How to Protect Corners of Walls Safely

A wall is prone to damage. While any area of the wall is susceptible, the corner of walls can be particularly prone as they are most likely to experience contact from anything moving by. Warehouses, healthcare settings, mixed-use buildings, and residential homes can benefit from wall protection. Protecting corners of walls is all about anticipating the need to correct the damage before it occurs. Here are a few of the most effective approaches you can take.

1. Corner Guards

Metal corner guards are a hard material that wraps around the corner where two walls meet. It’s the best way to protect the corner of a wall. Should an accidental impact occur, a corner guard will be there to absorb the blow. This should limit the likelihood of a dent, chip, or scratch underneath or around the corner guard. It may even protect the wall entirely. They can be manufactured from plastic, vinyl, or metal, as well as other options, and put on any wall type.

2. Bumper Guards

A bumper guard is sometimes referred to as a crash rail. They are often made from metal. These aren’t just made for the corner of the wall but can protect the entirety of a wall. They protrude from the wall by an inch or two. They are fairly modern looking and easy to clean.

There are bumper guards made from plastic as well. They are ideal for kitchens, labs, and hallways, with lightweight items. They work to a degree but aren’t as effective as corner guards, which apply directly over the corner of the wall.

3. Handrails

Handrails can be used from a protective standpoint. They must be able to maneuver around corners. You may want to select a functional handrail and accommodate people who require it for support. There are a few different handrails, from power grip handrails to pinch grips.

They will offer some corner protection but not much. They may require additional protection from either a sheet or a corner guard to work in the form of wall corner protection.

4. Kick Plates

Many of us have seen kick plates in action. They are put on doors and walls to protect them from scuffs and scratches at a lower height. They are attached to the lower 1-2 feet of a door, wall, and around the corner and work at that vantage point.

Unfortunately, they don’t protect the remainder of the wall. For top-to-bottom protection or expanded corner wall protection, you will need to employ a corner guard or material sheet, not a kick plate.

5. Material Sheets

A vinyl or metal sheet is inexpensive and can protect walls in a big way. A vinyl sheet is perfect across large areas. Vinyl is stain-resistant and scratch-resistant, easy to maintain, and will cover a wall in its entirety.

Metal, by comparison, is also an excellent wall cover, offering durable protection and likely to sustain many impacts that would otherwise result in damage. For flat walls, they’re a great investment, but for corners, they can spell trouble.

6. Flat Sheets on a Corner

Unfortunately, any flat vinyl or metal sheet that may be great for flat walls doesn’t protect the corner. An impact on the corner is at the weakest point of a sheet – the edge. Let’s say something swings at the corner. That’s a different impact than something coming at a wall flat.

Though having a sheet is better than not having one, it does not eliminate the potential damage. A corner guard is designed for a corner. A sheet is designed for a flat surface.

7. Tape-On Corner Guards

Here is an alternative type of corner guard. The average corner guard installs with glue or screws. It’s affixed to the wall and designed to not be movable. A tape-on corner guard is a tape-on metal. It places easier on the wall and does not involve any glue or anything.

Installation is quick and simple and works for small spaces such as a home. Premium corner guards may be better in a warehouse or workspace. They’re built well and are permanently installed.

8. Metal Corner Bead

A metal corner bead is a type of material used in drywall construction. Its primary function is to make a corner look crisp and professional. A metal corner bead is nailed to the outside corner, and a joint compound is applied over it. While they do add a crisp aesthetic, they also reinforce the corner. They will work to make the wall corner less prone to dents and other types of damage. They do that well.

However, they can be a little thin. If an outside corner or wall corner is in an environment where damage is more likely possible, corner guards may be a better choice.

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