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 DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum Solving starter step problem
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09-14-2011, 10:09 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?

09-14-2011, 10:57 AM   #2
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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 ¾" & 8 ¼" (some states regulate a minimum of 6") riser.
Might try:
http://www.ez-stairs.com/stair_calculator/

 09-14-2011, 11:51 AM #3 Member   Join Date: Dec 2006 Posts: 17,158 Rewards Points: 6,652 It would be cheaper to just replace the stairs with the proper Rise & Run.

09-14-2011, 12:04 PM   #4
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## Time to fix it..

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?

09-14-2011, 12:09 PM   #5
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## Solution needed

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)?

 09-14-2011, 12:58 PM #6 Ole Wood Worker     Join Date: Sep 2008 Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee Posts: 10,299 Rewards Points: 186 Blog Entries: 1 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. __________________ New members: Please consider adding your location to your profile. If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got. http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/forum.php Jim Last edited by BigJim; 09-14-2011 at 01:01 PM.
 The Following User Says Thank You to BigJim For This Useful Post: gregzoll (09-14-2011)
 09-14-2011, 01:36 PM #7 Framing Contractor   Join Date: Feb 2009 Location: NE Ohio Posts: 1,207 Rewards Points: 112 That starter step would need to be a landing to pass. Even then, I think it needs to be 36" depth and width.
09-14-2011, 07:03 PM   #8
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## Great solution...

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.

 09-14-2011, 08:22 PM #9 Stairguy     Join Date: Apr 2010 Location: New Bedford, MA Posts: 737 Rewards Points: 508 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.
09-15-2011, 01:16 AM   #10
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Please only post the same question in one forum, thank you.
I merged both.

Gary

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