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Old 11-19-2011, 04:05 AM   #1
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


At the bottom of my basement stairs I will be constructing a doorway on the wall to the left,with a (preferably) outswing door,as I wish to maximize useful space in the storage area the wall will enclose.
My question is how much clearance from the last riser to the door must I allow for?
Any input, or direction to the code section I should reference would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 11-19-2011, 10:11 AM   #2
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


I would leave at least three to four feet, so that it is treated as a landing space. As for the door, it should swing towards the stairs, not towards the space, since it is considered one of the egress routes, and that you do not want the door opening if someone falls into it at the bottom. Also if finishing the basement, you need another egress route besides the stairs.

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Old 11-19-2011, 12:42 PM   #3
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


im with greg on this. if memory serves correct you technically dont need any space for door thats at the bottom of a stair however at hte top their must be a landing where the space must be as long as the stairwell is wide. meaning 34" wide stairwell, you need a 34x34 landing before the door.
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Old 11-19-2011, 03:10 PM   #4
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


Actually woodworkbykirk, the landing at the top, would be between the door and the upper wall, not between the door and stairs at the top, if you are placing it on the main floor, or upper floor. Down at the bottom, it needs to be enough space, that you can stand on the floor, not the tread while opening the door.
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Old 11-19-2011, 03:34 PM   #5
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


If you're installing a 36" door, the area will need to be about 42" to accommodate the frame comfortably. You can go less for narrower doors, but if your stairs are a minimum of 36" wide (I assume) why would you go with a narrower door?
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Old 11-19-2011, 04:10 PM   #6
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R311.7.5 Landings for stairways. There shall be a floor or landing at the top and bottom of each stairway. A flight of stairs shall not have a vertical rise larger than 12 feet (3658 mm) between floor levels or landings. The width of each landing shall not be less than the width of the stairway served. Every landing shall have a minimum dimension of 36 inches (914 mm) measured in the direction of travel.

Exception: A floor or landing is not required at the top of an interior flight of stairs, including stairs in an enclosed garage, provided a door does not swing over the stairs.
From: http://publicecodes.citation.com/ico...011_par014.htm

Be sure to return your handrail to the wall or post over the last riser: http://publicecodes.citation.com/ico...011_par018.htm

Never heard of any residential code on door swing….. most all front doors swing in, is that a local code?


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Old 11-19-2011, 04:14 PM   #7
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


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Originally Posted by spring3100 View Post
At the bottom of my basement stairs I will be constructing a doorway on the wall to the left,with a (preferably) outswing door,as I wish to maximize useful space in the storage area the wall will enclose.
My question is how much clearance from the last riser to the door must I allow for?
Any input, or direction to the code section I should reference would be greatly appreciated.
I think it's 10". And if you swing the door out, don't swing it towards the stairs swing it away from the stairs.
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Old 11-19-2011, 04:20 PM   #8
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


Is this what you'rte talking about?
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Old 11-19-2011, 05:58 PM   #9
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


the last few years weve been installing outswing entry doors believe it or not. im right on the coast and ever since hurricane juan hit us in 2003 the tropical storms have become more frequant. reason being when heavy winds start blowing a inswing door it can push the door open just enough for water to get in.. reverse the swing of the door and the heavier the wind the harder the door gets pushed against the weatherstripping thus a tighter seal. accepted by inspectors as long as the corrrect amount of space is kept between it and deck stairs
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:55 AM   #10
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


You wouldn't want someone to open the door halfway as someone else is coming down the stairs. Walking into the edge of a door usually causes sever head trauma. Swing it into the store. Safety is more important than some storage space, or use a sliding door. Even leaving the door adjar by accident is a serious accident waiting to happen, especially in the dim light of a basement.
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Old 11-20-2011, 06:07 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Joe Carola View Post
Is this what you'rte talking about?
Exactly Joe,Thank You !!!I will endeavour to get at least 12 inches of landing space for safety sake.

Last edited by spring3100; 11-20-2011 at 06:18 AM.
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Old 11-20-2011, 06:16 AM   #12
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


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Originally Posted by woodworkbykirk View Post
the last few years weve been installing outswing entry doors believe it or not. im right on the coast and ever since hurricane juan hit us in 2003 the tropical storms have become more frequant. reason being when heavy winds start blowing a inswing door it can push the door open just enough for water to get in.. reverse the swing of the door and the heavier the wind the harder the door gets pushed against the weatherstripping thus a tighter seal. accepted by inspectors as long as the corrrect amount of space is kept between it and deck stairs
Kirk,This is an entire interior application,but what you say makes good sense.
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Old 11-20-2011, 06:22 AM   #13
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


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Originally Posted by GBR in WA View Post
R311.7.5 Landings for stairways. There shall be a floor or landing at the top and bottom of each stairway. A flight of stairs shall not have a vertical rise larger than 12 feet (3658 mm) between floor levels or landings. The width of each landing shall not be less than the width of the stairway served. Every landing shall have a minimum dimension of 36 inches (914 mm) measured in the direction of travel.

Exception: A floor or landing is not required at the top of an interior flight of stairs, including stairs in an enclosed garage, provided a door does not swing over the stairs.
From: http://publicecodes.citation.com/ico...011_par014.htm

Be sure to return your handrail to the wall or post over the last riser: http://publicecodes.citation.com/ico...011_par018.htm

Never heard of any residential code on door swing….. most all front doors swing in, is that a local code?


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Thanks GBR,these will be stairs at the bottom of an interior basement stairway,Joes diagram hits it on the head.
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Old 11-20-2011, 08:46 AM   #14
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


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Originally Posted by spring3100 View Post
Exactly Joe,Thank You !!!I will endeavour to get at least 12 inches of landing space for safety sake.
Have you thought about using a double door and swinging them in? This way only half the door would swing in.
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Last edited by Joe Carola; 11-20-2011 at 10:26 AM.
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Old 11-20-2011, 10:45 AM   #15
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Bottom of Stair Doorway


just saying. but yah definitely make sure there is more than enough room for someone to use the stair and not get fetched up on the door

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