The squeaking of a staircase is quite irritating, especially during the night when you want to catch some sleep after a long day and your partners sneaks out to grab a cold drink from your quiet refrigerator.
Squeaky stairs alert everyone in the house that someone is moving up or down the stairs. The noise can be a bother since it distracts and diverts your attention from what you were doing. We shall explore how you can prevent stairs from creaking. Let’s dive.
What causes stairs to squeak?
A squeaking stair can be due to a loose joint on the wood planks, which causes the individual pieces to be weak and flimsy. Also, poorly constructed stairs and low quality materials may affect the structure leading to a squeaking sound.
Typically, wood shrinks during winter and eventually expand when hot. This imbalance affects its structural composition and may creak. Besides, wear and tear is also a contributing factor.
However, squeaking is not an indicator that the whole building is at risk of tumbling down. No! It is just a minor problem you can fix as a DIY project without bringing everything down and interfering with the entire architectural work of the building.
For starters, establish where the noise is coming from as this helps you in planning repair works. A stairway consists of the tread. It is basically, the upper horizontal portion of a step that allows you to ascend or descend the stair.
The other part is the riser which is a vertical portion that supports the tread. Then there are handrails on the sides running along the stairway which you hold on as you ascend or descend the stairs. It is an extension which is along the edges of a landing, and it prevents a person from falling over accidentally. It acts as a barrier too.
To fix squeaking stairs, you may need to contact a handyman who will study the actual problem and advise you accordingly.
Fixing the problem will allow you to enjoy a comfortable, peaceful, and quiet environment at home free from this nuisance. Here is how to fix squeaking stairs.
How To Fix Squeaky Stairs From Above
1. Repair the squeaking stairs
A creaking stair is not a risk but merely an annoying nuisance not capable of causing damage if addressed promptly. It is irritating and can get out of hand if there is a high number of users, especially in a family set up.
When the noise becomes unbearable, then it’s an issue that requires urgent attention. Creaking denies your privacy since everyone in the house will know when you are going upstairs or downstairs.
When you locate the creaking have it fixed the soonest. A creaking could be a small gap in the stair riser and the tread. However, regardless of the cause, fixing it will save you lots of headaches. A handyman usually uses glue to join the gaps together.
2. Cracked Treads or Risers
Most often, you will find cracks in the treads or risers. These may be due to humidity when temperatures soar or lack of adequate ventilation. A carpeted stairway may block air circulation and expose the wood to moisture.
Cracks call for urgent attention since it is an indication of looming danger. Your stairs may break and cave. A simple solution is to glue the planks together. Alternatively, you may consider replacing the tread.
3. Loose stair tread
An old staircase can loosen due to prolonged use. Likewise, poor construction, especially where wood is not allowed to dry, may lead to loose treads.
Seasonal contractions and expansions can also cause treads to loosen and tighten from time to time depending on weather conditions. Some types of wood may contract when it is cold and expand when the temperatures rise.
More often than not, loosening is usually caused by wobbly joinery of the treads to the risers. A loose tread is a real problem which is correctable. It’s essential to do a proper examination of the stairway starting from beneath the stairs if the access is possible. Fix it before the situation runs out of hand.
4. Detached or broken handrail
It is a severe condition that requires urgent attention upon discovery. The rails act as a barrier in case of a fall. It thereby protects you from reaching the ground with a thud. In addition, it provides support in the event of a slip and prevents injury.
When the rails are broken or loose, they may interfere with the strength of the whole stairway. The trends may weaken and fail to support your weight. Replace and tighten the loose screws that attach the rail to the wall to reinforce them and maintain the firmness of the whole structure.
5. Water damage
Wood and water are natural enemies. Water causes damage to the wood by softening and seriously affecting the strength of the treads and risers.
What happens? They easily break, and in such a situation, it calls for the replacement of affected portions. A professional handyman would be in a better position to fix the problem and bring back the stairway into a functional and robust structure.
6. Loosely fitted post
The post is the part that joins the guard rails onto the ground. When loose, it means that you may not hold onto the rail and your safety is at risk. A handyman can professionally fix the problem to ensure all other components are strong, safe, and free from squeaking.
7. Wear and Tear
Any item is prone to aging, wear and tear after prolonged use. A staircase is no exception, and as time goes by, a new facelift may be necessary.
You will realize that after using stairway for a considerable period, some creaking or squeaking emerges. Wood is not as permanent as concrete. You may consider replacing the old wood with a new one to reinforce and give your stairway a new facelift. You may as well replace with a concrete stairway which is durable and not prone to squeaking
Final thoughts on how to fix squeaky stairs
A stair is a vital structure that allows for easier access to upper floors. It is essential to take care of it for your comfort and that of other family members. It also accentuates your home, and a beautiful, sturdy and creak-free stairway will make heads turn.
Repair the squeaking treads and any other part for your enjoyment, peace, and comfort. Remember a stitch in time saves nine so inspect your stairway regularly to avert any possible accident or damage. Click here to learn more about quiet products.