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How To Install Baseboard On Stairs

Here is a guide on how to install baseboard on stairs.

If you decide to do this type of baseboard installation there are a few things to consider. One is; if there is a space between the wall and the stair treads and risers. If the stair treads and risers of the stairs run directly up to the walls with no space, this may be an ideal situation for this type of application.

If there is a space between the stairs and wall they do make a piece of molding for this and it is called skirt boards. Click on this link skirt boards to find out exactly what it is. If you decide on base board instead of skirt boards then follow along carefully and I will guide you through on how to install baseboard on stairs.

Let's Get Started

Lets assume you have all the tools and materials for this job. First to clarify we will be doing the right side of the stairway as you are looking up the stairway.

  • First take a piece of baseboard and square cut the end and then measure about 12" and square cut again you should have a piece of baseboard 1 ft long.

  • Set this piece against the over hang on the first step down being sure it is level vertically and tight against the over hang. A notch will be cut for the over hang to fit into so mark the over hang from the step above on this piece.

  • Mark the top of the over hang and the bottom on this piece and be precise with a sharp pencil because as stated you will be cutting a notch for the over hang to fit into so the base is tight against the riser.

  • Using a speed square extend these marks up the base nice and straight with some very light pencil marks.

  • Turn the base horizontal and stick it under the over hang against the riser and connect these two straight lines. This will be the notch that will be cut out for the over hang to fit into.

  • Use either a table saw or a miter saw and carefully cut this notch out being careful not to go past the pencil marks. After you have the notch cut out trial fit it to make sure it is a nice fit and tight against the riser, adjust as needed.

  • Next at the miter saw set this piece of base flat on the saw with the top of the base out towards you and the thicker part or bottom of the base towards the fence of the saw. You should have the notch to the right side of you.

  • Set the degrees of the saw from 0 to 45 degrees moving it also to the right. Make the cut so the 45 degree angle starts exactly at the right side of the notch.

  • Now slide this piece over and make a 45 degree cut on the other side of this piece starting exactly at the corner.

  • Now take another piece of base and cut the appropriate angle at 45 degrees for this piece to fit into the bottom of the previous piece. You may need to adjust the angle of 45 degrees slightly to get good miters but essentially that's it.

  • Just keep repeating this procedure on every step until you are finished. These instructions are assuming you have some sort of finished wood, vinyl or tile or hard floor surface.

    More Things To Consider For This Application

    If there would be carpeting installed later on these steps you would have to take that into account. You would have to leave a space under the base for the carpet to be tucked into. That just means doing exactly what the instructions say except sliding a piece of base under the base you are installing to give you that space needed. You would have to have this space at the stair treads and risers and also this would change the depth of your notch.

    Chances are there is not going to be anything for your nails to hit behind the wall so nail the pieces that you can or know where they will be hitting studs. A good construction adhesive will have to be used to attach the other pieces that can't be nailed. Apply the adhesive then use some sort of bracing to hold these pieces tight against the wall while the glue dries maybe bracing against the opposite side of the stairway.
  • Be sure to apply carpenters glue to each of the mitered joints.

    Final Notes On How To Install Baseboard On Stairs

    These instructions of how to install baseboard on stairs should be used only as a guide. There are so many variables and different situations that can come into play with this type of application. Some different methods may need to be used to cut the notch out for the tread over hang depending on the type of floor covering.

    The use of a dremel tool may be useful in shaping the notches for the over hang, again depending on the floor coverings. Doing this type of application is by no means hard it just takes some patience and time so take your time to get nice tight miters and tight fits throughout.

    Sometimes this type of base boarding does take a little creativity so don't be afraid to try different things that may help in any way. At the time of this writing I am currently writing another eBook which will be instructions for installing skirt boards and will explain exactly how to install skirt boards perfect every time with little room for mistakes. Again any questions e-mail me through the contact button at finishcarpentryhelp.com.

    Information about Skirt Boards
    Desciption of Skirt Boards

    Installing A Wood Handrail
    How to install a wood handrail.

    Building Stair Hand Railings?
    Ebook Preview of Building Stair Hand Railings

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