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Flt_Simulation 11-03-2010 09:50 AM

Laying tile over hardwood stairs steps
Got a question for you folks. I live in the Philippines and have hardwood stairs in the house. What I would like to do is cover just the flat part of the steps that your feet contact when walking up the stairs (tread) with ceramic tile. No tile will be placed on the closed risers.

I have a Filipino tile man that is very good at cutting tile neatly, but I am not sure if tile can by laid over wood without problems.

The tile would extend just to the inside of those steel balusters you see in the photos below, so I won't have to worry about tileing around those metal rods.

Is it possible to lay tile over a piece of 1 1/2" hardwood?

Here is a photo of the stairs in my house:


tpolk 11-03-2010 10:32 AM

if your stairs squeak at all no, need backer also

vote4Pedro 11-03-2010 10:37 AM

that looks very nice.. don't know why you'd want to tile over that

Flt_Simulation 11-03-2010 06:30 PM


Originally Posted by tpolk (Post 527913)
if your stairs squeak at all no, need backer also

The whole frame for the stairs is poured cement. The only wood in the stairs is the tread pieces and the closed risers (those wood pieces you see in the photo.

BTW ... those wood pieces were nailed to the cement with concrete nails before finishing.

The wood looks good from a distance, but up close, the wood tread pieces are not that nice looking ... that's why I want to cover them with tile. Also, after awhile, your shoes start to remove some of the finish from the wood tread pieces.

JazMan 11-03-2010 08:38 PM


I think it would be a big mistake to do what you're proposing, it would ruin the looks of the stairway. Plus tile over solid wood is never a good method. I recommend re-finishing or just re-placing the wood treads.


Evil Scotsman 11-04-2010 07:53 AM

I don't know for sure I am just proposing a question and or suggestion. Would it be possible to remove the wood completely? Then tile over the concrete?

Flt_Simulation 01-04-2011 08:05 PM

sorry ... i can't type caps. my light arm is in a sling do to a motorcycle accident i had 3 weeks ago.

anyway, i got my tile installer to cut some 16" tiles and here is the result.

the cost was materials plus 4,000 pesos ($90) labor ..... the 16" tiles cost 56 pesos ($1.27) each. We used 43 tiles.


Bud Cline 01-04-2011 08:24 PM

Beautiful job!

Now, is he going to be responsible when the tiles start coming off the treads? Are you going to expect him to repair it for no pay?

Personally I think you may have taken advantage of that guy only paying him 90 bucks. :)

If he wants to come to the U.S. have him contact me, I have a job for him and he can earn more than $90 in four hours.:yes:

Flt_Simulation 01-04-2011 08:33 PM


Originally Posted by Bud Cline (Post 563007)
Beautiful job!

Personally I think you may have taken advantage of that guy only paying him 90 bucks. :)

If he wants to come to the U.S. have him contact me, I have a job for him and he can earn more than $90 in four hours.:yes:


Actually he got 4,000 pesos for 5 days work. Thats 800 pesos ($18) for each 7 hour day he worked.

The average salary for anyone in the trades is 350 pesos per day here ... so he was happy to make more than double that amount.

Hey, that's just life here in the philippines. :)

Note: I would never expect him to repair the job with no pay ... The whole project was my idea ... not his.

BTW ... this is the same guy that installed all the tile throughout the house.


Here is some of the bathroom tile he did ... good job:

And some of the carport tile work (we don't use inclosed garages over here) ... and patio

firehawkmph 01-04-2011 09:25 PM

The tile work looks great. Are you in the service living over there? I hope the harley wasn't the one you had your accident with.
Mike Hawkins:)

Flt_Simulation 01-04-2011 09:41 PM


it was that sportster that i dumped. some young girl walked right out in front of me crossing the street. she never looked either direction. i could not change lanes do to traffic. locked up the brakes and dumped the bike just before it would have hit her. anyway, i missed her but broke my collar bone in 3 places and broke 2 ribs. i hurt like hell now.

i am done riding this bike over here. will fix it and sell it.

i am retired military


firehawkmph 01-05-2011 09:15 AM

Take it easy for awhile and heal up. The bike doesn't look too bad for going down. I had a guy turn right in front of me when I was on my buell one day. Laid the bike down, slid into him and ended up with a broken back. I healed up fine with no surgery. I sold all my street bikes and just ride off road now. Hope you feel better soon, and thank you for your service to our country.
Mike Hawkins:)

Bud Cline 01-06-2011 08:33 PM

The tileguy is an excellent craftsman. He has done some beautiful work.:)

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