Peninsular Lumber Company


How to Build Deck Stairs

Check out this step-by-step guide on how to build deck stairs.

Building a deck is a great way to create an inviting space to enjoy the outdoors. However, a deck isn’t complete without an access point, and that’s why you need building materials for deck stairs. If you’ve ever wondered how to build deck stairs, you might be surprised to learn that with the right preparation, tools, and step-by-step guide, it’s an achievable DIY project.

This guide is designed to walk you through how to build deck stairs using lumber, making your custom home-building journey more rewarding. Whether you’re a resident of the Tampa Bay area or beyond, our instructions can help you transform your outdoor space with a one-of-a-kind deck staircase!

Step 1: Calculate and Measure

The first step is to calculate the total rise, which is the vertical distance from the deck to the ground. Divide this by the height of each step to get the number of risers required. Your treads, the horizontal part of each step, should have a depth of at least 10 inches. The number of treads will be one less than the number of risers since the deck itself serves as the top tread. It’s essential to get these calculations right, as they form the foundation of your deck stairs.

Step 2: Mark and Cut the Stringers

Once you have your measurements, it’s time to mark the rise and run of each step on a pressure-treated 2×12 using a framing square. Cut along your marks with a circular saw, but avoid cutting beyond the lines. Use a handsaw to finish the cuts accurately. Repeat this process for each stringer, using the first stringer as a template to mark for consistency.

Step 3: Attach the Stringers

Attach the stringers to the deck framing using angle brackets and corrosion-resistant screws. The spacing between the stringers should be about 16″ on center for residential stairs. However, the spacing could be more or less depending on the width of the stairs. Make sure that the stairs are at least 36 inches wide to meet code requirements. At this stage, stability and accuracy are paramount for attaching stair stringers.

Step 4: Install the Treads and Risers

The next step in how to build deck stairs is to attach the stair risers, the vertical parts of the stairs, to the stringers using screws. Then, place the stair treads on top of the stringers, ensuring they overhang the risers by about an inch. Using pressure-treated wood or deck boards from a lumber company for the treads and risers is key for durability. Also, don’t forget that the tread thickness can affect the height, comfort, and safety of your stairs.

Step 5: Add the Rail Posts

Rail posts provide the foundation for the stair railing. These posts should be secured using bolts and blocked for additional support. Depending on your design, rail posts could be installed before or after the treads and risers. It’s always important to make sure these rail posts are strong enough to withstand lateral pressure.

Step 6: Install the Railing

The last step in building deck stairs is installing the railing. Choose a design that complements your deck and meets safety codes. Your local building codes in the Tampa Bay area will provide specifics on the required height and spacing of the balusters. Installing the railing properly is not just about appearance; it is also a vital safety measure.

Wrapping Things Up

Each step in building deck stairs, whether it’s calculating the number of treads and risers or installing the railing, requires careful attention to detail. Once done right, the result will be a durable and visually pleasing set of deck stairs that enhance the overall value of your custom home.

Need More Tips on How to Build Deck Stairs? Give Pen Lumber a Call!

The key to a successful build is preparation. Understand the specifications of your deck, know the number of risers and treads needed, and always mark and cut carefully. It’s worth noting that pressure-treated lumber from a reputable lumber company in Tampa, like Peninsular Lumber, will always yield superior results.

Peninsular Lumber works with a wide range of custom home builders in Tampa, as we know the ins and outs of how to build deck stairs. Building deck stairs might seem daunting, but with the right tools, materials, and guidance, you can add beautiful deck stairs to your custom home.

Visit our lumber yard in Tampa Bay today for all your deck and staircase building needs!