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How do I update basement stairs walls and bulkhead

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Mar 31, 2013, 10:49 AM
How do I update basement stairs walls and bulkhead
My husband and I bought our current house knowing it was going to be a fixer-upper. We've had our kitchen remodeled and texture removed from our downstairs basement bedrooms. We are at a loss for how to fix our basement stairs walls and bulkhead. The wood is uneven on the walls, plus it curves. The bulkhead is the underlay to the upstairs stairs. Please help! It is such an eye sore that makes me want to cry every time I see it.

Mar 31, 2013, 11:17 AM
Sometimes you just have to start over.

While it may seem like the wrong approach, trying to just 'fix' a lot of minor problems in the same area can be a lot harder (and a lot more time-consuming and a lot more expensive) then just ripping everything out and starting all over again. i think this may be the case with your stairs. Instead of trying to figure out how to make the walls right or how to make the treads look better you may be better off to just plan on taking everything out and then rebuilding the stairway and stairwell. As both the walls and stairs require a substructure for support, if that basic framework is not correct then no amount of cosmetic work on top of it will ever look right.

Look at the project from the eyes of what space is there if it were all gone, then rebuild it into what you need and want.

Apr 01, 2013, 05:17 AM
I agree. I'm not seeing anything about those stairs that makes since or is even close to being to code. That's just an accident waiting to happen.

Apr 01, 2013, 05:02 PM
I've seen stairs like that before. an afterthought, cobbled to fit the existing hole because somebody goofed. probably a head-banger as you climb down that mountain, too.

and without handrails, which would practically be straight up and down.

you are going to need at least twice the lateral space for legal stairs, and will either have to push the upper landing back or hack an angle into that headcracker of a wall on the right side a third of the way down.

this could be DIY'ed, but there are so many deficiencies here that I would get bids to redo this. I smell permit required, and there are bound to be a bunch of hidden problems if what you see is that flagrantly illegal.

sig: if this is a new economy, how come they still want my old-fashioned money?