Carly McPherson
Carly McPherson
  • Hometalker
  • Richmond, VA

Stairs From Carpet to Wood

11 Materials
$100
4 Days
Medium

My husband and I recently tore the carpet from our stairs and painted the wood underneath creating a fresh, clean, and modern look! We did this project over a full weekend and two additional weeks nights following.
Stairs Before
Stairs Before
This is our stairs before. The carpet was old and dirty giving the entry a very dark and dated feel. Our main goal was to rip off the carpet, see what wood was underneath, and create a brighter, more modern entry.
Pulling carpet up from stairs
Pulling carpet up from stairs
To see what was under the carpet, we began to tear at a corner piece, using pliers for assistance. You can also see here a gap between the treads and the risers. This gap was too big for caulk, so we decided we will have to buy trim pieces to cover this.
Wood under carpet
Wood under carpet
We were pleased to find that we had pine wood under our carpet in great shape! The rest of the carpet easily pulled off in two long strips.
Removing staples and nails from wood
Removing staples and nails from wood
The longest and most tedious part of this project was removing all of the nails and staples from the wood. This alone took about 1/2 day.
Stairs after staples and nails removed
Stairs after staples and nails removed
We initially wanted to stain the top of the wood and paint the risers white. However, the pine wood was so soft that removing the nails and staples left many big holes and indents in the wood. We filled these holes in with wood putty and rushed to Home Depot to get floor paint instead.
Priming the stairs
Priming the stairs
After the wood putty dried, we sanded down the wood. Then we primed the entire staircase using a quart of Kilz primer.
Painting the stairs
Painting the stairs
We painted the risers first in a white semi gloss stain resistant paint. After 3 coats of the white, we taped off the sides and painted the treads using a floor paint in dark brown. This took 3 coats.
stairs from carpet to wood
After the final coat dried, we applied a coat of semi gloss polyurethane to the treads and applied the trim pieces to the back using wood glue for a finished look.
Stairs After
Stairs After
Voila! Our entry is much brighter and modern now with the old carpet gone! We also replaced the light fixture in the foyer to compliment our new stairs look.
stairs from carpet to wood
stairs from carpet to wood
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Have a question about this project?

3 of 13 questions
  • GinnyD
    on Dec 17, 2018

    I'm putting my question out to everyone. I have carpeting at the top of my stairs as well but don't want to rip that up. Does anyone know how to butt up the end of the landing with the top wood riser?

    • SM
      on Dec 17, 2018

      I would think you would have to keep the carpet rolled over the top of the landing. So that it meets the top of the riser on your top step.

  • Donna
    on Dec 17, 2018

    BEAUTFUL!!!! Would you like to do mine?

  • Ddo28307559
    on Dec 18, 2018

    When you tear all the carpet off and get the nails out full the holes in paint it what can you put down on the Step not to slip

Join the conversation

2 of 51 comments
  • JoAnn
    on Dec 17, 2018

    Wow what a transformation!! Amazing!!

  • Nadine
    on Dec 17, 2018

    Although I do not have risers, I do not want to close that "area" of the steps up. I like "see thru" steps. But I do like what you have done. I will try it, minus the risers. Thanks so much for the idea.

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