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sisyphus 02-02-2013 02:25 PM

cinder block steps
Hello all, I'd like to build a landing and steps using cinder block. I would only need to build two levels of steps to reach the doorway. do the blocks need to be seured to the house and what type of landing can I install? thanks

oldognewtrick 02-02-2013 03:05 PM

Do you have a concrete pad to build the steps on? Or were you thinking of putting them on bare earth or compacted gravel?

Wuzzat? 02-02-2013 03:15 PM

There are formulas that seem to work for the optimum riser:tread ratio vs. rise:run ratio of the staircase, so people don't trip. Cinder blocks may give you a too-high riser:tread ratio.

poppa 02-02-2013 05:40 PM

Cinder blocks do tend to be a little high for riser height. If you have access to a masonry saw you could cut them. Ideally step rise should not exceed 6.5" but many old steps were built with 7.5" cinder blocks and worked just fine. Need good foundation tho.

AndyGump 02-02-2013 08:00 PM

You could try and push those blocks all the way up but you would just be doomed to watch them roll down the steps and away from you again.


BridgeMan 02-02-2013 09:45 PM

I suspect what you're really hoping to use are concrete blocks, instead of cinder blocks. The former are what's generally available today, while the latter haven't been made for many decades.

And both would be ugly for a stairway leading up to a door. Unless you face them with some nice, fancy stone or even fake stone. And pour a concrete slab above them (and below the door). If you like ugly, just use railroad ties--a bit less expensive, and far easier to install. Spiked in with No. 5 rebar is all it takes.

kok328 02-03-2013 07:32 AM

Check around to see if you can find pre-cast concrete steps. A deep base with a shallow step placed on top of that. This will provide you with the correct rise/run for the steps.

nealtw 02-03-2013 08:49 PM

Poppa; welcome to the site. Max steps are 8" high and the most important part is that all steps are the same height or within 1/4" of each other.

mudmixer 02-03-2013 09:24 PM

Not all concrete block are 7-5/8" high. I lived in area where 8" nominally thick (actually 7-5/8" thick) block were available in 3-5/8", 5", 5-5/8" 7-5/8" and 8" heights.

It varies with the quality and of local suppliers and there many other 7-5/8" thick solid units made in 1'-5/8", 2-5/8", 3-5/8", 5-5/8", 7-5/8", 9-5/8" heights.

All it takes is a few questions to a good supplier.


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