Painting Staircase

5 Nov 2005
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United Kingdom
Having taken the carpet off my stairs, I am left with a bare wood "runner" up the middle and some paint on each side. My plan is to sand down and paint the risers in white and the treads in black.

Any recommendations on what type or brand of paint to go for? Was just going to do a standard gloss undercoat and satinwood on the risers, but unsure about the treads - obviously should be something that is grippy..

many thanks
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You dont need to undercoat satinwood its self undercoating.
Your risers wont be too much of a problem but the treads will be, which is why you never see it done. You can forget about any oil based coatings as you wont be able to walk on it for days.
Also black is the worst colour for showing particles of dust making the finish look pretty crap no matter how hard you try to prevent dust.
Standard finishing coatings are not designed to take the amount of wear and tear that would occur on a stair tread the only thing you can do is go over the gloss/satin with a clear varnish, but in my opinion the whole idea is a non starter.

If you can get the paint off the treads it would look really nice if you applied a stain or varnish to them with the risers painted in white, i'd suggest something from the osmo range for the treads.
I have used satinwood on stairs for a family I work for and as said, it takes days to dry but last better than I expected. Like you I did the black/white thing. 3 teenage kids, a dog and 2 parents did their worst and it would last 4-5 years before needing to be repainted !
However, I used Ronseal diamond floor paint last time and it seems to be lasting even better and doesn't take so long to dry out. I did prep it all well, which seems to be the key (ha ha) to a good result and primed and then painted 3 coats - 4 years on and it is looking far from needing to be redone - shame, as I could do with the work !
How do you cope with taking "ages and ages to dry" when you can't avoid using stairs? Do you paint every other stair and then come back later to do the rest?
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I was working alone in the house which was empty for the summer every year so would paint my way out on a friday then return on Monday and work in other parts of the house.
I realize this is not a usual situation though !!
After 24-36 hours the paint would be dry enough to walk on if very careful (and I am talking about pre 2010 paints here) so one could get up to grout the bathroom tiles or whatever

I would also add a little driers to the paint and always left the work complete at least a week before the owners returned for the paint to harden fully.
Easy way is to paint every alternate tread first, then when they are dry do the others .. Simples !!
Am investigating some kind of stair "topper" now that looks like wood or that I can paint/stain before installing....
This is once my problem and after stumbling in here, I have got into a conclusion on how to do it on my stair.
I would advise using Ronseal also, I used this type of paint specifically when I completed my stairs a couple of years ago... Now it is still in top shape, ronseal is probably one of the most resistant on the market.

You will however have to prepare the staircase well for a good result, sand down well, and also use at least 3 coats I would recommend 4.

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