I just purchased a home (well back in Feb) and this is the first year of having a pool, and I am attempting to remove the side stairs so I can cover the pool for winter.

My stairs look exactly like the ones in this video, and I removed the bolts just like in the video. Problem I have is that the stairs are NOT budging when I push, pull, twist or anything.

Is there any other tricks/tips to removing the stairs? I was thinking today, I could tap with a hammer to see if it would "loosen" the rail from the ground, but that is about the only thought I have on how to do such.


1 Answer 1


There's a metal tube set in the deck that the stairs drop into, the bolts push a metal wedge against the stairs to keep them in place. Your problem is most likely bits of sand/dirt/stone dust have gotten in there and are acting as a bunch of tiny wedges. Hours of sunlight can cause the stairs to expand slightly aggravating the situation.

A good first step is running a hose or dumping a couple of buckets of water from the pool over the connectors. The water will solve any heat problems while hopefully flushing enough junk out of the hole to free the stairs.

If that doesn't work then tapping on the stairs to dislodge or crush the trapped grits should. You don't want to use a hammer though, because it risks marring the finish. Use a rubber mallet if you have one, or a block of wood between the hammer and stairs.

A short length of 2x4 works well if you have one. You're a lot less likely to mar the finish tapping on the stairs with that than a hammer. As an added bonus if the tapping doesn't work you can slip it beneath the curves at the top and jerk straight up.

FYI the bolts are threaded into pawls which compress against the stairs when you tighten the bolts. After removing the stairs you'll want to thread the bolts back into the metal piece which is loose in the hole so you can put the stairs back in the spring.

  • Please forgive my ignorance here, but the socket would be where the stairs go into the ground? Commented Nov 1, 2017 at 12:52
  • Correct. I edited things to hopefully be a bit clearer. Commented Nov 1, 2017 at 15:14

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