Replacing your stair banister can be simple if you understand each part, its function and how they all fit together. Replace a stair banister when it's damaged or worn for safety reasons. Update a banister when the old one goes out of style or is in need of an update.
- Skill level:
Choose the type of banister you would like. Changing from wrought iron to wood or vice versa can give your house a nice new look.
Measure the size of the existing banister. This will let you know how large the new piece should be. You will probably have to cut it to fit, so buying a little extra is OK.
Check each spindle for wear and tear. If the spindles are worn or broken, these should be replaced along with your banister.
Cut your banister to the appropriate length and at the right angle to the top of the stairs. Mark notches in the underside of the banister for the corresponding spindles.
Drill the underside of the banister to the right depth for the spindles to be inserted. Place a bead of glue on each of the spindles.
Lower the new banister onto the spindles and wipe off any excess glue that oozes out. You'll probably want a couple of helpers for this to get everything lined up before lowering the banister into place.
Attach the new banister at the top of the stairs and to the newel post at the bottom. This can be done with brackets designed for stair rails.
Tips and warnings
- Always measure everything twice before cutting or drilling wood. Solid wood fixtures are expensive and you want as few mistakes as possible.