long edge of your smartphone along the nosing line, or if a molding runs parallel to the stair slope, you can measure its angle instead. For ADA regulations for ramp handrails, check out this handy guide to ramp handrails.

How to Install a Handrail

Once you’ve measured your space, you’re ready to learn how to install a handrail. Promenaid handrails are uniquely simple to install. Our handrails and grab bars are highly versatile and can be adapted to fit almost any space. Available in a variety of colors, our Endura™ anodized aluminum handrails are scratch and chip resistant, ensuring that your railings look their best for years to come.

For a traditional railing look, check out our TrueWood™ handrails. These classic handrails are made with a sturdy aluminum core wrapped in real wood. Requiring 50 times less hardwood to manufacture than traditional wood railings, our TrueWood™ handrails are highly durable and deliver the same level of strength as our aluminum-finished railings.

We offer a selection of how-to videos for every aspect of installing our innovative railings. Our documents page and blog are also excellent resources during the handrail installation process. If you run into an issue that isn’t covered by these resources, our team of experts is always available to answer questions and assist you.

Still unsure about how to measure for your project? Contact us at Promenaid and talk to an expert. We’ll help you design the perfect handrail for your home, business or your customer-beautiful, code-compliant, easy to install and delivered in as little as 24 hours. Our handrails can also be purchased through local dealers. (Find a dealer near you with our convenient search tool.) Whether you’re shopping for a kit or a handrail component, Promenaid is here for all of your handrail installation needs.

Stay tuned to this space for more handrail-measuring content!

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The Best Option for Church Handrails

A church’s congregation is usually made up of a variety of people. As the leader of your congregation, you undoubtedly work hard to serve the needs of everyone. When it comes to the safety of your flock both in and outside the church, there’s a simple solution: Promenaid offers a way to provide safe assistance for each member, from the youngest to the oldest. Installing handrails in various high-need areas in and around the church can ensure that the congregation travels to worship safely with the support they need, regardless of age or ability.

Walking Assistance and Churches

Installing handrails in certain areas inside and outside of the church building provides walking assistance to and from the building. Helping ensure that your congregation members can attend services safely is just one more way to serve them. When you install an ADA-compliant handrail from Promenaid, you can be confident you’re getting a high-quality product that will last. Our handrails are proudly manufactured in North America and are available in a variety of finishes to suit your church’s aesthetic needs.

Church Handrail Location Needs

Church handrails can be installed in a variety of areas inside and outside of the church, including:



Ramps leading to a stage or into the sanctuary are necessary architectural elements that help those with mobility issues navigate your church safely. Handrails installed on indoor ramps provide safety while complying with ADA requirements and building codes, making your place of worship accessible to all.


Exterior ramps, in addition to stairs, make the church accessible to everyone regardless of their age or ability level. However, outdoor ramps may present added challenges in wet or slippery conditions. A reliable handrail can help to mitigate these conditions and provide added safety to your congregants.



Depending on the church’s layout, stairs may be needed to access the altar, choir area, raised seating, basement, etc. When stairs are present indoors, installing a handrail on interior stairways is essential for the congregation’s safety.


Weather conditions significantly impact the ability of some people to make it to church. Incorporating handrails in outdoor areas can help more people feel comfortable attending church services. With sturdy outdoor handrails in place, wet or icy conditions can be traversed with increased comfort and ease.


Handrails can be installed in a stage area to help performers navigate around the area. Church stage handrails can improve safety for performers and guest speakers at your congregation.


Balconies are equipped with a guard that prevents people from falling over the edge. Whether this guard is a wall or railing, it may be too low to provide adequate safety in some cases. Installing a handrail as a secondary safeguard helps ensure the safety of those on the balcony, whether they are watching the service or singing in the choir.

Wall-mounted and Free-standing

Depending on the location, a church handrail can be mounted to an existing wall to provide support. In other cases, the handrail may need to be free-standing to create necessary support. Promenaid offers modular handrail kits and pieces designed to be as versatile as possible. As a result, our handrails can be installed anywhere and in any configuration.

Features of the Best Handrails

Promenaid delivers everything you need in a church handrail. If you want an all-in-one solution that’s easy to install, look no further than our beautiful DIY railing and bracketing products. From flush wall returns to integrated LED lighting, our handrails and grab bars are made to be simple to install. Thanks to our collection of how-to videos, you can feel confident installing a Promenaid handrail in any space.


A church handrail will see a lot of use over its lifetime. Between church services every Sunday, Bible studies, Sunday school and various church programs, many people come in and out of the church throughout the week. As a result, the handrail you select needs to be sturdy and able to stand up to a lot of wear.

Promenaid aluminum handrails feature our Endura™ anodized finish, which is scratch and weather resistant. This finish creates a smooth satin luster that will never flake or chip, ensuring a beautiful finish for years to come. Our anodized aluminum handrails come in satin black, silver, champagne silver and architectural bronze finishes. This variety of colors can help your handrails and grab bars blend with any interior decorating scheme, whether you hope to conjure the look of a brass handrail for church or something sleek and modern.

