News — stair remodel

Best Practices for Storing Your Stair Parts

So you've decided to begin a stair remodel or new staircase project, and the first step is figuring out exactly what you need to get started for your new stair design. After you've figured this part out, it's time to place your stair parts order. Once your order arrives, it probably contains stair railings, iron balusters, and maybe even some newel posts. But what's your next step after they arrive?

It's time to store them until you're able to begin your stair remodel or project.

  1. You always want to store your wooden stair parts, like your wood stairs or wood balusters, in a place that's free of moisture. Moisture isn't good for wooden parts, and it should be avoided at all costs. The wood itself can be damaged by coming in contact with moisture whether it's on the concrete floors in your basement or near the ventilation on your AC Unit.
  2. Never store your stair parts in a dusty or dirty place. Not only can the dirt damage the finishes on your new stair parts, but it can create an unnecessary cleaning task for you before you begin you stair remodel or project. We recommend that you keep your stair parts in their shipping boxes in a moisture-free closet.
  3. Whether you purchased cheap stair parts or stair parts that are top of the line, it's important that you keep them out of direct sunlight. Additionally, if the storage area for your stair parts is too warm, it can also damage the wood by causing it to dry out and crack. Our recommended storage temperature is around 70 degrees.

If you have any questions about storing your stair parts order, please reach out to us on our Contact page.

Modern Staircase Design Tips

Modern staircases are becoming more popular in the interior design world, forcing homebuilders and remodelers alike to pay attention to the trends. Staircase design is one of the most challenging parts of an architect's job when designing a new home, and with all of the advances in staircase architecture, it's only getting more complicated. 

So if you're about to embark on a stair remodel or project, here are a few helpful tips to know about modern staircase design.

**Remember, staircase design must abide by your region's building code. Certain dimensions are required in many areas, as well as certain elements like guardrails.

1. The materials you choose will play a big role in creating the perfect modern staircase.

Whether you decide to incorporate glass or wide oak treads, your the options are endless for your modern stair remodel. Just be sure to keep in mind that glass treads, although beautiful, become very slippery with only a drop of water. Plus, there's a privacy issue because they're see through.

2. Incorporate modern design elements.

Thin iron balusters, wide treads, and "open" staircases are all very on trend in the modern staircase world. Finding stair parts can be more difficult for this type of stair remodel, so be sure to check out our online store for everything you need.

3. Make your staircase a design focal point in your home.

Your staircase is one of the most high traffic areas in your home, so why not make it a stunning, modern centerpiece? If you're building a new home, you have more control over the location of your new staircase, but if you're embarking on a stair remodel, you might have to work a little harder to make this happen.

If you want to try out a staircase design before making your purchase, be sure and check out our Stair Design Tool. Keep in mind that you can find all of the stair parts you need on our website. From your friends at Direct Stair Parts, good luck with your modern staircase design project!

What You Need to Consider for Your Wooden Staircase

One of the most difficult parts of a stair remodel is deciding what kind of wooden stair parts you should use to complete your project. There are many factors that make each type of wood different, and your options can easily overwhelm you. Hopefully we can help you avoid some of the stress and anxiety that comes with any stair remodel or project by explaining the basics of selecting the best wood for you.

The most important thing that you’ll need to consider is what you intend to do with the wood stair parts that you’ll purchase, and this decision will usually depend on what you want your finished staircase to look like.


The are many options and themes that you can consider, however, they will all be limited by the type/grade of wood that you select for your project. When making your selection, you will want to focus on four particular grade factors: carpet grade, paint grade, stain grade, and finish grade.

Carpet grade woods usually vary drastically in color and can contain voids and knots. They are the most cost effective, but usually lack aesthetic appeal. This particular grade is referred to as “carpet grade” because it is usually covered with carpet because of its poor quality.

Paint grade woods are similar to carpet grade woods in that they too can vary in color. However, they usually contain less knotting and pitting. This wood also lacks quality and aesthetic appeal and is typically covered with a paint finish, which is why it is referred to as “paint grade."

The final two grades are very high quality. Stain grade woods, for example, contain a uniform grain and have fewer knots. These woods are great for staining, and they are considered the minimum for a finished staircase.

The best grades are called finish grades and include hardwoods like oak, cherry, or maple. These woods can also be stained, and they contain the fewest flaws when compared to the other grades.

If you can come up with a firm idea of what you want your finished project to look like, you’ll be well on your way to finding the best woods and finishes for your stair remodel.

If you’re looking for ideas for additional stair parts, feel free to visit our website to get your creative juices flowing. We have detailed diagrams and instructions for any aspect of your stair remodel, and we will be happy to answer any questions that you may have. We wish you the best of luck!

