Deck Stairs Made Easy.

Deck Stairs are often the last part of the deck to be tackled because they are often the most difficult part of the deck to build. I’ve found a solution for building deck stairs that’s stronger, faster and easier than any system of stair building I’ve ever seen. I’ve built many decks in my early days as a professional. Building stairs was always something I had to tackle myself because I couldn’t trust anyone else to build the stairs correctly… the first time.

I’m referring to an adjustable, heavy duty steel stair bracket system, which allows you to make automatic adjustments to form any rise or run you require. You only need two stringers for deck stairs up to 7’ in width. No center stringers are needed at all because riser acts as a load-bearing joist, giving you strong stairs. Most of the saw cuts are eliminated and require only three to four cuts per stringer.

These EZ Stairs® brackets not only adjust, but are also approved as ‘joist hangers’. This allows you to attach 2” thick risers that span across the stair like floor joists, every 10” or 11” between the two stringers. This eliminates the need for several center stringers running down the stair as in conventional construction. Since there are only two stringers, you also eliminate the need to align and attach several cut stringers in order to build your stair.

The brackets also provide ‘code compliant’ rail post support. According to their accredited testing, the brackets are used to provide rail post support for any type of wood stair which meets the code requirement for 200lb. Lateral load at 42”. This has never been achieved on any wood stairs system.

This stair building system is much simpler and faster than conventional stair building, without sacrificing structural integrity or strength. The stairs turn out so well made that you won’t even hear a squeak. In addition to deck stairs, they can be used for interior stairs: basement stairs, tongue and groove stairs, and even concrete formwork. Check out http://www.ez-stairs.com

Instructions from the website:
Set the brackets on the two 2×6 stringer members using the spacers and pivot screws. Remove spacers and rotate brackets to adjust stair height. Fix brackets in position, attach risers and treads.

Before you begin, determine the exact number of steps you need and exactly how wide you would like your steps to span. If you need additional assistance in obtaining the appropriate measurements-you can quickly link on our brochure ‘Let’s Get Started’ section (available in English and Spanish)* and the free stair calculator at http://www.ez-stairs.com/widgets/stair_calculator/index.html

You will only need (2) 2×6’s per stringer/side*. Make sure when you purchase your 2×6’s that you get them as straight as possible. The 2×6’s will need to be at least 12″ longer than the total length of your stairs. Two stringers are sufficient to span up to 7′ wide. You will only need to make a maximum of 3 to 4 cuts per stringer no matter how many steps you will be building.

For risers you will use 2×8’s — for treads you can use 2×12’s. Utilizing additional EZ Stairs mini-composite cleat brackets you may use any 2×6 tread material wood/and or composite. Time saving tip: when you determine how many steps you will need and how wide you want to span…get all your risers and treads pre-cut to exact lengths before you begin.

For interior jobs you can use same as above or the following can be used for spans up to 42″ to 48″ wide. Stringers still need to be 2×6’s. Interior risers can be 2×8’s or 3/4″ to
1 1/8” plywood. Interior treads can be 2×12’s or 1 1/8″ to 3/4″ plywood with EZ Stairs, stairs can be ‘pre-built’ or built ‘in-place’.

Tools/Materials needed will be: a power drill, saw (skill saw is preferable, but not required, #8 1 1/4″ Phillips flat head or star/square drive screws for the stair brackets, #8 2 1/2″ deck screws for every 9″ of tread and riser connection and EZ Stair Spacers for customized riser and tread measurements.

Watch 3D animation first at www.ez-stairs.com

Set-up (1) stringer at a time by placing 2×6’s parallel on a flat surface…start 6″ from end by placing EZ Stairs spacer, then bracket and spacer…..down the line. When you have all your spacers and brackets lined up and tight insert 2 pivot screws in each bracket… without tightening the pivot screws. Remove spacers and pivot your brackets to your exact riser and tread combination. Insert remaining screws in all the brackets except the first and last step… these brackets will need to be quickly pivoted out of the way to make the required minimal end cuts. Repeat the process on stringer #2 and install all risers and treads.

* Interior or exterior stairs can be framed out and installed in most cases 2-3 hours or less.
* Minimal skill is required and due to the fact that with EZ Stairs saw-cuts are drastically reduced…..material is seldom wasted.
* Spacers are adjustable to allow for customized rise and tread configurations. Spacers are factory set at ‘G’… accomplishes most tread and rise requirements.

Building Stairs on a Budget: deck stairs, basement stairs, interior stairs and concrete stairs

In this age of economic downturn, it is more important than ever to save every dime possible on your building projects. One of the most expensive areas of construction is found in stair building. There are several reasons.

First, stairs are often considered the exclusive domain of the “stair specialist”. Many people consider such a project to be well out of their range of expertise, and they reluctantly call in the “specialist”. Needless to say they are usually horrified at the high price, and often feel that they have no alternative but to either accept the bid or put the project on hold.

