Balcony Inspection Course

Hello everyone…I am writing a Balcony Inspection Course and need some photo help. These should be defect-driven photos of balconies, railings, platforms, guardrails, parapets, screen enclosures, supports, and structural connections. You can place your photos here or email them to Thank you in advance.

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Maryland’s new thing is wood balcony railings. The law says that wood balcony railings must meet the requirements of the Maryland Livability Code. The Maryland Livability Code doesn’t say a damn thing about wood or any railings and not much about anything else. More useless garbage legislation. So, we’re right back to the International Building Code which specifies that railings must withstand 200 lbs. in any direction.

2021 IBC:
1607.9.1.1 Concentrated load. Handrails and guards
shall be designed to resist a concentrated load of 200
pounds (0.89 kN) in accordance with Section 4.5.1 of

I’m not sure if this may be helpful or not but I will share.
Last weeks inspection on a 4th floor condo with an upstairs bedroom balcony being at 5 stories.

The balcony flooring had a “water proofing” under membrane with outdoor carpet glued on top. Signs of water pooling and deterioration, possible replacement but how?

Also I had concerns with the aluminum railing being slightly loose in the center to withhold a 200 lb horizontal load.

I know this is related more to commercial, but when you get into situations like this, they can sort of intertwine with each other.

2021 IBC:
1607.9.1.2 Guard component loads. Balusters, panel
fillers and guard infill components, including all rails
except the handrail and the top rail, shall be designed
to resist a concentrated load of 50 pounds (0.22 kN) in
accordance with Section of ASCE 7.

Go Figure! This was really well thought out.

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Looking forward to studying it.

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I will send you some images, Rob. Good luck with your endeavor.