basement stairs too steep, narrow


Old 02-22-01, 01:06 PM
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My basement stairs are either too steep, too narrow (depth-wise), or both. I suspect both. How can I tell if the stairs were built at too steep an angle? IS there some stair length to ceiling height ratio? Also, is there a standard depth for each stair? Last, if the staircase angle is indeed too steep, would extending the lip on each stair help?

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Old 02-22-01, 04:34 PM
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step height

hallo i made my step 7 1/2" high & 9 1/2deeb you can get plans from your nearest home depot,i am sure they will help you. in the meantime i will look for something more positive. codie
Old 02-25-01, 09:38 PM
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The maximum height for risers is 8 1/4". The minimum for treads is 9". "the greatest riser height within any flight of stairs shall not exceed the smallest by more than 3/8". Minimum required headspace is 6'-8". When risers are closed all treads may have a uniform projection not to exceed 1 1/2". Stairways shall not be less than 3'. Handrails may project from each side of a stairway a distance of 3 1/2" into the required width.

Source: Council of American Building Officials One and Two Family Dwelling Code, 1992 Edition.
Old 03-18-01, 11:32 AM
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Preferred Stair Angle

Bill, Your assumption is correct. The proper or comfortable angle for stairs is 30 to 35 degrees. Therefore the sum of the rise plus the tread width should be 17" to 17-1/2". A 7-1/2" rise should have a tread width of 10" providing a stair angle of approx 36 degrees. Many times stairs that are install where limited run distance is available the carpenter will deviate from the preferred ratios. In your case 7 steps with a rise of 7.5 inches should have a tread width of 10 inches or a total run of 70" plus the landing areas usually 36 inches minimum at top and bottom. Please note the tread with is considered the riser face to face distance exculding any tread nosing.

Hope this helps out.

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