Situation:We are replacing carpeted stairs with Hardwood. The stairs were prefabed with the treads dadoed in. Background:We have a staircase with a landing then another run of stairs to the main floor. Ground floor has tile then transition to stairs. The landing is currently carpeted. Then Final run to main floor which is hardwood. Each tread rise is 7 inches.Question:How do I add hardwood without messing up the rise? Full treads: Putting full 1" oak treads will cause the 1st step to be 8 inches and the remaining treads to be 7 inches until the landing. The landing will be converted to hardwood adding 3/4 inch. This will cause the first step to be 6 1/4 inch and the remaining steps to to be 7 inches with the exception of the last one which will be 6 inches.Tread covers:If we do the retreads. It will add to the first step and still cause the last step prior to the main floor to be short. Are we missing something or is this is how it is supposed to be?
We have cut the bullnose off and don't know whether to go with retreads or full planks. Also how to hide the previous dado holes?
Hello, my name is XXXX XXX thanks for coming to JustAnswer. You have correctly identified the issue. You arent missing anything, but you only have a few real options. None of which is probably going to be to your liking. The first option is to tear off the current treads if possible and recut the stringers in place. Basically adjusting each cut to average out the rise. The other option is to shim or add to the top of each stringer again, each one gets shimmed slightly more than the last so in the end they are all the same.
Actually what I meant with my second option is to shim the top of the existing treads before installing the new treads on top. The challenge with this option is that you will see the shims from the sides or under them if they are exposed. You mentioned hiding the dados. Are the risers open so that you can see through them?
No the risers and treads are solid pine. The stairs are boxed in with the treads dadoed in the stringer/sideboard.
So are you hoping to convert both runs above and below the landing?
So there is a run of 7 steps
a landing (that we want to Hardwood as well) and then another run
So can't you remove the existing treads and install the new oak ones in the same dados so it works as before?
the last run ends on our mainfloor (we have a townhouse) and that floor already has hardwoods
I don't know how you would do that
They were likely slid in from the front or the back, and probably glued, possibly nailed with smaller finish nails at an angle to catch part of the side stringers
If you cut down the middle of each existing tread twice and remove the center cut piece you now have the ability to rock the end piece up and down to break the glue if you're lucky and loosen the nails.
If you're not that lucky it may require breaking them apart and chiseling out the old glue after pulling the nails if they indeed did nail them.
Since it is a townhouse we have no access to the backside of the stairs. I'm pretty sure my neighbors who had some hardwood put in just did the "Retreads" but I don't know that should still lead to a few steps at different heights. Will that still be in code
No it would not be in code, it is done all the time however. Code reads that the largest to the smallest rise cannot exceed 3/8"
so can you explain what you mean by shim the existing treads?
all of the online DIY stuff says to cut bullnose off and then lay the new treads on top. Then of course you have the issue we I brought up. I don't think I saw anything on the shims...but it could be something I might be able to do
yeah, take the total number of steps and divide that into the thickness of the new tread. This wont work in your case though, because the bottom step is already too big, you actually need to do the opposite, by reducing the bottom step by the total and gradually less until you get to the top.
Your only real answer to keep constistent steps is to cut out the old treads, cut a slot in the front where the dado is and slide in the new treads.
Sorry to confuse you, but the shim option is when you add flooring to one level and then want to fix the steps, the first step is too small so you add to each step.
ahh i see
what if we just pull the first step and put a real tread there then use these http://www.lowes.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10151&catalogId=10051&cId=SEARCH&prod uctId=3316912&cm_mmc=SCE_gps-_-gps-_-gps-_-Stairtek%2036%22L%20x%2011-1/2%22W%20Unfinished%20Red%20Oak%20Interior%20Stair%20RetroTread&CAWELAID=1024116195
Bummer, it says "we are having a problem with our application. the site is currently down...
same type of concept
I typed in retrotread on lowes site and see prefinished retro treads. The one I see doesnt give me a thickness, but they are likely too thin to use alone. you would need to add plywood to the underside to make them the same thickness as your current treads. These are likely only 3/8 or 1/2" thick
I was going to lay those on top of the existing treads
they are 3/8 inch thick i believe
Yeah, the young manufacturing ones are 5/8 thick. if you tear off the carpet, you are roughly the same. Carpet does squish down but does have even a squished thickness of close to 1/2", so you should be fine.
3/8 is good if you have perfectly flat treads, if they are cupped at all these will crack in the voids, so use lots of construction adhesive in the cupped area to take up the gap between new and old
When the glue sets up it will support the new oak on top
The installation video was good to watch but it never really addressed landing and going to a floor with exisiting hardwood so I didn't know how to handle that
Do they provide riser material too? If not you will need to buy 1/2" oak and stain and seal it yourself the same color. The top and bottom will be slightly different heights, so you would need to rip the riser material the correct height. you dont have to be perfect because the cut edge would hide behind the cove on the underside.
They do have riser but we were going to go white riser with stained oak treads
any 1/4" wood would do
Thats a great look, get some white squeeze tube caulking for the edges as some will likely get cut slightly short and even 1/16" gap against white risers will show, but the caulking will hide it nicely.
Cut the hole in the squeeze tube really small or you will have caulk all over.
Yeah the wife didn't like the oak on oak ...she said it was too "woody"....anyways are the retrotreads a good way to go? if so, do we still have to rip out the first tread or can we just use a retrotread on that too
you should be fine. removing the carpet is roughly the same thickness as the new tread, so you shouldnt notice the difference.
the retrotreads will work nicely The factory finish is usually pretty durable. Harder finish than you can do yourself.
excellent...Thanks for all the help...you rock
12 yrs experience in new construction and remodeling
one last question...my 1st tread is a rounded starter step. Is there a special way to retrotread that or do we buy a new starter tread in oak
What do you mean by quarter step? Are you saying the end is rounded? Like an old Victorian staircase? If so, obviously the normal tread wouldn't work. The Lowes option does make a rounded starting step.
It kind of looks like this http://www.stairsupplies.com/eng/products/treads_risers/Startingsteps/8010_starting_stepBut it is rounded only on one side (FLush against the wall on the other) . And it is a pine tread vice oak
For this one you may need to take off the old tread. Tough to say without being there looking at measurements/clearances etc. Obviously you don't want gaps on the side or bottom that could be avoided by removing something first.
Have you done your step project? If so, how did it go?Mark