How to create safe outdoor steps

With a few simple tips, you can turn your once slippery stairs into a work of art in only a day.
How to create safe outdoor steps
You will have a set of beautiful outdoor steps that have been re-faced with a fresh coat of color and texture.
Foto: Wikimedia Commons

Whether they’re made of concrete, metal or wood, designed to go straight or take a slight meander, are smooth or uneven, outdoor steps are the welcoming path to your home. Many homeowners go through great pains in choosing the right material and style of stairs for their house, so it only makes sense to add the same care into their safety.

Aside from ornate handrails, glass panels, and a wide range of other safety precautions, keeping your stairs safe can be easy. With a few simple tips, the proper paint, and a little elbow grease, you can turn your once slippery stairs into a work of art in only a day.

Did you know you can buy special paint, additive, and coatings to prevent slippage? Found quite easily at most hardware stores, you can purchase the necessary materials, that once applied, add a grip to your outdoor steps. This is an ideal solution for those stairs that are a little too smooth for safety.

Use basic tools such as 80-grit sandpaper to smooth rough areas, your choice of an all-purpose cleaner, scrubbers and a work towel to remove dirt and sanding dust. Mix paint and non-slip additive in your paint tray before applying to clean, dry stairs. You can apply the coating quite easily with a paint roller.

Let dry for 24-hours before using. You can also purchase ready-mixed versions of textured paint. Common choices include stone, sand, suede, and popcorn. To create your own textured paint for outdoor steps, begin by buying the correct type of paint for your stairs. This will vary depending on if your stairs are made of metal, wood, or concrete.

Keep in mind that when adding texture to paint, it will reduce your liquid amount by as much as 25 percent, so you should compensate for this by purchasing extra paint. While at your local home improvement center you can also purchase silica sand. This sand will eventually be your texture, or grip, on your outdoor steps.

The advantage to mixing the paint and texture yourself is that you can choose your sand grain size. Ask to see their grain sizes and choose the silica sand according to your outdoor steps. For example, you may want to go ultra-fine on smooth wood or metal stairs, or select a larger grain for rough concrete steps.

Remember that the mixture ratio is 1 part sand to 10 parts of paint. Once you have the proper paint, silica sand, and painting materials, simply prep the area according to the paint directions and apply. If it’s the correct material, you can use your remaining paint to touch-up metal railings. Once dry, you will have a set of beautiful outdoor steps that have been re-faced with a fresh coat of color and texture to keep everyone who uses them safe.