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How to Glue Down Rubber Stair Treads

Cheryl Torrie

Rubber stair treads can be used to cover wood, concrete or terrazzo steps. They provide safe footing and help prevent falls, and when installed properly, they muffle footsteps in noisy stairways. They also come in a variety of colors and styles. With the right glue and epoxy nose caulk, they're easy to install.

Step 1

Move the rubber stair treads inside 48 hours before installation and keep them in a room with an ambient temperature of at least 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Sweep the stairs with a broom to remove dust and debris, then mop.

Step 2

Brush on a heavy coat of paint stripper to remove any paint or varnish on the steps. Wait until the paint and varnish bubbles--about a half-hour--and scrape the old paint or varnish off with a paint scraper.

Step 3

Repair any gouges or cracks on the steps by troweling underlayment compound into them and scraping the surface level.

Step 4

Lay the rubber stair treads on the stairs so that they are snug against the step nosing and mark with an awl where they must be trimmed for depth and width.

Step 5

Trim each tread by placing a metal straight edge along the awl marking and cutting the excess away with a linoleum knife.

Step 6

Trowel epoxy nose caulk onto the nose of each step. Spread it evenly so the stair treads will fit snugly and will not crack.

Step 7

Paint rubber flooring adhesive onto the step surface and nosing, starting at the top step and working your way down.

Step 8

Set the rubber stair tread in place. Start by pressing it firmly against the nose, then slowly work it onto the step from front to back.

Step 9

Run a hand roller over each tread to secure it and keep the tread nosing fitted tightly to the step nosing.