Secondly, stairs are usually more difficult than most construction projects because there are some very specific guidelines which are required by code, and if you get the initial planning wrong, you could be faced with tearing out and building the stairs again.

The standard or traditional methods of stair building have usually consisted of the marking out and freehand cutting of multiple stair stringers. Next, the stringers are attached and aligned and then the risers and treads are attached. This is a very cumbersome process which takes a great degree of skill and often, even the “specialist” gets it wrong.

The good news is, you can use an engineered stair building system, otherwise known as adjustable brackets. The benefits are that they’re much easier to install and only a very minimal skill level is necessary- compared to traditional framing. This system consists of adjustable stair brackets, that automatically adjust to the exact rise and run you require. The brackets are approved as joist hangers which allow the stair risers to be used structurally, carrying the load across the stair like floor joists. This kind of system is very strong and it has been tested for stairs up to nine feet wide, using only the two outside stringers. This completely eliminates the need for any interior stringers. The outside stringers then require only 3 to 4 cuts each, and the risers and treads are simply attached to the brackets. If you make a mistake, simply readjust the brackets. This kind of system is very versatile and can be used for deck stairs, basement stairs, any kind of interior stairs, as well as cement stairs.

Engineered adjustable stair brackets will  build finished interior stairs, basement stairs, deck and porch Stairs.

How will you save?

1. Little or no wasted wood because additional center stringers are eliminated  and only three to four end cuts are required for each of the outside stringer.

2. Since you only need two stringers, time is saved by eliminating the need to cut and align additional center stringers. No center stringers, means no squeaks.

3. The Brackets do the work by equally adjusting to give you the exact rise and run, eliminating costly mistakes and simplifying the whole process.

4. The system is so accurate that finished interior stairs can be built by installing finished risers and treads directly onto the brackets, eliminating traditional rough framing and up to 80% of the finished trim work normally required with traditional stair building methods.

5. Once the two stringers are built, the rest of the stair goes together like an erector set. A once very complicated job has been simplified to the point where a person with only basic skills can easily build a stronger, accurate stair and get it right the first time. See a 3D demo of how it works.

 How much can you save?

For interior finished stairs, the “stair specialist” can easily save up to $500.00 per flight because most of the traditional “custom trim work” is automatically eliminated. For most two story homes, that means $1000.00 savings. The DIY, the savings are obviously greater.

An approved “Engineered Stair System” eliminates the need to cut stringers and is tested to be much stronger and faster than conventional construction. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or a do-it-yourselfer, you will build fast, strong and accurate stairs, on a budget.

EZ Stairs® products allow builders to build stairs with a wide range of materials such as redwood, cedar, tropical wood, treated wood, untreated wood, vinyl, steel, and composites. This stair adjustable bracket building system allows for customized rise and treads configurations which can be adjusted to meet all building codes for any interior or exterior application- ICC approved. It is the only adjustable stair bracket system available anywhere. To help you figure out how many stairs you will need, the website provides a free stair calculator.

EZ Stairs® introduced the new patented adjustable dual-purpose exterior/interior brackets in 2003. In 2004, it won Pro Sales Magazine’s Editor’s Choice award for new product innovation in the construction industry. In 2005, it introduced its composite deck compatibility solution and was chosen for LBM Journal’s ‘Hot Products’ Award at the 2005 International Builders Show, and again voted one of the fifty ‘Hot Products’ at the 2008 International Builders Show.

For more information, visit the ez-stair.com website, or call 866-693-9570.

EZ Stairs® has been voted one of the ’50 Hot Products’ at the International Builder’s Show -several times. This stair adjustable bracket building system allows for customized rise and treads configurations which can be adjusted to meet all building codes for any interior or exterior application- ICC approved. It is It is the only adjustable stair bracket system available anywhere and can be used with a wide range of materials.
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Stair Building Innovations Make Easy to Install Staircase Construction

Building a staircase can be a daunting task for a do-it-yourselfer as well as a pro.  Traditional stair building methods are rigid and unforgiving. If you miscalculate or need to make adjustments, then you often have to throw out your materials and start over.  Luckily there are some new products and techniques on the market that can simplify and speed up stair construction.

One innovation that has many advantages compared to conventional stair building is the adjustable bracket method.  This technique differs from conventional stair construction with its ease of installation. With adjustable stair brackets such as EZ Stairs®, you can custom fit deck stairs into an exact area, forming any rise or run required.

Here are eight advantages of using adjustable brackets over traditional stair building methods:

1- Allows for a custom fit.

2- Ease of installation: 2 stringers, 3 saw cuts each

3- Less waste of materials.

4- No math skills required.

5- Simple adjustments correct errors.

6- Approved as joist hangers.

7- They provide ‘code compliant’ rail post support.

