Saturday, August 23, 2014


As I mentioned in an earlier entry we opted not to have a deck included when our house was built. Our sales representative was honest with us that a better one could be added for less later. The downside to this was that a railing was placed over the sliding door opening on our morning room per the building code. Sometime next year we expect to add a deck and possibly a patio but haven't figured out exactly what we want to do yet. Until then we needed a set of stairs to get in and out and this past week I finally got around to building them.

There's not much to it. This is what was required to build it:
One 4x4x8
Three 4-Step Stair Stringers
Bag of quick set concrete
2x10 lumber cut to the width of stairs
3" Galvanized screws
Paver Stones

All of the wood listed above is pressure treated. The stair stringers are 25 inches tall so I cut the 4x4 in half to 48 inches for each piece. Using a borrowed post hole digger I dug a roughly 20 inch deep hole on each side of the sliding glass door of our morning room about two inches away from the foundation wall. (It wasn't worried the two holes being the exact same depth since I later trimmed off the excess 4x4 at the top once the stringers were in place.) In the bottom of each hole I placed a paver stone so the posts wouldn't sink over time. I then placed the 4x4 post in each hole, had my wife hold it straight, and then poured water and the concrete mix around it.

The bag said the concrete only needed a few hours to dry but I ended up not getting back to this until a few days after I set them so they were more than ready at that point. I was then able to attach the stringers and steps with the screws. I also had to use two additional paver stones under the middle and right stringers in order to make the whole thing level as the ground slopes slightly there.

It's worth mentioning that I had originally wanted to attach the stairs directly to the side of the house like what is shown here on another Sienna. Unlike that house however we have siding all the way down to the foundation and I didn't want to mess that up for something that will ultimately be temporary. It certainly would have simplified things had I been able to do that. 


  1. I know I'm a little late, and by little, I mean a few years. But nice post, as I'm looking to add something similar myself when our home is done (

    1. Glad to know it was useful. It really was quite simple and served us well until we had a deck built the following summer. It seemed stupid to us that RH didn't even offer this as an option. I'm sure they could have done it quicker, at less cost, and made it look nicer.