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Removing the Old Stairs

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Pull out any plugs that are hiding screws along the posts and railings. Use a screwdriver to wedge them out if needed. Unscrew the handrail from the rail fasteners holding it to the newel post with a screwdriver. Lift the handrail and take it away from your work area.

Unscrew the screws holding the newel post or posts in place at the bottom of the stairs. Lift the newel post from the floor and dispose of it.

Unscrew each baluster and discard them. The balusters are screwed to the treads and will be little trouble to remove. Balusters are the decorative shafts used to support the handrail between posts. Continue removing balusters until you reach the top of the staircase.

Remove the lag bolt holding the hand railing and any rosettes between the handrail and the wall with a rachet.

Lift and pull up any carpeting or runners installed on the staircase. In most instances, this can be pulled up with minimal effort. Remove the padding that was under the carpet in the same manner.

Pry up the tack strip that was used to hold the carpet in place with a pry bar if you intend to refinish and reuse the stair treads. Remove the tack strips from the landing as well if the carpet will not be replaced.

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