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The Most Common Staircase Problems


With regular, daily usage, staircases develop several problems that if left unattended can create structural and safety hazzards. From loose handrails and worn treads, to creaky steps and poor lighting, A & T Carpentry share some of the most common staircase problems and show us how to repair them. 

1. Uneven Staircase treads

Uneven stairs are an issue that can create a tripping hazard. This problem often occurs due to heavy daily usage or improper installation. The best solution to this is to replace the worn-out treads or re-fit and adjust the existing treads. If the stairs were installed incorrectly, you may need to employ a professional to correct the problem.

2. Creaking Stairs

Creaking staircases are a common problem that occurs when the stair treads or risers become loose or damaged. The noise can be frustrating especially when your off to bed and trying not to wake the rest of the family. Over time it can become more severe, making it difficult to ignore. The solutionmay be to to tighten the screws that attach the treads and risers to the stringer or even replace them. You could also apply an adhesive between the treads and risers to seal them and give more stability.

Staircase painting renovation
Pine Staircase treads

3. Worn Out, Dirty or Stained Stair Treads

Over time, stair treads will become stained if not cleaned regularly, worn out, or damaged due to dailly use. To remove years of ingrained dirt and grime you can sand the surface of the treads to reveal a fresh layer of wood and then apply a high quality wax. You may also like to or add a carpet or stair runner. However, if the treads are severely damaged, you may need to replace them altogether to maintain structural integrity.

Osmo internal door oil

4. Loose Handrail

A loose handrail can be a safety hazard on a staircase, especially for children and the elderly. This problem often occurs when the handrail brackets become loose or damaged. The solution, is to tighten the screws holding the brackets in place. You may even need to fill the existing holes an re-drill them. If the handrail brackets are damaged you should replace the brackets altogether. You may also add additional brackets to give the handrail more stability.


Mop Stick Handrail Installation
Stair tread LED lights

4. Poor Staircase Lighting

Proper lighting is essential for safe stair use, especially at night or in poorly lit hallways. If your stairs do not have enough lighting, you can add additional light fixtures along the staircase wall or install LED stair lighting to illuminate the treads.


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