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Old 12-22-2007, 10:18 AM   #1
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paint or carpet stringers

We recently replaced an old poorly constructed upstairs railing with a beautiful oak railing. It doesnt match the downstairs railing and newel now so my plan is to paint the downstairs railing and spindles and newel to match the painted wall right next to it to sort of make it "disappear".It's a dark ugly wood tone anyway and I think it will look better painted .The problem is the stringers in the staircase are stained and finished in this same ugly dark brown color. I am about to recarpet the stairs and the upstairs hallway and also paint and wallpaper the staircase walls and upstairs hallway. I chose Navajo white for the walls. Here is my predicament. I'd like to paint the stringers navajo white but I am concerned that over time, vacuuming the stairs and day to day usage the paint will wear and chip and I will constantly be touching up the paint where it chipped off.Remember it's a dark brown color I'm trying to cover with navajo white. My other option is to have the stringers carpeted along with the treads and that way I won't ever have to worry about paint chipping, just will have more carpet to vacuum.
I'm thinking of putting a berber on the stairs but I don't know how difficult it would be to install that kind of carpet on the stringers.Also, I think the quarter round molding that is on the woodwork now would have to be removed to have the carpet installed properly.Would the carpet installer do that or would I have to get it off myself? Thanks for your time.


Last edited by sandyg; 12-22-2007 at 10:31 AM. Reason: couldnt add photo
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Old 12-22-2007, 09:18 PM   #2
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How about just doing a carpet runner up the center of the stairs. You could then paint the exposed part of the risers, and have the stairway maintain more of it classic look than wrapping everything with carpet.


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Old 12-23-2007, 12:13 AM   #3
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thanks for your input troubleseeker

If the stairs were in good condition I would have considered a runner, but they have been covered in carpet since before we bought the house 27 years ago. I pulled back some carpet to see the finish on the steps and they'd need a total refinish job. Aside from that, when the homeowners before us added the upstairs addition they didnt lay hardwood so the upstairs flooring is carpet over plywood. We didn't want the extra expense of putting in a new floor upstairs, or a new staircase and we like having the carpet upstairs to muffle the footsteps of the people walking around up there. So we will be replacing the 27 year old carpet with new carpet on the stairs and in the hallway.
So not carpeting the stairs is not an option at this time.

It comes down to painting or carpeting the stringers,I'm leaning toward the carpet and would love some more suggestions.
have a great day,

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