R311.7.11 Alternating tread devices. The maximum riser height shall be 8 ¼-inches. Required handrails shall be of one of the following types or provide equivalent graspability. 1926.1052(c)(1) Stairways having four or more risers or rising more than 30 inches (76 cm), whichever is less, shall be equipped with: (A) At least one handrail; and (B) A stair rail consisting of a top rail and mid-rail along each unprotected side or edge. at the sides of stairs.) CrystaLite’s 9039 top rail complies with the Type II criteria. The initial tread of the stairway shall begin at the same elevation as the platform, landing or floor surface. For further information on stairways and handrails, visit the Stairway Manufacturer’s Association (SMA) website at www.stairways.org. point of the widest clear stair width of the adjacent winders shall be used. There shall be a floor or landing at the top and bottom of each stairway. The greatest riser height within any flight of stairs shall not exceed the smallest by more than 3/8 inch. But due to the casual use of the terms “handrail” and “guardrail,” the distinction can get blurred in code applications. (with one caveat to come). If the handrail is not circular, it shall have a perimeter dimension of not less than 4 inches (102 mm) and not greater than 61/4 inches (160 mm) with a cross section of dimension of not more than 2-1/4 inches (57 mm). Handrail and Stair Rail Systems • If a stair has a minimum of four risers, a handrail is required. The rise to the next alternating tread surface should not be more than 8 inches (203 mm). The greatest nosing projection shall not exceed the smallest nosing projection by more than 3/8 inch (9.5 mm) between two stories, including the nosing at the level of floors and landings. ICC Digital Codes is the largest provider of model codes, custom codes and standards used worldwide to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures. Type I. Handrails with a circular cross section shall have an outside diameter of not less than 11/4 inches (32 mm) and not greater than 2 inches (51 mm). Handrails shall not project more than 41/2 inches (114 mm) on either side of the stairway and the clear width of the stairway at and below … Stairways – 2015 IRC Section 311.7 Read More » For example, up through the 2012 IRC, the code used the term “guardrail” without defining it, and referred to the use of a “guardrail or handrail” on the side of a stairway, as if the two served the same purpose and were interchangeable (even then, they were not). Handrails and guards, whether required or not, cannot become booby traps. Once a guard is required, the minimum height can be no less than 36 in. sphere, which is intended to prohibit a small child from passing through the guards. A nosing projection not less than 3/4 inch (19 mm) and not more than 11/4 inches (32 mm) shall be provided on stairways with solid risers. SECTION R311.5 STAIRWAYS . This article summarizes some of the significant changes affecting Housing and Small Buildings in the new NBC, the reasons for these changes, and their anticipated outcomes. 2. Always check with your building safety department for local modifications. Applicable Code: 2015 IRC Section 312 . Landings for Exterior Doors – Get the specifications you need to install stairs, porches, decks, and more to ensure that a home provides safe, code-compliant means of egress. Type II. Handrail ends shall be returned or shall terminate in newel posts or safety terminals. R311.7.8.2 Continuity. The greatest riser height within any flight of stairs shall not exceed the smallest by more than 3/8 inch (9.5 mm). Handrails for stairways shall be continuous for the full length of the flight, from a point directly above the top riser of the flight to a point directly above the lowest riser of the flight. This required depth shall continue for not less than 3/8 inch (10 mm) to a level that is not less than 13/4 inches (45 mm) below the tallest portion of the profile. It can be attached to almost anything so long as it meets loading requirements. Our 9000 and 9001 top rails have This holds true whether the guard has a handrail attached to it or not. Get complete site access to expert advice, how-to videos, Code Check, and more, plus the print magazine. Glenn Mathewson is a consultant and educator with buildingcodecollege.com. Model stair code rule on when a handrail is required. R311.7.5.1 Risers. Below are additional excerpts from the IRC, IBC, and Florida handrail codes: The non-circular handrail profile shown above is illustrated in the Florida Handrail code at 505.7.2. where the additional details are specified: Where the top of the guard doesn’t serve as a handrail, there’s no maximum limit on its height. IgCC New Edition Published Public Comment Hearing Public Comments Available R311.7.12 Ships ladders. Learn what the most common dimensions are and why. The International Residential Code for One-and Two-Family Dwellings (IRC) and the International Building Code (IBC) address staircase railings. While appropriate for handrails, the question has arisen of whether considering loads pulling inward, upward, or inline on a guard is appropriate. __ * Reference Source – 2015 International Residential Code … 2012 RESIDENTIAL STAIR GUIDE . When Required: Along any open-sided walking surface, including stairs, ramps and landings, that are located more than 30” vertically above grade at any point within 36” horizontally to the edge of the open side. With this consideration, all guards and handrails, required or not, must resist a 200-lb. U:\Progress\Dana\POLICY\Stair Treads\International Building Code Stair treads and risers.doc 06/23/2014 1009.3.3 Profile. And here’s where the caveat about guard height comes in. 2. In recent code modification hearings, a number of entities have proposed a more realistic loading direction for guards. and would not require a guard, but would require a handrail to be available to assist someone’s movement. to 4 in. For more information, see Section R311.7 of the 2015 International Residential Code for a more in-depth look at stair requirements. 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