Vinyl is available pre-molded in a variety of shapes, sizes, and lengths, perfect for situations with complex curves and intricate designs, and the modular nature makes vinyl railing systems easy to install. For the environmentally minded, many companies offer vinyl rails made from recycled plastic, the perfect win/win situation.
The main disadvantage of vinyl railing systems is that they lack the inherent elegance of some of the other mediums. Vinyl looks like varnished or painted wood, from a distance, but does not pass closer inspection, earning vinyl rails the reputation of looking cheap and tacky. Modern techniques, and the ability to produce authentic-looking imitation wood, have gone some way towards addressing this imbalance.