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Installing vinyl flooring on stairs

Updated February 21, 2017

Vinyl flooring is a great idea for stairs because it is durable and maintenance free. Vinyl flooring also does not need to be vacuumed, which can be difficult on stairs. You can do this project yourself with a few tools and some time.

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When you are installing vinyl flooring on stairs, you will need to cut it to the length and width of the treads. Most vinyl flooring is flexible but you may not wish to wrap it around the stairs, as it may crack and will not adhere well. Cut the flooring so it can be installed on the riser, tread and around the nose without mismatching the pattern if possible. That might be tricky, but do the best you can, it yield better results.


Once cut all you need to do is lay the flooring on a continual 1/8 bead of adhesive and secure it to the stairs. Work one stair at a time and go slowly, matching the pattern when possible. The flooring can be installed right onto plywood or on top of a felt under-layer on top of plywood. There is no special under layer required for vinyl flooring.

Nosing and Backing

To cover up the seams from the stair tread and backing, you can install a length of moulding or a simple strip of rounded 1/4 wood stripping. Tack this in with nails and secure it with adhesive glue. For the nose of the stairs you can buy plastic stair nose moulding or leave the seam open.

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About the Author

Steve Smith has published articles on a wide range of topics including cars, travel, lifestyle, business, golf, weddings and careers. His articles, features and news stories have appeared in newspapers, consumer magazines and on various websites. Smith holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from University of New Hampshire Durham.

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