I'm having other work done at the same time; where does your installation come in?
Often times, homeowners will be redoing the flooring at the same time as the stairs/railing. The answer as to what order work needs to be done in depends on the type of flooring:
Hardwood (installation or refinishing)/Laminate/Engineered >>> Railing Installation >>> Carpet/Tile
Do you recommend anyone for [insert trade]?
The only other company I can recommend is Pryor Flooring, if you are replacing or refinishing hardwood flooring. They have a great reputation, and I follow a lot of their jobs and notice the care and effort behind what they do.
I cannot recommend anyone for laminate, painting, drywall/framing or carpet work.
What work don't you do? What's not included?
- Painting: Absolutely no painting, including caulking or filling nail holes. Painted parts can be delivered early for pre-painting by homeowner, or can be installed unfinished and ready for painting by a third party.
- Drywall repair: There will be at least a little to fix on every job, most often from where the rail gets removed from the wall. Depending on the previous method of installation (glue, nails, screws) there may be more than just spackling to take care of.
- Flooring: SC does not work on any flooring besides the wall edge (if needed), stair treads, and landings (where applicable).
- Carpet demo: While SC uninstalls old railing systems, that work will never include carpet removal from stairs.
- Refinishing: All stain and finish work done by SC is prefinished at a shop before arriving, on all new parts.
- Wall removal: due to electrical/plumbing/missing flooring liabilities, wall removal will have to be done by either the homeowner or a third party prior to railing installation.
Who does the demo?
Homeowners are always welcome to take down the old railing if they are comfortable with it and would prefer to save on installation cost. Otherwise, SC will do demo (but never carpet removal).
Pryor will not do railing demo as of writing; in these cases, a half day SC visit prior to the flooring work is required to take down the old railing before Pryor gets there. This means that they will be able to patch in new flooring for the new railing system, which is the best possible way to avoid baluster hole covers.
Can you reuse or fill the old baluster holes?
Never! The holes may the wrong diameter, may have been laid out poorly (uneven spacing), full of glue or nails, or one of several more reasons to absolutely never use existing holes.
This results in a baluster shoe cover, as seen in some of the pictures throughout the site. It is a narrow 1x3 board that gets installed over old baluster holes, and is used to install the new balusters into it. This can be avoided by properly coordinating a new flooring installation.
How much is the deposit? How does payment work?
The deposit will be a nice round number, around half of the total job cost (as long as it covers materials), due at the time of scheduling and signing the invoice. It is used to order stair parts as quickly as possible to avoid backorders or delays; as such, deposits cannot be refunded once materials have been ordered. Post-dating the check is fine, if you need more time to decide.
The other half of the invoice is due only after job completion, once you have inspected the work.
How do we pick stain?
Stains will need to be selected by the homeowner, with some things to keep in mind. My best advice is to head over to CO Lumber (Nevada & Fillmore) to take a look at the numerous color swatches they have on display, on a variety of wood species. Otherwise, a trip to Lowes or Home Depot. Then, just send in the brand and color info!
The stain will need to be oil or gel based, and NOT water or lacquer based (Oil is the norm at Lowes/HD).
Flooring match/Duraseal: I am able to source Duraseal stains, which is what most hardwood installers will use to stain your floor. If it's a stock color, SC will just need the name. However, sometimes they will mix two stain colors, or add a neutral to make the color lighter; in this case, they will need to mix extra for SC to stain your stair parts. The color cannot be replicated after they have finished.
Color verification is paramount: If you are at all concerned about how the color will look in the home, please ask for a sample board with your stain on it, free of charge.
The floors are being water-popped to make the color darker. Can you do that?
Pryor and other hardwood floor installers offer to water-pop floors to make the color darker. While this works great on floors, it does not have the same effect on stair parts. If you choose to water-pop your floors, the railing will be a different color no matter what. At this point, a good suggestion is to have a darker color altogether, so that the railing is more of an accent to the floor rather than conforming to it.
What finish do you use?
All stair parts are prefinished at a finishing shop, using a sprayed-on, clear, satin, water-based, acrylic finish. All parts are sprayed 2-3 times, with sanding in between coats, to get the highest-quality commercial finish that is locally available for custom woodworking.
Please note that while most floor finishes are switching to water-based, a floor that is finished with an oil or other flooring finish will have a different color hue than this (or any) water-based finish. Oil finishes add an amber tint, whereas water-based finishes are crystal clear.
Another detail to keep in mind is that the sheen (shine on the finish) will not exactly match flooring finish. This is important to remember for stair treads in particular.
What else can SC do?
While Springs Carpentry will be specializing in stairs and railings, other work is available and welcome!
- Major interior door replacement
- Major interior trim replacement (base, case, crown)
- Kitchen cabinetry (CNC-precision cabinetry, custom and locally manufactured), both manufacture and installation
- Large built-ins
- Smaller work, depending on availability: Mantels, wine racks, etc., check out the old site here: springscarpentry.myportfolio.com
Can you repair something on my railing? Can we reuse [stair part]?
SC requires new parts and a full replacement of every stair part involved. There are a number of reasons why your loose newel cannot be tightened, or dog-chewed trim cannot be replaced. As such, SC does not do minor repair work on existing stairs.
Can I have wrought iron railing with a wood cap?
SC installs iron balusters when the newels and rail are wood, but a full wrought iron system will necessitate finding an ironworker shop. There are a few around town. They will come in to template the space and bring back a fully-constructed and powder-coated railing system, sans wood cap. After their installation, SC can come by to cut and fit the railing on top of the wrought iron, where applicable.
Is it just you?
Well yes it is! One of the greatest thing about redoing your stairs and railing is that from start to finish, one person will be in charge of your entire job, and all of it's details. This helps eliminate middle-men who add to the cost, as well as the potential for miscommunication that comes with adding more people to a process. Mix-ups and delays are never completely avoidable, but they can be minimized!
What's the best way to get in touch with you?
- Texting will be fastest
- Calling is also fast, but I am also usually assembling someone's railing so I may not pick up! But I will call back if it's a project I can help with.
- The Contact page on this website
- email SpringsCarpentry@gmail.com