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I need a removable railing on my bottom basement steps. There is currently no railing but in order to move furniture or anything large downstairs I'm gonna need a removable railing.

It doesn't need to be pretty but I'm fairly certain I need one on the non-foundation wall side.

1) per the UDC, can I have a railing on the foundation wall and avoid having one where the drop off is (see picture)

2) if I need to have one opposite the foundation wall is there a "kit" that I can install vs building one?

steps without railing

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To your question #1 according the the IRC, NO you have to have a railing on the open side of the stairway.

SECTION R312 GUARDS

R312.1 Where required. Guards shall be located along open-sided walking surfaces, including stairs, ramps and landings, that are located more than 30 inches (762 mm) measured vertically to the floor or grade below at any point within 36 inches (914 mm) horizontally to the edge of the open side. Insect screening shall not be considered as a guard.

R312.2 Height. Required guards at open-sided walking surfaces, including stairs, porches, balconies or landings, shall be not less than 36 inches (914 mm) high measured vertically above the adjacent walking surface, adjacent fixed seating or the line connecting the leading edges of the treads. Exceptions:

  1. Guards on the open sides of stairs shall have a height not less than 34 inches (864 mm) measured vertically froma line connecting the leading edges of the treads.

  2. Where the top of the guard also serves as a handrail on the open sides of stairs, the top of the guard shall not be not less than 34 inches (864mm) and notmore than 38 inches (965 mm) measured vertically from a line connecting the leading edges of the treads.

To your question #2:

There are plenty of handrail kits for sale online and in the big-box stores. Just google "stair rail kit" and you will find many to choose from.

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The first idea that comes to mind when you said removable would be this type of bracket enter link description here . These are used primarily on flat bed trucks to secure the gates that keep cargo from bouncing off. With the brackets you will also need 2x lumber for the vertical posts. I believe the rails have to be a particular profile to conform to the IRC (here in N.A anyway).

  • what do you mean by particular profile? – tjcinnamon Dec 16 '15 at 21:09
  • The shape of the hand rail is limited by the IRC. There are limits to the design of hand rails. They must be grip able and ergonomic in form. – ojait Dec 17 '15 at 3:05

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