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Hey everyone! I am thinking about removing the carpet from my stairs and doing wood. I know to do it properly I need to remove the current treads and risers. My home is 10 years old and looking from under the stairs I can tell they used liquid nails. My question is how hard is that to remove? I have no experience with liquid nails. I also assume the treads are nailed. Just wondering if the liquid nails "pops" off with a few hammer hits or are the treads going to break doing this and I am going to have to do a lot of cutting to remove them? Thanks for any advice you can give!
 

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Sorry to tell you, they will most likely be a bear to get off. Be mindful of keeping the stringers intact. Don't go whaling away on them with a hammer.
Cut the centers out with a Sawzall then attack what's glued down.
 

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Sorry to tell you, they will most likely be a bear to get off. Be mindful of keeping the stringers intact. Don't go whaling away on them with a hammer.
Cut the centers out with a Sawzall then attack what's glued down.
Hey thanks....I was afraid that was going to be the answer. :(. The stairs were built very well. no squeaks. Wondering if I should just do 3/4 Oak treads (vs. new 1 inch treads) over top of the existing treads. I would assume pad and carpet are in the 3/4 range so there shouldn't be too much of a height difference.
 

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Well, remove one tread and/or riser, which may be a good task. Once one or a set is removed, the adjacent ones may be easier to access and remove.

Sonny
 

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Well, remove one tread and/or riser, which may be a good task. Once one or a set is removed, the adjacent ones may be easier to access and remove.

Sonny
That's a good idea. If perhaps the first couple aren't terrible I can just role with it.
 

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if they don't squeak. leave them alone. Find some other project.
 

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Buy two new boards, cut your tread pattern into them and start with all new stringers.

The cost of the new stringers will be far less than the effort required to save the old ones.

Don't spend an entire Saturday saving a pair of 2X12's.
 

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You have to cover the riser. Mostly are done with pine, but you could have other

I've just taken them off with a crow bar and a hammer
 

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I owned an old Usonian style house from 2000 to 2019. It was all concrete...concrete / spancrete floors & ceilings, block walls and poured concrete stairs. There wasn't a piece of wood trim in the house when I moved in and I eventually installed 6" & 4" oak trim throughout the entire house before I sold it a few years ago. I'm sure I used over 100 tubes of liquid nails over the years to hold all that trim down. I think there's even a tube of liquid nails on the floor in the picture below when my son, nephew and I finished trimming the sun room.

I had to redo a few rooms during a kitchen and bathroom remodel in 2017. When I pulled up the oak trim I found that the liquid nail released the oak trim that was connected directly to concrete/plaster walls pretty easily. Any boards that were connected with liquid nails that were face board to face board were difficult to separate but generally they came out fairly clean. Any boards that were connected face board to end grain were very difficult to get apart and a lot of the end grain would be pulled out.

For the boards where the liquid nails stuck to the face board I would generally be able to chip off the dried liquid nails with a wide chisel and then with a little sanding the board was able to be reused. All the boards that had liquid nails dried on the end grain were in very rough shape after I got them apart.


IMG_7986.jpeg
 

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Hey everyone! I am thinking about removing the carpet from my stairs and doing wood. I know to do it properly I need to remove the current treads and risers. My home is 10 years old and looking from under the stairs I can tell they used liquid nails. My question is how hard is that to remove? I have no experience with liquid nails. I also assume the treads are nailed. Just wondering if the liquid nails "pops" off with a few hammer hits or are the treads going to break doing this and I am going to have to do a lot of cutting to remove them? Thanks for any advice you can give!
I will make a deal with you. I have 1,200 sg. ft. of engineered hardwood glued down to concrete I need removed. I will remove your treads and risers if you do my floors! 😁
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I owned an old Usonian style house from 2000 to 2019. It was all concrete...concrete / spancrete floors & ceilings, block walls and poured concrete stairs. There wasn't a piece of wood trim in the house when I moved in and I eventually installed 6" & 4" oak trim throughout the entire house before I sold it a few years ago. I'm sure I used over 100 tubes of liquid nails over the years to hold all that trim down. I think there's even a tube of liquid nails on the floor in the picture below when my son, nephew and I finished trimming the sun room.

I had to redo a few rooms during a kitchen and bathroom remodel in 2017. When I pulled up the oak trim I found that the liquid nail released the oak trim that was connected directly to concrete/plaster walls pretty easily. Any boards that were connected with liquid nails that were face board to face board were difficult to separate but generally they came out fairly clean. Any boards that were connected face board to end grain were very difficult to get apart and a lot of the end grain would be pulled out.

For the boards where the liquid nails stuck to the face board I would generally be able to chip off the dried liquid nails with a wide chisel and then with a little sanding the board was able to be reused. All the boards that had liquid nails dried on the end grain were in very rough shape after I got them apart.


View attachment 422612
I like the info about the end grain! My stringers are fiber board beams with a 2x6 nailed to the side of all three. The Liguid N is only on the fiber board. I would assume the liquid nails like this stuff since its not smooth like the face of a board.
 

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You shouldn't have trouble removing stair treads. Nails hold them and the liquid nail is there to keep them locked in place and stop them from squeaking...

Many, but not all will put additional nails through the riser into the tread itself to help with flex...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
You shouldn't have trouble removing stair treads. Nails hold them and the liquid nail is there to keep them locked in place and stop them from squeaking...

Many, but not all will put additional nails through the riser into the tread itself to help with flex...
Well that's encouraging news!!! So the Liquid Nails is essentially just a squeak proof spacer. I am not seeing any nails through the risers so that's good.
 

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maybe i missed. depends on the stringers. some are cut like a sawtooth, and the risers and treads are merely attached on top of the stringer cut outs. there is another style where the stringer has routed out grooves, that the tread slides into and shimmed, then same with the tread. this would be a much more difficult style to replace. you can always replace the stringers too...
 

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maybe i missed. depends on the stringers. some are cut like a sawtooth, and the risers and treads are merely attached on top of the stringer cut outs. there is another style where the stringer has routed out grooves, that the tread slides into and shimmed, then same with the tread. this would be a much more difficult style to replace. you can always replace the stringers too...
Ah! Yeah the treads are just attached to the top of the stringers. I think this approach is pretty typical in new construction. At least all the homes I have been through are like this. My home is 10 years old. Guessing they do it like this because it's cheaper and faster. I really feel like ours are good solid stairs. I know, "why the heck are you screwing with it!". The main reason is the carpet is shot but the carpet in the basement is fine plus I just restored a 110 year old pool table and it's sitting on that very carpet! The other reason for doing the stairs in wood is because our main level has quarter-sawn oak floors and we think it would look pretty sharp to do the stairs in the same wood. The last reason is that we got a quote from the flooring company of 7k to have them do it. I can't ever see spending that much. I know if they did it it would be flawless but....7k? Can't do it.
 

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I understand completely.

I had a builder that always used high end carpet on tge stairs and it was different from the halls and rest of the house. He said is was the first thing that wore out, and he wanted it up graded with something that could easily changed without trying to match other carpets.

I just told my daughter tge same thing on the housd she's building.

I have the same problem. My boy likes to wear his oliy shoes in through the garage andd up my stairs after working on cars. I have hardwoods up stairs but carpet between the rec room and the upstairs.

I told the wife I was going to pull the carpet and leave them bare , she said it won't look tight, I till her neither does the oil spots..
 

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do you have access to the under side of the steps? i know that i like to screw the back of the riser into back edge of the tread for added strength, when i do have access.
 
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