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Old 11-20-2015, 08:47 PM   #1
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How would you seal exterior staircase made of plywood?


Hello,

My 13 year old staircase is covered with exterior carpet. The steps and risers are plywood, I believe not pressure-treated.

Over the years, the bottom steps have been exposed to dripping water, and ground-level moisture, due to the occasional rain we get in San Diego county. They are rotted and I'm replacing the plywood.

I'm looking into ways to keep that rainwater away from the stairs, but I don't yet know whether I'll succeed.

The carpet probably is trapping moisture between itself and the wood, which would contribute to the problem. Are there non-ugly alternatives to carpet? The wood is not attractive enough to be left bare, in my opinion.

Actually, I'd rather not go through the trouble of replacing the carpet. Can I just use a really good sealant on top of the wood, so the carpet's moisture won't matter?

As an alternative to a deck sealant treatment, should I consider something like SikaFlex Self-Leveling Sealant? Or even ordinary caulk, spread over all the wood?

From experience, I suspect that ordinary house paint wouldn't seal well enough.

Thanks in advance for your ideas!
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Old 11-21-2015, 04:49 AM   #2
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Paint would be better than the carpet. Carpet holds the moisture, a painted surface dries faster.
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Old 11-21-2015, 09:48 AM   #3
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Post a picture.
No form of plywood is going to work for outside stairs, not even marine plywood.
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Old 11-21-2015, 11:19 AM   #4
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I don't think a sealant is what your looking for, a better alternative would be a water repellent, google "Prosoco" to see if it's available in your area.
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Old 11-21-2015, 02:25 PM   #5
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Here are photos


As you can see, the "side walls" supporting the steps are plywood too, and on the left side there is siding panel material concealing the plywood.







That metal trim along each side of the steps covers the ugly edges of wood. And the metal is sized with the thickness of the carpet accounted for. If I get rid of the carpet, I must do something about the edges previously covered by that metal.

I fear that paint, if I found any tough enough to be walked on, would be slippery. Maybe some slip-resisting treads could be placed on top of the paint.
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Old 11-21-2015, 02:30 PM   #6
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You can add Shark Grip to your paint to provide traction.
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Last edited by Gymschu; 11-21-2015 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:37 AM   #7
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Maybe....

http://www.completemobilehomesupply....Steps_s/50.htm


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