Promenaid’s unique TrueWood™ handrails are manufactured by bonding a thin layer of genuine wood around the patented Promenaid aluminum core. Since the aluminum reinforces the wood, it is essentially dent and scratch resistant. In addition, this innovative technology creates a wood handrail that uses 50 times less hardwood to produce and will never warp, unlike solid wooden handrails.

Our support brackets and hardware are manufactured from die-cast zinc and will withstand up to 500 pounds of force in any direction, ensuring added safety for everyone in the congregation.

ADA Compliant

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessibility has specifications to ensure handrails are safe regardless of a person’s mobility. Promenaid has explicitly designed our handrails to exceed ADA requirements, making them safe for everyone.

Visually Striking

Available in five beautiful aluminum finishes and two TrueWood™ options, we offer visually striking handrails that integrate seamlessly into any design. Many churches choose a finish that integrates into their existing design, but choosing a contrasting color can create a beautiful design statement as well. Whichever finish you choose, a Promenaid handrail will be beneficial for those older congregation members as they look for support.


Each church is unique, and many have been standing for a long time, so integrating handrails into a church’s architecture can present challenges. From updating an older building to designing a new one, handrails need to be versatile in order to meet design needs, space constraints and aesthetic preferences while also providing safety.

Depending on the situation, a church handrail may need to be wall-mounted or free-standing. Promenaid provides options for both. Wall-mounted handrails use an adjacent wall for support and can be mounted directly to the studs. Our patented articulating elbows make it easy to change the slope or turn any corner.

Free-standing handrails can be installed anywhere a handrail is needed, regardless of whether or not there is an adjacent wall for support. The Promenaid Sprocketlock™ system lets you customize free-standing handrails to meet all of your design needs.


One of our more unique features is our handrail illumination system. Using our proprietary LED lighting that locks into the patented channel, you can easily add custom lighting to your church handrails. Illuminating handrails is a visually attractive and practical way to increase safety and accessibility wherever handrails are needed.

Easy and Quick Installation

One of the best things about Promenaid handrails is that they can be delivered in no time – even as fast as overnight – and are quick and easy to install. Our handrails can go from our warehouse to your job site in as little as 24 hours, and most orders placed before noon EST will be processed within 24-48 hours.

Promenaid brackets easily lock into our patented handrail channel and attach to the stud to create a sturdy and stylish handrail. Our products are so easy to install that your church handrails can even be installed as a DIY job for members of the congregation. Don’t forget to check our selection of documents and guides to learn more about our handrails and identify the best Promenaid products for your space and project.

Make the Smart Choice for Your Church

Whether you’re looking for added safety on a ramp, stairway, stage or balcony, look no further than Promenaid’s stylish aluminum handrails. Contact Promenaid today to discuss your needs and to help design your custom handrail system.

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Interior Handrail Design Ideas: Get a Grip on Placement Options

Handrails are essential to creating stairways, hallways, and even bathrooms that put safety first. And the great news is that there are beautiful and versatile interior handrail systems that mean you won’t have to compromise design and style to create a safe environment.

Update and add safety to older or decorative designs

Older buildings have a style and charm all their own, but many old designs don’t create the safest conditions. Ornate and out-of-date stair railings many times don’t meet current building standards or ADA regulations. Pairing the original stair railings with modern interior metal handrails can be a quick and simple upgrade that benefits those travelling up and down the stairs.

interior metal handrailUsing an interior metal handrail with a more traditional wooden stair rail creates an additional element of safety without compromising the traditional design. The addition of a more contemporary metal handrail in a Satin Black finish creates options for climbing or descending the stairs depending on support needs.

Turn corners with ease

Integrating a handrail into an existing design sometimes calls for creating a turn around a wall. A Promenaid handrail can smoothly turn a corner with ease by using a patented articulating bend that can to smoothly accommodate any corner or change in slope. 

Creating depth with a two tone handrail adds a stylish element to the handrail design. Brass and Bronze is a classic combination that can complement modern or contemporary decor, so pairing an Architectural Bronze handrail with Antique Brass bends works beautifully.

Use colors to add style

Satin Black interior handrailChoosing a Satin Black interior handrail that matches a bold wall color choice serves to enhance the design of the stairway. Adding stairway lights further increases the level of safety while also adding an elegant ambiance.

A Promenaid TruWoodTM handrail is paired with Silver bends and wall returns to create a continuous look that also blends finishes. The genuine Oak bonded to the durable aluminum core creates a pleasing contrast to the shine of the hardware and bends.

Add stylish safety to bathrooms

Bathrooms are notoriously slippery environments that can be hazardous to those with balance issues and even those without issues. Integrating a handrail into a bathroom design can create safety measures without compromising the bathroom design. A stunning Satin Black creates a contemporary feel without looking commercial or clinical.

Adding a handrail to the interior of a shower provides needed support while navigating a shower. Choosing a black finish complements the black bathroom fixtures, creating continuity while adding safety. Perfect for wet conditions, Promenaid handrails are the perfect combination of style and function.

Create a continuous handrail on a landing

continuous handrailWhen creating a continuous handrail from the bottom to the top of a stairway, it may be necessary to change direction and slope to travel around a landing area. This handrail uses the Promenaid’s patented articulating bends create a seamless and continuous railing that provides uninterrupted support.

