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Old 09-14-2011, 09:09 AM   #1
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Solving starter step problem


I have an outdoor raised patio that is three steps up from a concrete slab. The first step is a 9.5 inch rise off the concrete slab, then the second and third steps are 6 inch rise with 11.5 inch treads (poor planning). I want to pour a 3.5 starter step on the slab to act as a new first step. This would give me a consistent 6 inch rise for each step (and eliminate the 9.5 inch first step). What would be a good tread depth for this starter step? I'm considering it at 18 inch (or more) to make a transition to the rest of the steps from the rest of the slab. Making it just 11.5 deep like the others would seem to create more of a stumbling opportunity because of the immediate difference in rise. Any suggestions or rules for how to best solve this problem of transversing this 9.5 inch rise overall?
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Old 09-14-2011, 09:57 AM   #2
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Solving starter step problem


Nate,
WHat is distance from patio down to concrete slab?
Steps should have a consistent rise and run and not vary to prevent tripping, stumbling, etc...
Usually step is 9-10" with a 7 " & 8 " (some states regulate a minimum of 6") riser.
Might try:
http://www.ez-stairs.com/stair_calculator/
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:51 AM   #3
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Solving starter step problem


It would be cheaper to just replace the stairs with the proper Rise & Run.
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Old 09-14-2011, 11:04 AM   #4
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Solving starter step problem


Thanks for the link, Bob. The total height from the slab to the top of the patio slab is 21.5 inches (2 steps at 6 inches, one step at 9.5 inches). At this point, I'm locked into that step arrangement as they are poured concrete. I need to solve the transition from the slab to first step with a starter step. Just wondering what kind of span for the 3.5 inch high starter step would make the most sense... 18 inches, 24 inches? Any rules of thumb for the span to transverse before changing the rise in stairs?
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Old 09-14-2011, 11:09 AM   #5
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Solving starter step problem


Everything is poured concrete, so changing it is not less expensive. Just need to know what kind of span for the 3.5 inch high starter step would make the most sense... 18 inches, 24 inches? Any rules of thumb for the span to transverse before changing the rise in stairs (for safety)?
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Old 09-14-2011, 11:58 AM   #6
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Solving starter step problem


No matter how wide you make the "starter" step, it will always be a stumbler. This will hurt the resale of your house and is evidence for your insurance to cancel in case of an accident. Not to mention it will not pass code.
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Old 09-14-2011, 12:36 PM   #7
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Solving starter step problem


That starter step would need to be a landing to pass. Even then, I think it needs to be 36" depth and width.
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Old 09-14-2011, 06:03 PM   #8
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Solving starter step problem


SixEightTen:

Thanks for the suggestion to expand it into a landing. That's do-able. It makes sense, and actually solves instead of reinforces the problem. Thanks for your vision.
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Old 09-14-2011, 07:22 PM   #9
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Solving starter step problem


It seems to me that you are making a mistake to cover up a mistake. Your rise was off 3.5" on the 1st rise so you are planing to add a 3.5" concrete landing in front of it. So now you will have 4 rises at 3.5,6,6,6. Its still off 3.5". The amount of concrete you are going to use on the new landing you might as well just rebuild the stairs.
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Old 09-15-2011, 12:16 AM   #10
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Solving starter step problem


Please only post the same question in one forum, thank you.
I merged both.

Gary
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