Installing Safety Stair Treads Installing Safety Stair Treads

What You'll Need
Safety stair treads
Tape measure
Linoleum knife
Epoxy nose caulk

Safety stair treads are a very good idea for hardwood interior stairs. They reduce or eliminate the possibility of slipping on the stairs which can lead to injury. It’s not difficult to install safety stair treads, although it’s important to do it properly to ensure they don’t become loose and dangerous.

Step 1 - Preparation

Before installing the safety stair treads it’s important to prepare the stairs. Sweep and vacuum them thoroughly, and then wash the steps to take off any oil or grease. Leave to dry thoroughly and then inspect the stairs. Uneven surfaces need to be repaired and each tread should be tested for squeaks. If there are any depressions or holes, use filler on them. Allow to dry and sand smooth. This is true for the nose of the stairs, too. Clean off any dust.

Step 2 - Stair Tread

Every safety stair tread is sized larger than the stair itself. The ends aren’t trimmed. This allow for variation in the shape of the steps, if they curve around a corner, for example. This means that you’ll need to cut each tread to the size of the stair. It’s important to remember that although every stair will be about the same size, there will be variations from step to step, especially in older houses.

Step 3 - Measuring and Cutting

Measure each step individually and mark out the size on the underside of the safety stair treads in market. Use the linoleum knife and a metal edge to cut each tread. Cut every tread before gluing into place. Leave the tread on the stair so you don’t become confused about which tread goes on which step. To check the size, push the nose up hard against the front edge of the stair and be certain that the tread extends all the way to the riser at the back of the stair. It should cover the stair completely from side to side.

Step 4 - Nose

The first part of installing each of the safety stair treads in fixing the nose in place. For this, use epoxy nose caulk under the overhand of each stair tread. Run a bead along the tread where it will come in contact with the stair and then push the tread firmly into place. It’s vital to make sure there is no air in the contact in order to maintain a firm, lasting bond.

Step 5 - Adhesive

With rubber safety stair treads, use a rubber adhesive. If the treads are vinyl, use contact cement. Spread the appropriate adhesive under the tread, both in the middle and around the edges. Push the tread down and push back on it to put it firmly in place. Take a roller and roll from the front of the stair to the back to take out any air pockets and have the safety stair treads sitting smoothly and evenly. Proceed one tread at a time, going down the stairs.

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