The Benefits of Installing a Metal Staircase

Design is about more than just aesthetics; it’s about combining functionality with style to create spaces that are not only beautiful but also practical and durable. 

One such practical yet stylish addition you can make to your home or commercial space is a metal staircase which offers more versatility in design than concrete or wood. 

At Caldwell Metal Fabrication, we build custom staircases which enable customers to choose from a wide variety of options, including additional materials and features like a glass balustrade or a sturdy handrail. But if you’ve never planned a staircase into your project before, it can be difficult to know where to start and what the important considerations are.

In this blog, we’ll delve into the numerous benefits of installing a bespoke metal staircase, detailing everything from the individual steps and the railing to the landing, baluster and tread. We will also discuss the variety of designs available, and how you can choose the right design for maximum durability and style.

Why choose a metal staircase?

Metal staircases, predominantly made from robust materials like mild steel, stainless steel, aluminium, or wrought iron, have a surface synonymous with strength and durability. Concrete and metal are resistant to common issues that plague wooden stairs steps, such as rot and decay, making it an excellent choice for both indoor and outdoor applications. 

The toughness of these materials, appreciated by homeowners and companies alike, ensure your staircase can withstand heavy traffic and require minimal maintenance, making them an excellent long-term investment for your home or for your client if you are a contractor.

Unparalleled durability and strength of metal stairs

The versatility of metal allows for an impressive array of designs. From the elegance of metal spiral staircases, their steps elegantly winding upwards, to the contemporary look of straight ones, or even the unique appeal of curved staircases with special railing designs using plating, stamping or cutting to achieve the desired effect. There is a design to suit every taste and style. 

At Caldwell, a bespoke feature staircase can be customised further with various finishes like powder coating, galvanizing, or anodizing which give you the flexibility to match them to the existing décor of any home or commercial property seamlessly.

One obvious and crucial aspect of a staircase fabrication – or any custom staircase design to that matter – is safety. As experts in the field, our team at Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication ensures all our metal staircases, be it the stairs with their glass balustrade or those with a steel handrail, meet or exceed necessary safety and structural regulations. We also install features like handrails, balustrades, and barricades to provide the necessary safety elements in addition to the decoration along the staircases themselves. We understand that each staircase installation is unique, with its own installation challenges and risks and therefore requires a personalised approach to ensure it meets safety guidelines while satisfying the needs of the end-user.

Variety of metal staircase designs

Successful installation of a metal staircase, whether it has a glass baluster or tread made of another material, requires a comprehensive understanding of the criteria necessary to reduce risks and ensure the staircase serves its intended purpose. As proficient stair-building experts, we ensure the process of installing the stairs runs smoothly. 

Every detail, from the landing to the steps and railings, is meticulously fabricated, resulting in a flawless final product. Post-installation, these staircases can be relatively easy to maintain, needing only regular cleaning to keep them in prime condition for many years to come.

While metal staircases, whether they come with a concrete tread or a stylish glass surface, may initially cost more than wooden counterparts, their durability and minimal maintenance requirements make them a cost-effective choice in the long run. As experienced metalwork fabricators, we provide cost-effective solutions tailored to your needs, ensuring you get the most out of your project budget.

Staircase safety and regulations

The following are some of the key aspects of staircase safety regulations in the UK, primarily as set out in the UK Building Regulations (Part K: Protection from falling, collision and impact). These rules are designed to ensure that stairs are safely designed and constructed:

General rules for stairs:

  • A staircase should have handrails on both sides if it is wider than 1m.
  • For stairs less than 1m wide, you should have a handrail on at least one side.
  • A stair with a total rise of more than 600mm should have a handrail.

Rise and going (tread) dimensions:

  • The ‘rise’ is the vertical distance between the treads. The rise should be uniform and between 150mm and 220mm.
  • The ‘going’ (or tread) is the depth of the step. It should be uniform and between 220mm and 300mm.
  • Maximum pitch: The maximum pitch for a private stair is 42°.

Headroom:

Generally, you should have at least 2m of clear headroom throughout the length of the stair, measured vertically from the pitch line.

Landings:

  • Every staircase should have a landing area at the top and bottom.
  • The width and length of the landing should be at least as long as the smallest width of the flight.
  • No single step should occur at the start or end of a flight.

Balustrading:

Any gaps in balustrading (such as between spindles or panes of glass) should not allow a 100mm sphere to pass through, with the exception of the triangle formed between the tread, riser, and bottom rail, which should not allow a 125mm sphere to pass through.

