Replacing tall iron railings in old properties may prove to be challenging. After all, these railings are so solid that they require some very strong and dense materials to keep the railings erect. Sometimes it helps to just leave the railings as is, but dress them up a bit. If you are still bent on wanting to replace the railings, here is what you will need to do.
Find the Base Material
If the railings are part of a concrete porch, you already know what you are dealing with: concrete. If the railings are located anywhere else and you cannot readily see what holds them up, get close to the ground and dig around a vertical railing post. They may be stuck in individual blobs of concrete or they may be inserted in iron "shoes," which are iron tubes that fit into the ground and the iron posts slide into the tubes.
If you are dealing with concrete, you will have to bust up the concrete to free the railings. If you are dealing with iron "shoes," then you may need to dig up the "shoes." Sometimes the "shoes" are also inserted in concrete, in which case you will have to dig up the concrete blobs instead of trying to just dig up the "shoes."
Destroy the Base Material
If you do not break up the concrete involved, you cannot remove any railings that are inserted directly into the concrete and replace them with new ones. If you are really lucky, the railings may only be bolted to the concrete. Then you can use a high-torque power driver to remove the threaded bolts that are holding the railings in place. As for "shoes" inserted into the ground without concrete, you can just dig those up. It will be messy, but you can clear out the broken concrete and use the holes for fresh concrete for the new railings.
What to Do With the Railings When They Are Out
When you have successfully removed the railings, you will find that they are very heavy. Iron is a very dense metal, and with railings of this sort, they are often welded together as one single piece or framework of iron. You may want to take a blowtorch and cut them down a bit so that they are easier to handle, lift, and place in the back of a truck or dumpster. You can recycle them as scrap metal, but sometimes building contractors want them for their customers' projects. Ergo, you could sell the iron railings as well. Now you are ready to install your new railings.
To learn more, contact a company like Anvil Iron Works, Inc.
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