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Remodeling and Home Design

What is a Ball Code?

The 4" or 6" delineator refers to the "maximum diameter" of a hypothetical ball that could be used to measure the maximum gap between balusters. A ball is used in order to mimic the size of a small child’s head. Theoretically, if a child’s head can pass through the opening a chance that a child’s body can pass through also exists. Therefore, a falling hazard exists. If a ball will not fit through the widest gap then a small child’s head should not be able to fit through the gap either. Though a falling hazard does not exist, it is recommended to use a Ball Code installation around pool areas where drowning hazards exist.

Below is a pictorial representation of the two primary ball codes: 4" and 6", compared with Stone Legends standard spacing of 12" on center. The balustrade unit chosen for the illustrations is Otterwood1. The actual spacing to meet ball code requirements for each unit is shown in the table on page 4.

Stone Legends is not responsible for installation of any kind and will not determine baluster spacing for you. Check local building codes for all Ball Code requirements pertaining to your specific installations.

Ball Codes

Standard Installation
6 Inch Ball Code 4 Inch Ball Code