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20

How about using baby gates to keep your baby off the stairs entirely?


15

First of all, since it sounds like this could be considered "occupied space", you better check your local building codes and/or with your local inspector to see what is allowed. Most codes have specific requirements for stairs, and in some jurisdictions strange things like spiral stair cases may not be allowed or may require specific approval because of ...


14

If it's structural (the tread/risers are supported by it), it's called a stringer. If it's not structural, it's called skirting (or simply a skirt). Source (PDF)


11

The number one reason for creaking floors, staircases and furniture is they are assembled using regular nails. The problem with regular nails is the following. When you put load onto any board in your assembled staircase the board bends slightly and this causes it to slightly pull the nails at the places where the board is connected to other parts. After ...


11

The Stairway Manufacturing Code Association published the International Residential Code (PDF Link) in 2006 which tells you just about everything you could ever want to know about stairs, including: minimum headroom depth (6' 8") minimum tread depth (10") maximum rise (7.75") maximum tread depth variability (3/8") maximum rise variability (3/8") maximum ...


9

Not what you asked, but for safety the most important thing, even more important IMO than getting the right rise and run, is that every step is consistent. Varying as little as 1/4 inch in rise will make even a ballerina fall on her face if she's running up the stairs.


8

The standard is usually 34" to 38". Check your local building codes - apparently some cities specify exactly 36". The International Residential Code covers just about everything you could want to know about stair standards.


8

You need to have a graspable (grippable) handrail... in other words something that you can get your hand around and hold onto if you fall off the steps. The 2x6 is too big for your hand to grab around and does not qualify. Standard handrail brackets usually look something like this: Also see this article (Deck Stair Handrails) for a picture of a ...


8

The general rule (in the US) is 7-11 (a 7 inch rise and 11 inch run). More exactly, 7 3/4 rise and an 11 1/2 inch run, although some people will use a run of as little as 9 inches. You can find some more information here as well on other stair-related dimensions.


8

If you're using an extension ladder, they sell Ladder leveling feet. I also stumbled across this product The PiViT Ladder tool, though you'd need two for a step ladder.


7

I'd go ahead and pull it up and see what you've got. It sounds like it's in pretty poor shape so you're going to have to get rid of it either way. Depending on how the carpet was installed you'll probably find tack strips that look something like like this: You might also find staples -- I don't know if this is common but our installer used a staple gun ...


7

The height is generally from the front of the tread straight up to the top of the handrail. To get the brackets at the right height, you'll need to do some measuring and marking. Measure the bracket top to bottom (if its height isn't already stated in the literature). You can allow for the thickness of the handrail by resting it on the stairs and ...


7

Move the anchors to a stud and attach them with long screws. Use a stud finder (preferably with a deep scan capability since you mentioned plaster) to locate your studs. Or you can drill some small test holes since you already need to patch the wall. Don't use drywall screws, you need something with more shear strength. I wouldn't use anything less than a ...


6

Nope. That's for the top of the staircase where the floor runs out. Stairs need to be extremely stable. Any movement at all can lead to disaster. Your best bets are to refinish (tough) or carpet.


5

Since the house is 100 years old, the stairs are probably constructed using a tapered groove and wedge system. The stringers typically had tapered dados cut into them to receive the stair treads. Wedges were tapped in with glue underneath the tread to lock the tread into place. Check if this is the case by looking under the stairs. Hopefully the ...


5

I had oriental carpeting which wore along the front edge of the steps. My clever Mom told me what they used to do in the old days was to move the carpet a half step so the worn part would then be the crease on the next step down....so I did it and it worked perfectly, I still have that nice antique carpeting which I love and was cut to order, but it's not as ...


5

The best way to deal with a low rail for toddlers is to add a second one. That way adults won't be surprised to find a rail at the low end of the range, and toddlers won't have to reach up. In theory you could remove the second rail when your children are taller. In my experience, parents of 8-year olds sometimes don't get around to removing inoffensive ...


5

Much like DA01 said, a ceiling fan generally acts to circulate air within a particular space of the home. This evens out the temperature of the air in the room by preventing "stratification" (where the air settles into noticeable "layers" so it's warmer at head height than at the floor), and also provides an illusion that the air is cooler by constantly ...


5

It looks to be exactly like a garage door. I take it lowering the stairs tensions a spring attached to the drums so it is easier to raise. Exact same system as sectional garage doors. The springs can be very dangerous to someone unaware of their potential. I think you should look for someone experienced with sectional garage doors, they will understand this ...


5

A few options. 1 - Grip/tread tape (easy/cheap but maybe ugly): 2 - Rubber treads (modern/industrial look): 3 - 'tread/grip' additive for paint (easiest to 'blend in' to decor): 3b - DIY 'tread/grip' additive:


5

Spindles (also called balusters) on a staircase are supposed to be properly spaced, structured and attached to prevent a toddler (or anyone else) from falling under the railing. Typical spacing is 4" on centers, too narrow to fit even a small head between, but check your local code. Obviously children could insert a limb and get hurt, but collapse is ...


4

You cut strips of thin plexiglass and install them where the risers would be. Since they would be transparent, they would not have to fill the entire void of the open space, they would just need to be large enough so any opening are smaller than than a hole a kid could get though (i think code is like 4".) You could use small screws that would simply hold ...


4

With concrete, the concern is moisture. Any furring strips should be pressure treated, and I've also seen good suggestions to use the foam barrier that you would typically use under a sill plate as an extra defense, e.g. this stuff (click the photo for the product page): For pressure treated, make sure any nails are galvanized to avoid the chemical ...


4

I don't think there's a good answer to this because plumbing needs a full stack, from the drain in the ground, to the vent in the roof. When you move utilities from one location to another, if you haven't changed the room above, you're stuck with lines on both new and old locations in the floors you've renovated until you're done with the renovation. And if ...


4

Here are some options: Keep a broom nearby and sweep away excess water. While this does not actualy fix anything, it will eliminate the excess water. Create a drain. Drill a hole at the lowest spot of each step for the water to escape to. This solution is not optimal and may only alleviate the problem. One will need a masonry bit and hammer drill to ...


4

You'll have to cut the carpet to attach the railing properly. Go grab the latest newstand issue of Fine Homebuilding. They have a full article on it: (Not affiliated with the magazine in any-way other than I am a fan and find it to be the best construction magazine out there) Also, heads up that this will likely be caught on an inspection and/or ...


4

After consultation with my master-carpenter-looking-over-my-shoulder, Dan, the following solution was arrived at: 1.The newel post - built up from 1x3 clear oak boards glued together. Two are full length, one is beveled (before gluing) to sit on top of angled knee wall. Attached by two lag bolts at base and one lag bolt into handrail. 2.Base - shoerail ...



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