Should You Repair or Replace Your Staircase?

List: Posted: 04/04/11

Replacing a staircase can be a major undertaking, and if you decide to take the plunge and replace it yourself, expect to have major work ahead of you. Some of the changes you make could also affect the structure of the house, so bear that in mind before you begin.

 

Most often, you’ll need a professional carpenter to fully replace your staircase. Most people wouldn’t even know where to start. Where repair is concerned, however, the tasks are often very easy. A stairway is a structure that is built to last and that means it can be patched and repaired many times over before you need to call in professional help.

Your staircase is mostly made up of flat boards. The only exceptions to this are if you have a metal staircase or a spiral staircase. In spiral designs, the inside of the stair is sometimes narrower than the outside, although anyone with a tape measure and a circular saw should be able to replicate this type of cut.

 

If you have carpet on your staircase, you’ll obviously need to remove this before you do any repairs to the stairs themselves. To fix a broken stair, all you need to do in most cases is to first remove the carpet, then pry off the old stair, nail in the new one and reapply whatever covering is used on the staircase.

For a metal or concrete staircase, the repair jobs can be very complex. It’s usually best to hire someone with real skills to perform these jobs.

Replacing any staircase completely can get very expensive. Aside from materials, it’s a time-consuming job and should only be done when repair is not a safe option, such as when a narrow staircase is in heavy daily use.

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