Guarding:

Flights and landings should be guarded if there’s a drop greater than 600mm. The height of guarding should be at least 900mm on landings and 900mm on the flight of stairs.

Access and usage:

Stairs should provide suitable means of access, considering the people who will be using them. 

The regulations make a distinction between private and non-private stairs. Private stairs are those that serve one dwelling, while non-private stairs serve more than one dwelling or are a common stair in a block of flats.

Materials and construction: 

The materials used should be appropriate for the purpose, and the staircase should be robust enough to withstand the loads they are likely to face.

Alternate or space-saving staircases:

These can only be used in certain conditions and have their own specific set of guidelines. They’re typically for lofts or areas where there isn’t enough space for a full traditional staircase.

Spiral or helical stairs:

These also have their own specific set of guidelines. They can be used as the main staircase in a home but often have specific conditions under which they can be utilised.

Consult an expert for advice on specific regulations around stair fabrication

The above are general guidelines and might not cover all specific situations. Local authorities for example may have their own guidelines and requirements. If you’re planning a construction or renovation, it’s always best to consult the most recent regulations or a professional in the field. This is where Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication can help. We have worked on projects with significant complexities and can find a solution that will ensure you stay compliant and still meet your needs.

Choosing the right metal staircase design involves many considerations, including the overall aesthetic of your space, functionality, and personal preferences. Is the room narrow? Then a spiral staircase might be the answer. Is there an abundance of space? A switchback or dog-leg staircase design could serve as a feature of the area. Should you go for straight or curved steps? An elegant or contemporary railing? Matching the finish of the staircase to your interior can significantly impact the overall look and feel. We can work with you or your architect to find the right solution.

At Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication, we have produced a wide variety of metal staircase designs, catering for residential, commercial, and industrial needs. With a project as critical as this it is important to find a metalwork fabricator you can rely on to deliver excellent customer service every step of the way.

Whether it’s a staircase with a stylish landing for a residential property, showroom stairs for a commercial establishment, a statement staircase for an educational institution, or an exterior fire escape for a transportation hub, we have the expertise and resources to bring your vision to life.

Installation and Maintenance

What sets us apart at Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication is our commitment to delivering superior custom products coupled with unparalleled customer service. With a proven track record in providing stairways and bannisters or balustrades for diverse projects, we pride ourselves on our skilled metalworkers who pay meticulous attention to detail. Our dedicated team collaborates with architects, builders, and civil engineers to ensure all project details and construction standards are met, offering a seamless, hassle-free experience for our clients from concept to completion.

In conclusion, installing a metal staircase in your home or commercial space is an investment in style, durability, and functionality. With the right design and a trusted partner like Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication, you can enhance the aesthetics of any space while also ensuring safety and durability. Whether it’s a simple or intricate design, a metal staircase can serve as a focal point in the area, blending practicality with eye-catching style.

Cost and value for money

While metal staircases may initially cost more than their wooden counterparts, their durability and minimal maintenance requirements make them a cost-effective choice in the long run. As experienced metalwork fabricators, we can advise you on the most cost-effective solutions for your project and tailor your stairs to your needs to ensure you get the most out of your investment.

At Caldwell Metalwork Fabrication, we can work with all types of metal staircase and fire escapes designs, catering to residential, commercial, and industrial needs. 

The Caldwell Difference

With a proven track record in manufacturing stairways and bannister fabrications for diverse projects, we pride ourselves on our skilled metalworkers and attention to detail. Our dedicated team collaborates with architects, builders, contractors and civil engineers to ensure all project details and construction standards are met, offering a seamless, hassle-free experience from concept to completion. We’re committed to providing quality customer service and ensuring complete satisfaction.

We have a simple four-step process:

1. Scope And Plan

Taking your own design team drawings and ideas or utilising our experience and expertise we’ll scope your project and advise on the best solution for your needs and provide an accurate best-value quote from the outset.

2. Manufacture

Our experienced in-house skilled team will assemble your metalwork items in our Hertfordshire premises and manage finishing tasks with selected expert contract partners where required.

3.  Supply And Delivery

You can collect your items from our workshop building in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, England or we can deliver to your site in Essex, London, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, East Anglia and further afield, using our vehicles and drivers.

4. Install

Our expert team can install your metalwork or even build on site, if required, using their extensive knowledge to ensure integration into your project is carried out to the highest quality standards to meet relevant building regulations.

If you’re looking for a metalwork partner you can depend on, contact our team today.

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