Components of staircase – Importance and functions

The components of the staircase must fulfil specific functional requirements. The main components of the staircase include Stringers, Treads, Risers, flights, Winders, Landing, Handrails Balusters etc. A staircase is one of the most important structural elements of a building. The primary function of a staircase is to facilitate movement from one floor to another. Staircases can be straight or curved and made of reinforced concrete, steel, wood, stones, and other materials. Staircases enhance the aesthetic appearance of the building in addition to providing access between floors.

It is necessary to understand the various components of the staircase as well as its functions when detailing it. This article discusses the components of a staircase and their functions.

  1. Components of Staircase
    1. Tread – Horizontal Components of the staircase step
    2. Rise – Vertical components of the staircase step
    3. Step – Combination of vertical and horizontal components of the staircase
    4. Curtail step
    5. Nosing
    6. Flight
    7. Landing – Crucial components of the staircase
    8. Going
    9. Winders
    10. Railing
    11. Baluster
    12. Run
    13. Soffit
    14. Stringer
    15. Waist

Components of Staircase

The staircase is made of several components and each component is associated with specific functional requirements. Following are the components of a staircase.

  • Tread
  • Rise
  • Steps
  • Curtail step
  • Nosing
  • Flight
  • Landing
  • Going
  • Winders
  • Railing
  • Baluster
  • Run
  • Soffit
  • Stringer
  • Waist
Components of Staircase
Components of Staircase

Tread – Horizontal Components of the staircase step

A tread is a major horizontal component of the staircase where we put our feet. The depth of tread is the distance between the staircase’s inner and outer edges. The tread width is the distance along the width of the steps. Generally, the tread of the staircase should be 270 mm in residential buildings and 300 mm in public buildings.

Rise – Vertical components of the staircase step

A rise in a staircase is the vertical component of the staircase step. It serves as a support for the treads. The vertical distance between successive treads is referred to as the rise. Generally, the riser should be 150 mm for public buildings and 190 mm for residential buildings.

Step – Combination of vertical and horizontal components of the staircase

Steps are the combination of treads and risers. Similarly, a pair of risers and tread makes a step. Basically, it is the functional unit of a staircase. 

Curtail step

The curtail step is the first step in the staircase. The width of the curtail step can be more than the normal steps. The curtail step is another major components of the staircase which acts as a base for the staircase. 

Nosing

The edge of a stair tread that projects out horizontally is known as the nosing. In general, nosing has a rounded edge. However, the length of the nosing should not exceed 1.5″. Basically, nosing enhances the appearance of the staircase. The line of nosing is the imaginary line that connects the nosing. This line runs parallel to the stairwell’s incline.

Flight

Flight is a component of the staircase that consists of a series of steps. Basically, it is the total steps between the two landings. Generally, flights consist of 8 to 10 steps. 

Landing – Crucial components of the staircase

Landing is the horizontal space between two flights. It acts as a space to change the direction of the staircase. Generally, the minimum height of the landing should be 7 feet. The width of a landing is the distance between one end to the other end, which is normally equal to the width of the step. 

Landing
Landing

Going

Going is the distance measured from the nosing of successive treads. It is the horizontal distance between the consecutive risers. 

Winders

Winders are tapering steps. That is one end of the step is narrower than the other. Likewise, It is a type of step which helps in changing the direction of the staircase. Basically, it acts as a landing. However, Spiral staircases consist of a series of winders. 

Compounds of staircase - Winder stair
Winder stair

Railing

The railing is a components of staircase which is used for holding hands. Generally, it is inclined and parallel to the slope of the staircase. Similarly, they act as protective bars. Generally, they are made using timber. 

Baluster

The baluster is the vertical component of the handrail. Basically, balusters act as a support for the railing. 

Run

The total length of the series of flights including the length of landing is the run of a staircase

Soffit

The bottom part of the staircase component is the soffit. Basically, this place is suitable as a storage area.

Stringer

The components in the staircase which support the risers and treads are the stringer. There are two types of stringers,

  • Cut or type stringers
  • Closed or Housed type stringers

They are parallel to the slope of the staircase.

Waist

The staircase is rest on a thick RCC slab. This RCC slab is known as the waist slab. It is perpendicular to the soffit of the staircase. 

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