How to Replace Balusters in a Raised Ranch

Written by don kress
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How to Replace Balusters in a Raised Ranch
Raised ranch homes may incorporate several sets of balusters. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Because a raised ranch home typically uses a large number of balusters due to the number of staircases in the home, replacing them can be a challenge. Each stairway must be properly measured so the balusters are precisely the same size as the balusters that they replace. Additionally, some raised ranch homes may incorporate balusters that are installed around the rooms that are near and above the entry stairways of the home. These, due to their necessity for safety, must be properly installed to prevent injuries.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Remove the newel post on the upper floor railing first so you can replace the balusters from the top of the home down. To remove the newel post, unscrew the decorative cap and look on the bottom side of the rail near the post. It will be secured either with nails or with screws. If they are nails, strike the bottom of the rail near the newel post moderately hard with a hammer. If they are screws, unscrew them from the rail. This dislodges the fittings that hold the rail in place.

  2. 2

    Raise the rail up. Some of balusters hold into the rail while others remain in the floor. They are attached to the rail with dowel pins which simply pull out of the upper rail or the floor. Remove them and set them aside.

  3. 3

    Install the replacement balusters into the floor, and then align each with the corresponding hole for the baluster's dowel pin in the rail. It is easiest to install them one at a time while lowering the upper rail at an angle. When all of the balusters are inserted into their corresponding holes in the rail, secure the newel post and screw its decorative top back into place.

  4. 4

    Perform the same operation when removing and replacing the stair balusters in the entry stairway where it splits up and down stairs. In a raised ranch, this may be either on the right or left side of the entryway.

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