Why Vertical Cable Should Be Your Next Railing

The Benefits of Vertical Cable Railing

If you’ve spent any time in a restaurant, watching TV, or browsing the internet, you’ve seen horizontal cable railing. It’s all over Houzz and HGTV. However, there is another option available that has many similar benefits in terms of achieving the unobstructed view that homeowners are looking for: vertical cable railing.

Key-Link's horizontal and vertical stainless steel cable railing systems both feature the same color selection and rail and post styling, however, there are many differences between the two beyond cable direction. Read on to see why you should consider vertical cable railing system for your next railing project.

Versatility of Aesthetics

Vertical cable railing use on a lake front

For the home or business owner whose top priority is a sleek, modern look, vertical cable railing is the barrier of choice.

Unobstructed views provide an unparalleled ambiance. The vertical cable is so unobtrusive you barely notice it is there. Paired with balusters and caps of your choice from a wide selection, you can design the look of your dreams.

How many ways are there to tailor your railing to the look you are after? You can choose the style of your fascia mount brackets, posts/post wraps, post caps and trim, porch posts and a wide variety of colors. Additionally, you have the option of post and accent lights.

Key-link vertical cable railing can be used in a variety of spaces. Upgrading your outdoor deck? Choose vertical cable railing for a modern touch while maintaining classic ambiance.

Vertical cable railing with ADA handrail used on stairs

Hoping to transform your indoor space? Vertical railing provides safety combined with contemporary lines. Any cable Key-link railing can have an added ADA railing that coordinates perfectly to ensure safety for all customers or patrons.

Vertical cable railing use on a balcony with a view of a pool

Key-link vertical cable railing is all about versatility. With the available baluster options, the railing can be a statement piece that adds to the overall look of the space.

Key-Link Vertical cable Railing is used as interior railing on an indoor balcony

Alternatively, Key-link cable railing can be designed to be inconspicuous and meld into the overall design of your curated indoor space. It is the perfect addition to a minimalist look while maximizing functionality.

Key-Link vertical cable provides a plethora of options to customize the look you want for your space. There are numerous options that will work for any home or business in need of a barrier.

Installation Method

Another benefit to the Key-link vertical railing is the simplicity of installation. Key-link vertical cable railing installation is simple for contractors and DIY enthusiasts alike. This is because Key-Link has pre-installed cable and fittings into the top and bottom rail, creating a “vertical cable panel” for the rest of the installation. Before each section is hung, all the installer does is cut the railing to length and insert the stainless-steel support balusters into the top and bottom railing. Once installed, the baluster serves as a ridged support that allows you to tension the cables properly. The next step is to hang the railing sections and tension the cable appropriately per building code requirements. Key link provides explicit, easy to understand installation instructions and videos to help guide you through the process. No drilling is required for a standard installation.

Both horizontal and vertical cable systems require specific tension. Regardless of which cable system you chose, we suggest purchasing a tension gauge to ensure your cable isn't over or under tension for maximal safety.

For more information and to see an example of installation, check out Key-Link's installation videos below.


Everyone wants a beautiful railing, but more importantly, it serves a functional purpose: provide a safety guardrail for decks, balconies, and stairs. It was previously thought that children couldn’t resist climbing anything that resembled a ladder (“the Ladder Effect”)-this has been proven to be untrue. However, vertical cable railing takes that safety concern out of the equation while maintaining the streamlined look of cable railing.

In terms of safety standards, Key-link’s vertical cable system adheres to the highest standards to prevent code failure. In general, any residential surface raised more than 30 inches requires a guardrail to have a minimum height of 36 inches. Any opening in the guardrail must prevent a 4-inch sphere from passing through. This 4-inch sphere requirement is why it is extremely important that you tension your vertical cable railing properly. Key-Link's installation makes this easy by providing specific instructions that require a specific tensioning pattern (shown below) throughout cable infill to ensure code compliance with IRC (2003) and IBC (2003) codes.

Cost Benefit

These days, everyone is looking for cost-effectiveness when it comes to construction budgets. The cost of materials and labor for vertical cable railing are typically cheaper than its horizontal counterpart. Due to the simplification of the installation as discussed above, installation is a quicker, more efficient process. Additionally, the posts for vertical cable railing share the same 2-1/2-inch post option as our budget friendly Outlook Series with square baluster, which is both smaller and more affordable. Vertical cable railing can be an economic choice when it comes to revamping your space when compared to horizontal cable railing.


Vertical cable railing can be a beautiful, modern addition to any space. When considering cable railing, it is an excellent alternative to horizontal cable railing due to simplicity of installation as well as cost effectiveness. The adaptable options make it a safe, practical choice while allowing for visual accessibility. All of this comes with a limited lifetime warranty from Key-link, whose quality product was voted “Highest Quality Deck Railing” in the Builder Brand survey, so you can purchase with confidence.

For more information about our Key-link vertical cable options, contact orders@insosupply.com for a free quote.