Carpentry & Home Improvement Skills : How to Calculate Stair Height & Depth

Carpentry & Home Improvement Skills : How to Calculate Stair Height & Depth


What’s comfortable, what’s comfortable in
stairs? I’m Robert Markey, I’ve been doing construction for many years, I’m going to
talk to you about stair height and depth, essentially the height of the risers and the
depth of the treads. Now in order for our stairs to be comfortable, there wants to be
a proportion, a definite proportion between the height of the riser and the depth of the
tread. There’s a couple of formulas that we can use to determine that. The first is the
riser plus the tread is between seventeen and seventeen and a half. O.k., let’s see
how we did ya. About a nine inch riser with an eight and a half inch, eight and a quarter
inch, I mean a nine inch tread and an eight and a quarter inch riser. Nine plus eight
and a quarter plus is seventeen and a quarter. Right on the money there. So this would be
a comfortable, comfortable stair. O.k., the other way is the riser times the tread is
between seventy and seventy five. So let’s make that nine times eight and a quarter,
nine time eight is seventy two and another and a half, so we’re still in that ball park.
O.k., so this officially is a comfortable tread and riser. Now what happens is if you’ve
been in a let’s say, a hotel where they have very long treads, you get these very small
risers. You may have a fourteen inch tread and so you’ve got you know, three, three and
a half risers. So you’re going up in this long staircase. If you’ve got a basement stairs,
that’s very steep, you’re going to have the opposite. You maybe have a five inch tread
and maybe a twelve inch riser or seven inch tread and a ten inch riser. However you do
this you want to have that, that formula, your riser plus your own is between seventeen
and seventeen and a half and that means as you go up the stairs, it’s comfortable. Steep
is comfortable, shallow it’s comfortable, pretty standard. Robert Markey and we’ve been
talking about treads and risers for stairs.

4 thoughts on “Carpentry & Home Improvement Skills : How to Calculate Stair Height & Depth

  1. Very useful info – I didn't realize that. But, it makes sense that if you change one dimension you change the other also, in order that your diagonal distance is a reasonable and standard stride.

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