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Spiral Staircases

A spiral staircase can be a great feature in your home. Most homeowners consider a spiral staircase a functional necessity to connect two floors, but integrated in the overall design, it can add to the attractiveness of the space as well as be a discrete but useful feature. Here are some tips for picking a spiral staircase for your home:

  • Consider its location. Try to ensure that the access to the stair matches its expected use. For frequent use, the flow to and from the stairs should be easy. On the other hand, for less frequent use, a less accessible location, such in a large closet area or back hall may be acceptable. In all cases, proper structural support is necessary to bear the weight of the stairs, which tend to be concentrated where the center column rests, so make sure the location you choose can bear the weight of the staircase and users.
  • You can choose the diameter of the stairs. Typical diameters start at 4 feet (fairly narrow) with common sizes being 5, 6 and 7 feet . Of course, the space available is the first criteria; also consider tread (the spot you put your foot) size (keeping in mind that the tread narrows at it approaches the center) and what, if anything, you will want to carry up the staircase. Youmay find it a good idea to visit a showroom and actually go up and down a spiral staircase before settling on a diameter.
  • Although custom-made staircases are available, a quicker solution that can also save money is the staircase kit. These come in standard sizes and are offered in various materials, such as metal or wood. Kit manufacturers can help you determine the appropriate configuration for the top landing, the rotation of the stairs (turning right or left as you go up), the riser (height of each step) and the number of steps necessary.

When choosing the staircase material, consider things like style, finish, comfort and price. Also keep in mind that metal staircases tend to be noisier than wood ones.

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