illustration of deck stairs
Illustration: Eric Larsen
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Make Stairs and Railings Comfy

Much about these elements is governed by code, but there's flexibility. To make stairs easy to climb, opt for shallower steps with deeper treads. Size the treads so that you don't need to rip boards to fit their depth. Choose handrails that are easy to grip and balusters that permit views out to your yard. For safety's sake, avoid horizontal balusters or meshes that might be easy for children to climb.
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