How Much Support Do Stairs Need?


I’ll put it simply – unless you hear otherwise from a professional, the walls around your stairs are load bearing.

How are stairs supported in a house?

The framing members that support a stairway are called stringers. … While the center stringer will always be a “cut stringer” based on the unit rise and unit run of the stair, outer stringers can be cut or “housed.” A housed stringer has routed slots that allow treads and risers to be wedged into place.

Do stairs need support in the middle?

3 Answers. Stair stringers are normally designed to be supported at the top and bottom, with no further support needed.

Can I remove studs under stairs?

It can certainly be removed but it would take the addition of a header with appropriate support at the top of the area that is being opened up to support the landing in the upstairs portion of the stairway.

How far apart are studs under stairs?

Measure from the corner of a wall to find studs, alternatively. Each stud should begin 16 to at most 24 inches from the last.

What happens if a load bearing wall is removed?

Removing a load bearing wall may create structural problems in a home, including sagging ceilings, unleveled floors, drywall cracks, and sticking doors. … Removal of load bearing walls without properly supporting the load they’re carrying may occasionally result in a structural collapse and even injury.

Are studs under stairs load bearing?

Make sure studs are not load-bearing. If they are, reinforcing studs and headers will need to be constructed. Use a reciprocating saw to remove the studs to fully expose the area. Start by cutting through the studs at the top and then pull or pry the studs away from the floor.

What is minimum stair tread depth?

For each going: minimum 215mm, maximum 355mm. The going shall be not greater than the tread depth (TD) plus a maximum gap of 30 mm between the rear edge of one tread and the nosing of the tread above.

What is building code for stairs?

Stair riser heights shall be 7 inches (178 mm) maximum and 4 inches (102 mm) minimum. Stair tread depths shall be 11 inches (279 mm) minimum. The riser height shall be measured vertically between the leading edges of adjacent treads.

Why are stairs so steep in old houses?

Stairs are steep in an older house for a variety of reasons. … Also, steeper steps were more common because adequate headroom within the staircase wasn’t as big of a priority. People were smaller than today and it wasn’t necessarily a huge deal to lower your head a bit as you walked down a set of stairs.

Who can tell you if a wall is load bearing?

Assess your basement — Look in your basement or crawl space for steel beams or joists. If you do spot joists in your basement and there is a wall that runs perpendicular, this wall is most likely load bearing. If the wall is parallel above the joists, it’s most likely not a load-bearing wall.

Do I need a structural engineer to remove a load-bearing wall?

Walls which are load bearing can be removed but it is a complex and expensive process which you need a structural engineer to oversee therefore you should always take professional advice before doing so.

Do single-story houses have load bearing walls?

In a single-story home with a stick-built gabled roof, the bearing walls are the exterior walls where the rafters rest. The load from the roof is transferred from the rafters to the walls and down to the foundation footings. … If it is perpendicular to the ceiling joists, it bears the load of the roof or floor above it.

Can I use my iPhone as a stud finder?

Stud Finder® 4+

This app will help you detect ferrous metal objects. It uses the magnetometer to measure the magnetic field when your iPhone is placed near ferrous metal objects.

Are studs always 16 apart?

Studs are boards that function as framing elements in your home, supporting the walls. You may wonder, how far apart are studs in my home? They’re always spaced either 16 or 24 inches on-center (measured from center to center) along the wall and run between the floor and ceiling.

Is drywall required under stairs?

Building Code Requirements

The drywall does not have to be fire-rated, and you can use SHEETROCK or some other brand of gypsum wall board as long as the product is at least 1/2 inch thick. If the area beneath the stairs is completely enclosed with no access at all, the code does not require drywall under the stairs.

What is load bearing under stairs?

Before removing a wall from around a stairway, determine whether it is load bearing; that is, whether it supports parts of the building above it. A wall probably is load bearing if it is near the center of the house and runs parallel to its length, or is perpendicular to ceiling joists resting on its top.

How much weight can a staircase hold?

Reply: 29 CFR 1910.24(c) states; “Fixed stairways shall be designed and constructed to carry a load of five times the normal live load anticipated but never of less strength than to carry safely a moving concentrated load of 1,000 pounds” .


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