Exterior stairs: installation, errors, tips and suggestions
Although it’s not a very difficult task, exterior stairs installation should be carried out by professionals. For those that want to do it by themselves or are curious about the process, here are a few pointers. Measure the length of the step so as to know exactly how many tiles of stone you need to buy and also take into account the step’s edges for which you need a complete tile.
When the step is made from a single slab of stone (a special piece) it requires working with a pattern to make the exact contour of the step.
In order to find out the number of counter-steps, you’ll have to measure the height of the staircase, from top to bottom using a level. The number of counter-steps results from the height of the stairs divided by the width of the counter-steps. If the counter-steps are narrower, you need to pour a thicker screed that will compensate for the difference and lift the step of the stair to the level of the counter-step.
To fix the steps use a screed layer plus an adhesive or just go with the adhesive (we recommend Marmo.Plus). Exterior steps, as well as interior ones, are installed using only adhesive when we are sure that the concrete is good and even. Otherwise, the concrete’s defects can lead to the cracking of the stairs no matter how thick and durable they are.
The step is firstly hammered “cold” using a rubber hammer to check if the fit is right. If the size is right, the step is taken out, coated with adhesive and hammered back in place. Use a level to determine if the slab is perfectly horizontal. The process is repeated for every step. Start with the top step.
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How to choose the type of stone for the steps and counter-steps
Exterior stairs should match the aspect of the house’s facade, but also the hallway, so that the design continues inside and out and the space looks more friendly and whole.
The most popular types of stone for building exterior steps are brushed travertine, flamed granite, bush hammered marble and brushed slate. It all depends on your personal preferences and style. Each stone expresses something different. Travertine – warmth, closeness, granite – openness, subtle elegance, marble – imposing refinement, slate – discreet extravagance. Taking these qualities into account, you can develop different ambient concepts for planning and building exterior stairs.
The need to seal natural stone
It’s absolutely necessary to seal exterior stairs because they are exposed to weather conditions. This way, natural stone can last for many years without its aspect deteriorating.
You can find these solutions in specialized stores and they are as expensive as any other cleaning solution.
Do you need specialized installation services? Read more details about PIATRAONLINE Installation Division.
Exterior steps: tips & tricks
1. Create continuity between the color of the stairs and the colors used in the house’s entrance.
2. Use Terrazzo. There is a wide range of colors and pattern available and with a bit of imagination you can match the stairs with the building’s interior.
3. For a pleasing effect make the step thicker (3 cm) than the counter-step (2 cm).
4. Use a color intensifier for natural stones that have bush hammered and flamed finishes. These types of stone tend to lose their color over time under intense weather conditions. The intensifiers cancel this tendency.
5. Use the correct adhesive that can withstand the physical pressure and weather conditions (for instance, LTP)
6. Make sure that you manage to seal the stairs until fall comes, at least in the first year after installation
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For more suggestions about how to used natural stone call +40318.222.333, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or, better yet, visit our showroom in 137A Teisani Street, District 1, Bucharest, Romania.