8. Big time savings in comparison.

This is how the adjustable bracket method works:

Step one: Set the brackets on the two 2×6 stringer members using the spacers and pivot screws.

Step two: Remove spacers and rotate brackets to adjust stair height.

Step three:Fix brackets in position, attach risers and treads. Before you begin, determine the exact number of steps you need and exactly how wide you would like your steps to span.

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For example, to make deck stairs up to seven feet wide using the automatic adjustable system, you only need three saw cuts per stringer and only two stringers are necessary. No center stringers are needed at all because riser acts as a load-bearing joist, spanning across the stair between the two stringers, giving you stronger stairs. Literally, in three steps you can build deck stairs. With the traditional method you must custom cut, align and support several stringers as needed for the stair width. This requires a high degree of skill.

There’s a lot less waste of wood too. With traditional stringers you cut away half the strength when forming the stair. Also, you don’t have the frustration with math and all the mistakes that come from mathematical error with the new building method. In most cases, a simple adjustment will eliminate the error. This will save you a lot of time. See what kinds of stair projects you can build.

Adjustable brackets not only adjust, but are also approved as ‘joist hangers’. This allows you to attach 2″ thick risers that span across the stair like floor joists, every 10″ or 11″ between the two stringers. This eliminates the need for several center stringers running down the stair as in conventional construction. Since there are only two stringers, you also eliminate the need to align and attach several cut stringers in order to build your stair.

Another benefit to using brackets is that they provide ‘code compliant’ rail post support. According to the accredited testing, the brackets are used to provide rail post support for any type of wood stair which meets the code requirement for 200lb. Lateral load at 42″. Conventional stair building doesn’t have a good solution for this rail post attachment problem. If a large person presses on the railing in traditional stair framing, it can easily give way.

So, for your next stair building project consider using the EZ Stairs adjustable bracket method.  It will save you time, materials, and a lot of unnecessary stress.

Building stairs that are easy to install.

Cut your labor in half with EZ Stairs’ adjustable brackets.

Welcome to the New EZ Stairs Blog and Website.

Latest EZ Stair News: Our adjustable stair brackets double as a rail post support, making strong stair railings that not only meet code but exceed it.

New Simple Solution for Stair Rail Safety: 15 Facts

                                            ICC-ESR # 2295 – Released January 2012

1.    Code requires all railing to hold 200 lb lateral load.

2.    This also applies to stair railing but in the past has not been enforced, since it was not possible to obtain            code compliant loads. New EZ Stairs® technology has now made code compliancy possible.

3.    Residential code requires 200 lb at 36” above the nose of the tread.

4.    Commercial code requires 200 lb at 42″ above the nose of the tread.

5.    The new EZ Stairs® R/P Support bracket is the first and only ICC/ES tested and accepted bracket which meets  code requirements for both residential and commercial wood stairs. ICC-ES Acceptance # ESR 2295 (January 2012)

6.    The EZ Stairs® bracket is designed to work equally well for all common stair types – cut stringers, stair angles, EZ Stairs® stacked stringers and housed or notched stringer types.

7.    EZ Stairs® brackets have been tested to exceed the 200 lb load requirements by a safety factor of 250%. This is equivalent to a lateral load of 500 lbs. at 42” (commercial).

8.    The EZ Stairs® brackets when tested at extreme measures, were subjected to a load in excess of 5,000 lbs.

9.    The strength of the EZ Stairs® bracket connection lies in the firm anchoring of the bracket flanges to the tread and blocking (at back of tread) or rise (at front of tread) – go to www.ez-stairs.com  for more information.

10.  EZ Stairs® introduces a simple and economical solution which meets all code requirements for both new construction and structural retrofits for existing rail posts.

11.  The National Safety Council (2011 Safety Statistics) reports that slips and falls are the leading cause of death for persons over age 65. The majority of these lethal injuries are falls from one level to another which includes fatalities and serious injuries on stairs.

12.  These documented statistics establish stairs as the most dangerous area of any deck, well in excess of the more widely and publicly discussed events such as deck collapse which claim relatively few lives when compared to the fatalities resulting from slips and falls on stairs.

13.  When anyone travels up or down a stair, proper safety precautions require a firm grip of the hand rail. If the rail is not properly secured and movement occurs, the ability to maintain a safe grip is compromised.

14.  Maintaining a safe, firm grip on stair railing, can reduce with age, therefore, it is essential to maintain rail post code requirements for rail stability. Failure to comply with set code requirements will increase builders & contractors potential risk of liability.

15.  It’s just a matter of time, as the construction industry is continually made more aware of real  areas of liability, that contractors will start to be exposed and vulnerable to litigation for failing to meet specific documented code requirements… specifically in the stair construction arena of lateral load stair rail safety.

How to build stairs with EZ Stairs
EZ Stairs brackets can also be used as rail post supports.

Build strong, code compliant rail post supports with EZ Stairs.