Building stairs is one of the most challenging, time consuming building projects for most builders. Not all stair construction methods are equal. Some are much more user friendly and cost effective than others. Of course, in this economy, you need to save every penny on your deck stairs, basement stairs, or interior stairs. It’s interesting that many people with minimal experience are willing to tackle a simple deck project for the first time, but hit a brick wall when it comes to building stairs. It just seems complicated and out of reach for people with little or no experience. The good news is "you can build that stair".
Is there is a better way? Advances over the past several years has seen the introduction of many new stair technologies. One system that stands out is engineered, self-adjusting, stair brackets. This system makes stair construction easier, stronger and faster. Basic skill level requirements are all that is needed to build a perfect stair the first time. However, should you make a mistake, the brackets can be readjusted to reform the stair, eliminating the normal loss of stringers that is all too common in traditional stair construction.
Among those over the age of sixty-five stairs also present a very big health risk. This is frequently as a result of mobility related diseases, but a decreased sense of balance is also often a factor. If you or a loved one is unsteady on the stairs then it is important that you are extremely careful. Many people choose to install a stair lift to help promote stair safety. A stair lift can carry an individual up and down the stairs in a safe manner. Usually stair lifts present the best option by retaining the ability to access all areas of a home. This is because when you rely on someone’s help to climb up the stairs you are decreasing your risk of falling, but increasing their risk of falling. The other option of simply not using the areas of a home that require stairs access is usually not practical.
Over the past several years, much has been done to address deck and stair safety issues, but we still have a long way to go. One glaring example of the failure in deck and stair safety protocol is the industry standard of permitting "hot dipped galvanized" anchors, screws, hangers and other hardware to be in direct contact with ACQ, pressure treated wood. The galvanic corrosion created between the high copper content of the wood and the galvanizing is so severe that the normal industry standard of G90 galvanizing will corrode in as little as 12 months and G185, such as Z-Max® can be gone in 24 months. The industry (including code officials) has adopted G185 as a fall back position with no engineering testing available to substantiate the validity or longevity of this adoption...this is a "knee jerk" reaction and is an accident waiting to happen. Without a barrier between the pressure treated wood and galvanized hardware, serious corrosion is inevitable.
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