Creative Ideas for Stair Railings That Will Help With Your Next Stair Remodel

A staircase has the potential to be the centerpiece of any home, and having the right design can serve as the key focal point for any project. However, the idea of a stair remodel is often overlooked, despite the impact that it can have on a home improvement project. Some homeowners avoid such projects because they are worried that they’ll be taking on a gargantuan task that requires huge amounts of materials and energy. However, many would be surprised at how a little creative thinking can go a long way in helping you to come up with an ingenious design for a staircase.

Let’s think about stair railings for example. You could try using unusual materials or replacing typical stair parts with something different by repurposing a few things.

Here are a few ideas for stair railings and odd items that might help to get those creative juices flowing.

Have you ever considered repurposing a rowing paddle? A rowing paddle staircase railing can be one of the best creative stair parts to include in a stair remodel for a lake house or a beachfront property. It already has the shape and size that most staircases need, so you can it be repurposed easily.

You could also bring a bit of nature inside your home by using a branch to replace your current stair railings. All you need is the right branch for the project. If you’re partial to the idea of using an actual branch, you can try having a custom branch-like rail made while only using the shape as inspiration.

If you have an outdoor staircase, vines can be a great idea for a handrail. Free form vines are great for this type of project and can often be found in the woods or at a local garden nursery. This design is also great because it can be easily integrated into an existing garden.

If you’re looking for stair railings that have an industrial flare, you can try using metal piping or unstained wood. These types of stair parts look great on wood stairs, and are easy to install.  

Hopefully, some of these ideas will help to jumpstart the creative process for your next home improvement project.

However, keep in mind that a distinctive staircase handrail doesn’t need to be made of an unusual or repurposed material. These are just a few creative ways to change an ordinary staircase into a breathtaking focal point during your next stair remodel.

Iron Balusters or Wood Balusters

So which one is better, wood or iron balusters?

One of the first questions you have to answer once you've embarked on your stair remodel or project is whether you'll go with wood or iron balusters. Each design has a totally different feel, and there are pros and cons to each. Custom stair parts have become so popular in the stair design world that this decision is becoming harder and harder, so we're going to compare wood and iron balusters to help you make a more informed decision.



Customization: Iron can be molded into a variety of different shapes, while wood is more limited. Yes, you can have wood balusters carved to fit your needs, but the variety of iron balusters already out there for you to choose from is much higher. Plus iron is much stronger than wood, so iron balusters can be molded into thinner shapes than wood.


Usage: Outdoors, it is certainly better to use iron balusters in place of wood because they can withstand the elements much better. Although you have the option to use wood balusters indoors, iron can still handle heavier usage than wood. Wood has the tendency to wear out quicker and lose its shine in as little as six months.


Durability: Iron is a much stronger material than wood, making it a more durable product. Wood is susceptible to termites, cracking, warping, and more, which means they'll need to be replaced more frequently. 


So if you're deciding between wood or iron balusters, keep in mind that either one would be a great choice from a design perspective. One thing to keep in mind? Iron balusters are more customizable and can withstand heavier usage. But for whatever you decide, we've got both wood balusters and iron balusters available in our online catalog.




Utilizing Your Staircase for Fitness in 2015

It's 2015, and most of us have already grown tired of our new year's fitness resolutions. Whether you have to wake up early or go after working, getting to the gym isn't easy. But what if someone told you that you didn't have to get to the gym every day to live a healthier lifestyle? What if you could use a unique part of your home to get a thorough workout?


It's time to begin utilizing your staircase to reach your fitness goals this year.

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There's no need to go to the gym and use the stair stepping machine when you have a staircase of your own. You can either set aside 20 minutes to do each of these workouts three times each, or you can sprinkle them throughout your day. Whatever you decide to do, make it fit into your life so that you can stick to it.

Here are four staircase workouts for you to try:
  1. Hop Ups: This leg workout is also good for your quads and calves. Hold your arms bent at your side with your feet shoulder width apart facing the staircase. Hop up to the first stair, both feet at the same time, then back down again. Your toes should be in line with your knees. Hop up and down ten times in a row then take a moment to breathe and repeat.
  2. Step Ups and Downs: Face the staircase, then step up on the first stair with your right foot. Follow with your left foot. Then return with back down in the same order, right foot down then left. Do this for one minute and then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat three times.
  3. Backward Climb: Face the opposite direction of your staircase, and walk up your staircase backwards. Be aware of the space between each step and maintaining your balance. Take each step one at a time until you reach the top, then return down the stairs while facing forward and repeat.
  4. Skip a Step: Climb your staircase using your arms to propel you forward. Skip a one stair with every step. Once you've mastered this, you can begin skipping two steps at a time. By elongating your stride, you're increasing the work load for your legs and getting a cardio workout. 


Each of these exercises requires you to pay attention to every step to avoid missing a step or falling. Please use caution when utilizing your staircase for your fitness needs. If you're looking for a place to start with your next stair remodel or project, visit our homepage.