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If you have carpeted stairs, go look and report back :)

Discussion in 'Home Improvement' started by mattadams, March 18, 2013.

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  1. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    I'm pretty sure that very few people, even with carpeted stairs, have carpet on the edges of the stairs (called the skirting I believe), the piece that goes from the stair itself to the baseboard.
    I'm sure there is some reason our house has it (probably was cheaper/easier or something) but we're looking at replacing the carpet and I'm considering bringing in a carpenter to make some wood skirts to match the baseboards before the new carpet comes in. On one level we're considering doing hardwood floors, in which case we'll HAVE to get rid of the skirting because how stupid would carpet edges and hardwood stairs look? Pretty stupid, I'm guessing.
    So, if you have carpeted stairs, do you have carpet on the edges, or do you have wood?

    Attached a photo so you can see what I'm talking about.
     

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    Last edited: March 18, 2013
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  3. IAmTodd

    IAmTodd 4x Explorer Veteran

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    I have hardwood, make sure to get some nice treads if you go with hardwood on stairs. Otherwise they get a little dangerous.
     
  4. Scott B.

    Scott B. Well-Known Member

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    Matt,

    I have never seen carpet on the "skirt" like that.

    Mine, and all that I have seen, are painted wood.

    If/when you remove the carpet, you might have to replace the wood that is there - it is probably low-paint-grade (or less).
     
  5. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    Todd, we're actually planning on doing a runner of carpet down the center, more than likely... we have dogs and kids in and out of the house and don't want anyone to slip and fall if it can be helped!
    Scott, thanks for the info. I'm thinking of pulling back the carpet on one of the skirts at some point just to see what I'm working with (if worse comes to worse, it just gets re-carpeted if it looks like it'll be a huge project to overcome), my guess is it'll be nasty wood and probably need to be covered up with other wood or replaced.
     
  6. Blee1099

    Blee1099 Evil Asian EF Vendor Moderator Emeritus

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    Typically you won't see carpet on the stringers. Wierd that someone did that, typically you'd have carpet on the tread and riser only. My guess is that the stringers are painted plywood. Only way to find out is like you said to pull it off. Its probably a single piece or multiple pieces that cover the entire run of stringers. At most you'd probably have some crown staples to remove and if your **** about it, holes in the stringers from the staples to fill and paint.
     
  7. FIND

    FIND Well-Known Member

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    Well now, that's an odd thing to see.
     
  8. Burns

    Burns Elite Explorer Moderator Emeritus

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    I have never seen that and we do not have it that way on the stairs.
     
  9. Turdle

    Turdle Moderator Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    What confuses me is how someone actually thought that upholstery job was going to be easier than fixing it correctly. I have never seen anything like that, not even in Nebraska.
     
  10. 2TimingTom

    2TimingTom Well-Known Member

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    Don't think I've ever seen that.

    They did all that and didn't staple the carpet up and under the part of the tread that sticks out. Interesting.
     
  11. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    yeah... and on at least one of the stairs the carpeting is coming loose and I usually only notice it when vacuuming, but its a safety concern nonetheless. Part of why we're replacing the carpet... that and it is 15 years old, and portions of it have high doses of dog vomit (before our dog passed away she would yarf fairly regularly, and even with the spotbot and a full-blown carpet shampooer, you can still tell it's not quite right... all the more reason to replace it).
     
  12. DB_1

    DB_1 Elite Ranger Elite Explorer

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    No kidding, if it was a carpet installer i'm surprised they did that unless they were specifically told to do it. Maybe the previous homeowner did it to impress the wife..."Hey honey, this will look great won't it?"
     
  13. wbdavid

    wbdavid Member

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    20 years building and remodling houses I don't think I have ever seen it wrapped all the way up like that. I have seen the stringers carpeted up the side but never over the top too, Like on the lower part. I think if the carpet is flush with the top trim (as it looks in the picture) then you would have to add trim if it is higher would only need to repair what ever damage was done. I would say try and pull the lower corner up a bit to see what it loos like, could be stapled back down.
     
  14. JDraper

    JDraper Somewhat Functional Moderator Emeritus

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    My place came with carpeted stairs, but the stringers were hardwood and not carpeted. Several years back I ripped all the carpeting out of the house (we have allergies) and put down hardwood. I also ripped out the stairs and converted them to hardwood treads and risers.
     
  15. snoranger

    snoranger Well-Known Member

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    The stairs in my old townhouse were just like that, as were the 300 other units in the development.
     
  16. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    Well at least I don't feel TOO bad now :).
    I'm still a little nervous but possibly sometime this week I'm going to peel back some of the carpet to see what I can see. I have a feeling I'll end up having ot have some woodwork done, I don't expect the wood will look nice, beyond just having staple holes and so forth in it...
    I will try and take a picture of my basement stairs... they aren't carpeted, but they are what I expect to find when I pull back the carpet. They also stick out an inch or so from the drywall and there is a big gap between the drywall and the wood itself.
     
  17. toypaseo

    toypaseo Flunked daycare Elite Explorer

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    In my parent's house, there are no "skirts", BUT it is carpeted up the wall to a certain point. Like the carpet starts at the top of the top stair, and the top I'll have to take a pic of it sometime...
     
  18. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    This is a picture of the basement stairs... kind of what I'm expecting to find underneath the carpet, unfortunately... but you can see it sticks out from the drywall at least an inch or two, the drywall is uneven and doesn't butt up to the stairs, etc. If this is what we've got to work with then I'm not sure how it could be made to look "normal", and might be easiest just to re-carpet, even though I don't like the look...
     

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  19. c0rtney

    c0rtney Active Member

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    I've been installing hardwood floor and just general woodwork for the last 7 or so years and I have seen this in houses before it's not that uncommon. I'm assuming that when you pull the carpet back on those stringers it will be a 2x12 maybe it'll be painted. I re did my stairs going down in the basement and even though it didn't have carpet on them the stringer stuck out like in your picture and this is what I did

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Not the greatest pic but it's an option for you :thumbsup:
     
  20. wbdavid

    wbdavid Member

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    What cortney did would be how I would fix your basement stairs. Or place another trim board on top of the stringer. If your looking for quick inexpensive options. If your thinking hard wood they have these new retro treads that work pretty good just glue them down to the contractor grade pine treads and stain. They can be found at Lowe's.
     
  21. mattadams

    mattadams Moderator Emeritus

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    good stuff, looks great, thanks for sharing! I probably won't be fixing the basement stairs unless we finish that someday, so those aren't a huge concern, but its good ot know for the other stairs :).
     

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