This handrail climbs the stairs, turning seamlessly on the landing, creating a stunning way to support those climbing or descending the stairs.

Utilize both sides of the stairway

On a steep, narrow stairway, handrail support is essential to safely navigating up and down the stairs. Including a handrail on both sides of the stairway ensures anyone with a condition that impairs mobility or balance or weakens one side will always be able to have a firm grip on one or both handrails whether climbing or descending the stairs.

These contemporary steps are much easier to climb thanks to the handrails incorporated on each side. The Champagne Silver finish not only creates a durable handrail that won’t chip or flake, but it integrates into the minimal contemporary style of the home.

“A true handrail is designed with fall prevention in mind, complies with the ADA guidelines, and makes stairways, walkways, hallways, and bathrooms safer, not only for those with mobility issues but for people of all ages and abilities.” ~ Chuck Waltman, Houston Home Remodeling Pros

No matter the need, Promenaid’s interior handrail systems can be customized to provide safety and style that integrates beautifully into modern, traditional, and contemporary decor.

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How to Choose the Best Multi-Family Handrails

Choosing a handrail for a multi-family building requires attention to detail and an awareness of handrail requirements for code compliance. From common spaces to dwelling units, ensuring that residents have the best handrails is a priority for safety and stability.

Handrail Requirements for Multi-Family Stairwells

The following requirements are laid out in the International Building Code and ADA Standards for Accessibility.

Support and Stability

Multi-family handrails must be able to withstand a linear load of 50 lbs. per linear foot and a concentrated load of 200 lbs. They are not permitted to rotate in their fittings in order to provide the most support and stability possible.


Lighting is not required on handrails, but including it in the handrail design is definitely something to consider for multi-family handrails. Not only does including lighting add an element of safety, but it also increases ambiance by providing a soft, guiding light as people maneuver a stairway or ramp.

Handrail Height

Handrails are required to be installed between 34” and 38” as measured from the stair nosings (the edge of the stair tread) for the length of the handrail.

Continuous Capabilities

In common spaces and in dwelling units, handrails must be continuous for the entire length of the stairway. This includes as the handrail turns corners and changes elevation. This is one of the biggest challenges when installing a handrail since many handrails lack the ability to connect to one another.

The handrail gripping surface cannot be interrupted by newel posts or other obstructions unless they are within a dwelling unit. Handrails in dwelling units can be interrupted by a newel post at a turn or a landing. The use of a volute, turnout, starting easing, or starting newel is also allowed over the lowest tread.


The circular cross-section of a handrail must be 1 ¼”-2”. A handrail that is not circular must have a perimeter dimension between 4” and 6 ¼” with a minimum cross-sectional dimension of 1” and a maximum of 2”. A circular cross section creates the strongest grip, known as the power grip.

Installation on Both Sides

Handrails must be installed on both sides of a flight of stairs consisting of two or more risers. In dwelling units that fall into Group R-2 and R-3, handrails are only required on one side, but many choose to install them on both for added safety.


Handrails on stairways and ramps are required to return to a wall, guard, or the walking surface. They can also be continuous to the handrail of an adjacent flight of stairs or ramp.

When the handrail terminates, it must extend horizontally at least 12” beyond the top riser. At the bottom riser, the handrail must continue to slope for the depth of one tread and return to either the wall or the floor.

Additional Handrail Installation Areas


Guardrails are required along open-sided walking surfaces that are greater than 30” off of the ground. They have the same strength requirements as handrails though location requirements differ. Group R-2 and R-3 have slighting different guard requirements.

Guardrails are required to be at least 42” above the walking surface. This means that if a guard is located on a stairway or ramp, a handrail must also be installed between 34” and 38”. Handrails are permitted to terminate into the guardrail.


Decks require guardrails if they are more than 30” off of the ground. For additional support and guidance, a secondary handrail can be added. Handrails are required for stairs and ramps leading up to a deck.


Ramps with a rise greater than 6” are required to provide a handrail on both sides. These handrails must comply with the same requirements as those on stairways. They must also have “edge protection” in the form of a curb or railing no more than 4” above the walking surface of the ramp.

Grab Bars

Grab bars, essentially shorter sections of handrails, are generally found in toilet and bathing facilities. While not required by the International Building Code, requirements for grab bars are laid out in the ADA accessibility standards. 

Shop For Beautiful Multi-Family Handrails with Promenaid

Promenaid handrails can be customized to fit your space perfectly, and the lengths are easily connected to one another using our Sprocketlock™ system or trimmed with a standard miter saw. The simple turn of a hex key allows independent collars and bends to be assembled in different combinations and can swivel to create any angle.

The extruded channel not only supports our clip-in patented bracket system for easy installation, but it also provides a space to run wires for our clip-in LED lights. Adding lighting to a handrail increases visibility and safety, as well as creating a relaxing aesthetic.

Whether you’re choosing handrails for dwelling units or outdoor spaces such as stairs or decks, Promenaid makes the ultimate code compliant handrail.