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Old 09-06-2012, 04:21 PM   #1
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Help with Deck Stairs


Attached a picture. So I don't really know the relevant terms, so I will try and explain them as I go!

The deck comes out 8 feet from the house, attached with a ledger board. The deck runs parallel 12 feet with the house. My wife wants the stairs in the middle of the side of the deck. This created a few issues:

I couldn't attach to any of the deck footing posts, since they are all at the outside of the deck.
The deck is about 42 inches off the ground, so I would need about 5 steps. I would need to do 6 steps to attach to the "frame 2x8" of the deck. I have seen some decks where they put another 2x8 under the one that is the frame, then run the stairs from that. That is what I tried to do. I cut some 15 inch 2x8's, and attached them vertically to the backside of the 2x8 frame joist. then I attached another 2x8 to the 7.5 inches sticking down. I didn't do the whole length, I did it more as a "proof of concept".

My questions:

Surely what I have done is not code compliant! How do I bring it up to code compliant?
Do I need posts to support the stairs?

This setup works great for the wife and I, but we are kind of skinny, lol! Scared about what would happen if a large person were to get on those stairs.

Thanks for any help.
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Old 09-06-2012, 04:32 PM   #2
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Help with Deck Stairs


There aren't too many ways you can attach stairs. Either with hangers like you did or add another step and attach to the joist, but then your step protrudes from the deck. Ask your inspector which way he likes, (they love being consulted), he may just have a few suggestions. You may get a lot of disagreements here as advice but he is the one you must please, code or not.

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Old 09-06-2012, 04:38 PM   #3
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Help with Deck Stairs


I don't know what the code in your area requires so I won't comment on that. But I do agree with you that attaching the stringers to vertical 2X8s isn't the way to go.

Here is an image from decks.com which gives a suggestion on how to attach stringers on the side of your deck. I would add blocking between the joists to transfer some of the lateral load over more than one joist. I drew one in but it doesn't show up very well.

But I am sure some experts will make some suggestions here shortly.
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Old 09-06-2012, 04:46 PM   #4
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Help with Deck Stairs


doug,

the following is the Prescriptive Residential Wood Deck Construction Guide by the American Wood Council, and is based upon the 2009 International Residential Code. http://www.awc.org/publications/DCA/DCA6/DCA6-09.pdf it will provide you with answers to most of your questions.

This link will provide you with information in regards to the New Hampshire Building Code. http://www.nh.gov/safety/boardsandcommissions/bldgcode/ NH code is based upon the 2009 IRC

Is the photo of how the deck is currently? Once you review the deck construction guide I believe you'll see what is not in compliance. Not to pick on you but off the bat I noticed the following that should be corrected:

1. attachment of stringers to deck
2. lack of guard rails for decks over 30" above adjacent grade
3. lack of handrails for stairs
4. open riser between treads greater than 4"
5. stringers landing on ground
6. lack of lateral bracing

cannot see the beam over the posts, look almost like a single ply 2x8, what are you using to support the floor joists?
cannot see your ledger board connection to the house.

I'm sure others will jump in, hopefully not jump on .....

Read through the Construction Guide and then take a close look at your deck. Post back any questions you may have.

Good luck!
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Old 09-06-2012, 06:56 PM   #5
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Help with Deck Stairs


Thanks everyone, I should add that this is a work in progress!

So I know I need to poor a pad for the risers to sit on, and I will get to the handrails at some point, lol!

I just couldn't think of a way to attach another 2x8 under the existing 2x8, so I kind of made it up! (using pieces of vertical 2x8 attached to the decks main side 2x8, protruding down enough that I could attach the second 2x8 to the vertical pieces).

I will def check in with my building inspector, and thanks for the links GBrackins! I did check decks.com for some of my questions, but didn't find that image. That's an interesting way to it, and like you, I would add some blocking so one joist isn't handling it all.

Would anyone do posts to support the stairs?
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Old 09-06-2012, 07:10 PM   #6
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Help with Deck Stairs


glad I could provide you with information
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Old 09-06-2012, 07:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougp23 View Post
Thanks everyone,

Would anyone do posts to support the stairs?
You will need posts at the corner for the rail to turn down the stairs, so you could make them full length and put them on supports.
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Old 09-06-2012, 09:59 PM   #8
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doug,

checkout this site, has some good info http://www.bestdecksite.com/introStairsPg1.htm
posted on the free pages
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:45 AM   #9
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Help with Deck Stairs


Why not install a post behind each outside stringer behind the band, then you could run a header between the posts and have plenty of support.

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