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The steps to follow to renovate your staircase

The steps to follow to renovate your staircase

Interior renovationsThe steps to follow to renovate your staircase

When you begin to notice your staircase is starting to deteriorate, it is very important that you take the necessary steps to care for their state and bring them back to life. Depending on the size of the section that is damaged, the problem could be dangerous and result in injury. These are just some reasons why renovating your staircase is an essential part of having your home in top shape.

Before undertaking a project like renovating your stairs, it is important to have an idea as to the extent of the damage and necessary repair work. By this, we mean whether you will have to completely replace your staircase or just update it from an aesthetic point of view.

The steps to renovating your staircase

Source: Canva

Before undertaking any work, you will need to check with your municipality and apply for any necessary work permits. When it comes to the stairs themselves, there are several elements to keep in mind from the angles of each individual step being perfect for extremely precise measurements. Contacting your municipality will help you get informed as to the different standards necessary to complete the renovation project in a safe and legal manner. For a simple restoration of your stairs, follow the steps below:

1- Laying the foundation for the renovation project

When preparing to replace your staircase, it is important to completely remove anything that is covering the stairs and to do so properly. Be careful when removing items such as paint, carpet or nails which are on the stairs. 

2- Doubling the stringer/skirt board

Depending on how your staircase is designed, you may decide to opt for reattaching new steps or risers over the old ones that need replacing. However, if your staircase contains a stringer, you will need to double it and apply a new coating in order to bring it back to life.

3- Coating the stringer

In order to apply a new coating on your skirt board, you will need to make a template. To do so, you can take pieces of rigid paper, have them overlap at the corners and stick them together with tape. Then you can place the finished template on the coating, transferring the cut to the felt. After checking that the dimensions are precise, you can cut away the lining of the stringer. If your coating is accurate, you can proceed to apply an adhesive.

Source: Canva

4- Putting on the cover

For this step, saw the coating to the exact dimensions it needs to be. Then, once you’re certain it's a perfect size, you can nail it down.

5- Overlaying the steps and risers

Source: Canva

Instead of a paper template, which will need to be remade for every step, it is better to use a gauge or a template for stairs. An electric jigsaw and a table saw are highly recommended for this type of job. You can create the finishes with sandpaper before moving on to the bonding step.

You will also need to take the proper measurements for the riser. Again, you will have to make the coating and stick it to the steps. Repeat this process for every step on the staircase. Start with the cover, then the riser. Soon enough, you will be walking up and down your stairs!

6- Make the cover of the stringer and apply the final joints

Finally, you will have to measure the upper part of the silt in your staircase. Cut the coating to the correct dimensions and stick it once more. Make sure to properly seal all edges.

An interior staircase that is in perfect harmony with your home decor

Your staircase is an integral part of your home, allowing you to move across different levels with ease while also being a major architectural feature of your home. Therefore, it is essential that it sits in harmony with the overall style of your home and your choice of decoration. Most stairs are made of hardwood; such as oak, maple, ash, etc. These are ideal if you want to redecorate or repaint your staircase.

Doing the work yourself or hiring a professional? 

Keep in mind that this kind of work is best handled by a skilled professional. Licensed contractors are able to advise you accordingly and help you make the right decisions for your specific job and needs. Moreover, staircases experience a lot of wear and tear, which is why it is so important that they be well designed and solidly built.

Recap of the main steps of a staircase renovation project

Steps to follow
What you need to do
1) Removing the previous materials
  • remove anything on the steps and risers (moquette, paint and others)

2) Doubling the stringer/skirt board


  • you can put old steps or risers back on the old ones
  • if the staircase has a stringer, you will need to double it and have a new coating on it
3) Cutting and gluing the stringer
  • make a template
  • use rigid pieces, which will overlap at the corners and paste them
  • place the template on the coating while reproducing the shape of the template
  • cut the stringer with a jigsaw
  • apply glue to it
4) Putting on the cover
  • take specific measurements
  • don't forget to nail the front section
5) Overlaying the steps and risers
  • ideally use a stair gauge or template
  • use an electric jigsaw and a circular table saw
  • finish with sanding paper before moving on to bonding
  • measure dimensions for the steps
  • make the coating and paste it (again)
  • repeat the same process for all steps
  • start with the surface material and continue with the riser and the step
6) Making the cover for the stringer and applying the final joints
  • measure the top of the stringer on your staircase
  • cut the material to the right size and paste it
  • use sealing joint on the edges

Get 3 renovation quotes for your stairway renovation project can help you find a general contractor. If you submit your project to us, we’ll put you in contact with top-rated contractors. Fill in the form on the homepage (it only takes a few minutes), and you will get estimates from trusted professionals. 

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Last modified 2023-11-07

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