When talking with customers regarding stairs and railings, it is helpful if we all use the same terminology. There are many types of stairs that we can build or add railings to. The following list describes some of the more popular stair types:
Straight Stair : Straight stairs are certainly one of the most common types of stairs found in both residential and commercial properties.
L Shaped Stair : The L shaped stair is a variation of the straight stair with a bend in some portion of the stair. This bend is usually achieved by adding a landing at the bend transition point. The bend is often 90 degrees, however it does not have to be. If the landing is closer to the top or bottom of the stairs it is sometimes referred to as a long L stair.
U shaped Stairs/half turn stairs: U Shaped stairs are basically 2 parallel flights of straight stairs joined by by a landing that requires 180 degree turn in the walk line. If a third flight is inserted into the middle of the stairs, it would become a double L stair (or quarter landing).
Winder stairs are a variation of an L shaped stair but instead of a flat landing, they have pie shaped or triangular steps at the corner transition.
Spiral stairs are a often confused with curved stairs. Although, both types of stairs follow a helical arc (like the shape of a spring), spiral stairs usually are made very compact and the treads radiate around a center pole.
Curved stairs add elegance to home or business. For this reason they are almost always located at the entry where it makes the best first impression. Curved stairs, like spiral stairs are helical however, they tend to be on a much larger radius and typically do not make a full circle.
Since the definition of a stair is a series of steps leading from one floor to another, we would be remiss if we did not include ladders. Library ladders or loft ladders are becoming more popular to conserve space in smaller, sustainable designs.