How to Install Stair Treads over Existing Stairs

How To Install Stair Treads Over Existing Stairs

Stair treads are an essential component of any staircase. They provide a non-slip surface for your feet, protect your stairs from wear and tear, and enhance the overall appearance of your staircase. If you’re looking to update the look of your stairs without replacing them entirely, installing stair treads over existing stairs is a great option. In this article, we’ll show you how to install stair treads over existing stairs, step-by-step.


Precision is key as a man carefully trims the stair treads to fit his existing stairs for a seamless installation.
Precision is key as a man carefully trims the stair treads to fit his existing stairs for a seamless installation.

Before you begin the installation process, you need to gather the necessary tools and materials. You’ll need stair treads, a tape measure, a saw, adhesive, a notched trowel, a utility knife, a hammer, and a nail set. You may also need sandpaper, depending on the condition of your existing stairs.

After gathering the necessary tools and materials, you need to measure your stairs to ensure proper fit. Start by measuring the width of each stair tread, making sure to measure the width at the widest point of each tread. Next, measure the depth of each stair tread, making sure to measure from the front edge of the tread to the back edge of the tread. Once you have these measurements, you can purchase stair treads that fit your stairs perfectly.

Finally, you need to clean your existing stairs before installation. Use a vacuum to remove any dust or debris from the stairs, and then clean the stairs with a damp cloth. If there are any rough spots on the stairs, use sandpaper to smooth them out.

By following these preparation steps, you’ll ensure a smooth installation process and a long-lasting result.

Choosing the Right Stair Treads

When choosing stair treads for your stairs, there are several factors to consider. The first factor is the material of the stair treads. There are many materials to choose from, including wood, laminate, vinyl, and carpet. Each material has its pros and cons, so it’s important to choose a material that fits your needs and budget.

Another factor to consider is the style of the stair treads. Stair treads come in a variety of styles, from simple and plain to ornate and decorative. Choose a style that complements the overall look of your home.

Finally, consider the safety features of the stair treads. Look for stair treads that have a non-slip surface to prevent slips and falls. You may also want to consider stair treads with a bullnose edge, which provides a smooth transition from the stair tread to the riser.

By considering these factors, you’ll be able to choose stair treads that not only look great but also provide a safe and durable surface for your stairs.

Choosing the Right Stair Treads

There are several types of stair treads available in the market, including solid wood treads, engineered wood treads, laminate treads, vinyl treads, and carpet treads. Solid wood treads are the most traditional and durable option and come in a variety of wood species, colors, and finishes. Engineered wood treads are a more affordable option that still provides the look of solid wood. Laminate treads are a budget-friendly option that comes in a variety of colors and finishes. Vinyl treads are a waterproof and slip-resistant option that’s easy to clean. Carpet treads provide additional cushioning and come in a variety of patterns and colors.

When choosing stair treads, consider factors such as durability, style, safety, and budget. In addition, it’s important to choose a stair tread that fits the size and shape of your stairs. Some stair treads can be cut to fit your stairs, while others come in pre-cut sizes.

Installing the Stair Treads

Installing stair treads over existing stairs is a simple process that can be done in just a few steps. Here’s a step-by-step guide for installing stair treads over existing stairs:

  1. Measure the width and depth of each stair tread and purchase stair treads that fit your stairs perfectly.

  2. Clean your existing stairs thoroughly before installation.

  3. Apply adhesive to the back of each stair tread using a notched trowel.

  4. Press each stair tread firmly onto the existing stairs, making sure to align each tread with the front edge of the stair.

  5. Use a utility knife to trim any excess stair tread at the back of the stair.

  6. Nail the stair treads in place using a nail set, making sure to countersink the nails.

  7. Fill any nail holes with wood filler and sand the stair treads smooth.

To ensure proper installation, it’s important to follow these tips:

  • Use the right adhesive for the type of stair tread you’re installing.
  • Make sure the stairs are clean and dry before installation.
  • Use a notched trowel to apply adhesive evenly.
  • Press the stair treads firmly onto the stairs to ensure a secure bond.
  • Use a nail set to countersink the nails and fill any nail holes with wood filler.

By following these installation tips, you’ll ensure a safe and long-lasting result. Common mistakes to avoid during installation include using the wrong adhesive, failing to clean the stairs thoroughly, and not pressing the stair treads firmly enough onto the stairs.

Finishing Touches

Once you’ve installed the stair treads, it’s time to give them a finishing touch. Start by trimming the stair treads to fit perfectly. Use a saw to trim the stair treads to the exact size of your stairs, making sure to cut them straight and even.

After trimming the stair treads, you can add finishing touches to enhance their appearance. You can stain or paint the stair treads to match the rest of your stairs or to create a contrasting look. You can also add decorative elements such as stair nosing or stair brackets to give your stairs a unique and stylish look.

Finally, clean up after installation. Use a damp cloth to wipe away any excess adhesive or debris from the stairs. Dispose of any leftover materials and tools properly.

By giving your stair treads a finishing touch, you’ll create a cohesive and beautiful look for your staircase.


Proper maintenance of stair treads is essential to ensure their longevity and safety. To keep your stair treads in good condition, you should clean them regularly. Use a vacuum or broom to remove any dirt or debris from the stair treads, and then clean them with a damp cloth or mop. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or scrubbers that can damage the surface of the stair treads.

If you notice any damage or wear on the stair treads, address it immediately. Small scratches or chips can be sanded and filled with wood filler or putty. If the damage is more significant, you may need to replace the stair tread entirely.

Common issues with stair treads include squeaking or creaking sounds, which can be caused by loose or damaged screws or nails. To fix this issue, tighten any loose screws or nails and replace any damaged ones.

By following these maintenance tips, you’ll keep your stair treads looking great and ensure the safety of your staircase.

Dayne Williamson

I'm Dayne Williamson, and I love all things technology and finance. I started Napo News Online as a way to keep people up-to-date on the latest news in those industries, and I've loved every minute of it. I'm always looking for new ways to improve my site and help my readers, and I can't wait to see what the future holds.

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