painting stair treads and risers

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Old 01-14-05, 03:02 AM
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Exclamation painting stair treads and risers

We have a townhome built in 2002 with just normal stairs and yucky carpeting......... I have seen some stairs that have been painted. We don't really care if the stairs look like hardwood (if we stain them) or if they're just painted.......we just want the carpet to GO! Can't afford to put nice hardwood there.
My questions are: What kind of wood is under that carpet, more than likely!? Can I sand, fill holes and gaps, sand some more, caulk and then paint brown on the treads and white on the risers (I KNOW this will take a TON of time)? Is is possible to stain the treads or is the wood yucky?
IF I can paint, what kind of paint and sealant over the paint should I use?
THANKS so much for any and all help!!
 
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Old 01-14-05, 05:21 AM
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hi
Well you are in for some work i see lol lol
Ok let strart first:
Q:My questions are: What kind of wood is under that carpet,
A: Usualy the tread is made from spruce lumber and the riser made out of particule board.

Q: Can I sand, fill holes and gaps, sand some more, caulk and then paint brown on the treads and white on the risers (I KNOW this will take a TON of time)? Is is possible to stain the treads or is the wood yucky?
A: you can sand fill the hole and gap with wood filler. Thes some latex wood filler that are colored to match stain.

Q:IF I can paint, what kind of paint and sealant over the paint should I use?
A: If you going to stain the stairs used a oil base stain and polyhuratane for floor.
If you going to paint them instead used a floor acrylic paint.

Hope this helps you

cheers

pgtek
 
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Old 01-14-05, 06:02 AM
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Probably pine

Since the carpet is intended to take the wear of foot traffic, the wood underneath is likely a softwood such as pine. Since it is not currently visible, there may be gaps between the riser and the tread that will come into view.

Consider replacing the tread carpet with some type of vinyl, perhaps on a per-tread basis. If the riser is ugly, maybe a thin piece of paneling to cover the gaps.
 
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Old 01-14-05, 06:10 AM
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Since your home is almost new, it's a safe bet that the stairs were built to be carpeted and that means that they weren't made to be pretty. Treads could be almost anything - including plywood, and risers may be particle board or more plywood. "Fit and finish" probably aren't that great since they weren't intended to be visible - just structurally sound.

You need to lift some carpeting and padding to see what you have under it. You might also get a pro to give you estimates to:
(1) patch, caulk, and paint or
(2) replace the treads & risers with paint grade materials and paint.

It may turn out that replacement is a better financial decision.
 
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Old 01-15-05, 04:38 AM
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Should I be worried about the edge of the tread splintering or chipping with all the wear?
 
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Old 01-15-05, 06:37 AM
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In a word..........yes. If the treads are plywood, it's almost a certainty. Plywood is made of veneers (layers) glued together in a sandwich and exposed edges are very prone to splintering. Rounding the edges can reduce (but won't eliminate) the problem.

Wear is a function of the hardness of the wood. Pine is very soft and would wear quickly. Harder woods such as maple, oak, or birch would last much longer - but are way more expensive.

Ain't this fun?
 
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