When are solid risers required on stairs?

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Solid risers are required on all residential stairs by the International Residential Code (IRC 1011.5.5.3) and the Residential Edition of the Florida Building Code (FBC), with two exceptions: 

1) Solid risers are not required between treads if "the opening between treads does not permit the passage of a sphere with a diameter of 4 inches."

2) Spiral stairs, if constructed in compliance with the other requirements of the code, are not required to have solid risers.

    Yes, we know you have seen stairs like the one shown above in design magazines, with open risers, no railing, and no hand grip. But they are not code-compliant or safe.

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Here’s links to a collection of our other blog posts about STAIRS:

What do home inspectors check when inspecting stairs?

Is a landing always required at the top and bottom of stairs? 

When is a railing required at stairs?

What is the building code for the minimum height of stair steps (risers)? 

When is a nosing required on a stair tread?

What is the building code requirement for receptacle outlets at stairs and stair landings?  

Are open stair risers acceptable?

What is the steepest residential stair allowed?

Why is a single step dangerous in a house?

 Do I need stairs at all exit doors from a mobile home? 

The stairs feel too steep. What's the building code? 

• What is the longest stair run allowed? 

• What is the lighting requirement for stairs?

• A light is required over a stair after how many steps/risers? 

• When is safety glass required for windows at stairs and stair landings?

   Visit our STAIRS page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles.

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