Concrete stairs are a very practical and convenient solution. You can walk on them with heavy materials without worrying about damaging them. To give them a unique and elegant character, it’s worth putting wooden steps on them.
Concrete stairs – not all the same
Concrete stairs are a very practical solution, unfortunately it is not aesthetic. That’s why more and more people decide to have wooden treads and stringers.
Types of concrete stairs
- ladder stairs – are built of two stringers and attached to them treads;
- cheeky stairs – are built with two cheek beams, treads and risers;
- carpet stairs.
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Steps matched to the rest of the floor
The material for stairs and floors should be selected already at the stage of designing the house. Thanks to that after finishing the floors stairs will be the same height. Before the stairs are finished, the first and the last step must have a different height than the rest. The height of the first step will be increased by the thickness of the material layers on the floor of the first floor. The last step should be lower by the height of the floor on the first floor.
If the decision on the choice of materials for the floors is left for later, most often the treads should be forged and overlaid.
Materials for finishing stairs
Leaving and climbing the stairs, the foot is most often put in the same place – then a trace in the form of a trampled step can remain. That is why it is recommended that the material for the tread is resistant to damage.
Risers and treads are usually made of hardwoods:
- beech – this wood is a classic solution that suits most home furnishings. The advantage of beech wood is resistance to moisture;
- oak – oak stairs are a classic and elegant solution that will suit any location. Oak treads have high resistance to abrasion. The only drawback of this solution is high price;
- ash – this wood is difficult to process but thanks to its durability, it is a very popular solution. Steps made of this wood are suitable for places which are often and intensively used;
- pine – it is a soft wood, which is suitable for treads. The advantage of this wood is resistance to damage and abrasion. Unfortunately, it cannot be used in places with high humidity, because it deforms;
- maple – it is a hard wood, which will prove useful in places of intensive use. It is resistant to increased humidity;
- walnut – is a dark wood that will prove useful as a heavily used tread. Stairs made of walnut require regular varnishing;
- cherry – it is cheap and easily accessible wood. To make stairs durable, it is worth choosing the oldest possible wood (preferably 15 years old).
What is the best material for stairs?
The choice of wood for stair treads depends on individual needs and financial possibilities. The hardest domestic species of wood are oak and maple, but they are one of the more expensive materials. If the stairs will be used in an average way, it’s worth deciding on steps made of beech or ash, which are much cheaper.
Dimensions of wooden treads
Wooden treads are from 3 to 3.5 cm thick. The treads are thinner, from 1.5 to 2 cm thick. In modern arrangements, the sub-footers and the treads have the same thickness.
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Wood absorbs moisture, so you should choose only seasoned species for stairs. Wooden treads are attached to concrete steps with dowels that are plugged from the top. Special dowels for stairs can also be used – they do not need to be blinded.
Risers and treads are connected by the tongue-and-groove method or inserted into milled grooves in the tread.
Wooden stairs finishing
Wooden stairs are usually finished with hard varnish which is selected according to the species of wood. Oiling will only work for domestic species of wood. It is not recommended to oil, pine, fir and spruce, because only varnish will increase the durability in use of this wood.