Q: One visitor asked, "I am having a new 2 story house built. I am installing oak hardwood flooring on the main and upper level. I want to install oak on the stair treads and paint the risers. I am told by the builder that the treads have to be glued in. I would assume removing them and replacing them with oak slabs would be a fun job. Can I simply put oak slabs over the existing tread? Keeping in mind that the height would be increased to the same height as the hardwood flooring at the top and bottom. Also, do I have to cut off the outer lip if I go with a thin stair nosing? If I do have to cut it off, how would you recommend I do it?"
I have refaced a number of stair cases with hardwood flooring, including
both treads and risers. All things considered, however, any others I do
will be with the slab treads instead. The price for materials is nearly the
same, but with the slabs, it doesn't look so "busy".
I hope your stair case has boxed in treads, with a stringer on each side, rather than having spindles on each tread. In that case, you would have to remove the spindles for sure. And if the stair case is winding, probably half the treads would have to be custom made.
So, if we are dealing with boxed stairs, you probably have plywood or construction grade pine treads presently. Yes, the outer edge of the tread should be cut back flush with the edge of the riser. So, you will take about 1 1/2" off the outside edge of each tread. You can cut along the edge of the stringer, at the end of each tread with a hand saw. Then you can measure back from the edge whatever distance it is, we will say 1 1/2".
Make a straight line from end to end. Now you have a choice of cutting off the outside edge using a handsaw (painfully slow), a circular saw, jig saw or reciprocating saw. It may help to have each. The circular saw is fast, but will only get you to within about 5 inches of the end of the tread. The rest can be finished with the jig saw or recip. Slabs come in standard sizes of 9 1/4 or 10 1/4, and pick you length:36", 42", 48".
You can apply a good quality wood/carpenters glue to the existing unfinished tread, or use a heavy mastic. Bostik's Best is an excellent urethane adhesive who's bond is described as tenacious. It is a very aggressive adhesive which I am learning to appreciate. And it never becomes brittle. Tack a few nails in to hold it and the glue will do the rest.
Related questions about wood stairs and more:
>Does Face Lift Floors sell wood?
>Finding it hard to match an existing floor?
>I removed cabinets in our kitchen and found unfinished flooring. How do I match this area to the rest of the kitchen floor?
>How do I prepare wood floors for folk art style painting?
>Should I frame my fireplace? How?
>How do I install railing posts on hardwood?
>What type of tool should be used to install tongue in groove flooring?
>Do I just router the bullnose along the 'grain end' of the stair tread?
>Pneumatic hardwood flooring Nailer or Stapler?
>Should I install veneer on treads?
>What should we do with our plywood staircase?
>Do I/how do I remove old stair treads?
>How do I remove adhesive from my risers?
>How do I install hardwood on my stairs?
>Why doesn't anyone want to sand my risers?
>My stairs are creaking a lot and i want to fix this. I have taken up the carpet but can't find any nail heads, I do not know where the joists are, and I can't access the stairs from below. What should I do?
>What is the best type of sander to use on pine treads?
>What is the best way to refinish stair treads?
>Should I use veneer on stair treads?
>What is the best thing to put on interior oak stair treads?
>What kind of paint should I use on the railing?
>Can we stain and polyurethane the stairs before installation?
>Is it a good idea to put hardwood on your stairs?
>Should I glue solid oak treads onto existing fir treads?
>I would like to place a laminate hardwood over my stairs. I do not want to have to remove the stairs and rebuild. How do I do this?
>When placing hardwood on stair treads, do they have to be 1" thick or thicker? And do you use one plank of hardwood or could you use strips of hardwood for stair treads?
>Do I have to remove my banister on my stairs to install the hardwood or can it be left in place?
>Who do I turn to for treads and railing to match my floors?