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Closed Stair Risers

Most high-end deck projects use closed risers to finish the stairs. Open risers sometimes appear cheap and unfinished. They also are often in violation of IRC code for decks over 30", which maintains that they meet the same requirements as guardrail infill. Stair risers may not have openings present that would allow a 4” diameter sphere to pass through. Most risers are made from deck boards or fascia material. Make sure the material is heavy duty enough to resist feet kicking the risers. If you are using 1x material, you may want to install blocking behind the riser board for added strength. Low-voltage lights can be installed into the riser boards in order to meet the IRC code for stair illumination. Most deck stairs use a nosed tread that extends beyond the riser board, which looks attractive and protects it from being kicked loose from above.


Popular Stairs Articles
Staircases

Box Steps and Stairs

Learn how to build a set of box platforms to act as stairs for a low deck. You don't need to cut stair stringers.

Staircases

Cutting Stair Stringers

Step-by-step instructions for cutting your 2x12 deck stair stringers with a circular saw.

Staircases

Stair Tread Nosing

Learn how to install treads to overlap the riser boards.

Next Step: Railings Articles
Deck Railing Types

Glass Rails

Installing glass rails will usually require you to build the rail frame first and take precise measurements to custom order the tempered safety glass...

Deck Railing Types

How to Build & Install an Outdoor Deck Gate

In this easy-to-follow guide, we explain the process of building a deck gate and installing it on your deck.

Deck Railing Types

Top 18 Deck Railing Ideas & Designs

Railings add the finishing touch to your deck. Get inspired by these deck railing ideas and styles from Decks.com and make your outdoor space unique.

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More Helpful Resources

Explore Articles by Topic

Create a free account and get instant & exclusive access to all that Decks.com has to offer:

Checkmark 1,000+ How-To articles
Checkmark 80+ Free Deck Plans
Checkmark Deck Planning Calculators
Checkmark Free & Simple Deck Design Tool
Staircases

Closed Stair Risers

Most high-end deck projects use closed risers to finish the stairs. Open risers sometimes appear cheap and unfinished. They also are often in violation of IRC code for decks over 30", which maintains that they meet the same requirements as guardrail infill. Stair risers may not have openings present that would allow a 4” diameter sphere to pass through. Most risers are made from deck boards or fascia material. Make sure the material is heavy duty enough to resist feet kicking the risers. If you are using 1x material, you may want to install blocking behind the riser board for added strength. Low-voltage lights can be installed into the riser boards in order to meet the IRC code for stair illumination. Most deck stairs use a nosed tread that extends beyond the riser board, which looks attractive and protects it from being kicked loose from above.


Popular Stairs Articles
Staircases

Box Steps and Stairs

Learn how to build a set of box platforms to act as stairs for a low deck. You don't need to cut stair stringers.

Staircases

Building an ADA Deck Ramp

Learn how to build an ADA-accessible wheelchair ramp onto your deck to meet building codes. Ramps must have a 1:12 slope.

Staircases

Support Long Stringers

Long stair stringers may need extra support from installing a brace at mid-span.

Next Step: Railings Articles
Deck Railing Types

Glass Rails

Installing glass rails will usually require you to build the rail frame first and take precise measurements to custom order the tempered safety glass...

Deck Railing Types

How to Choose the Right Deck Railing

As one of the most visible elements of a deck, railings add support, safety and style. Get tips for choosing the right deck railing at Decks.com.

Deck Railing Types

Vinyl Railing Reviews

Compare Vinyl Deck Railings to wood, aluminum, and composite. Find reviews and cost information to help choose the best deck railing for your home at Decks.com.

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