Steps Depth

naperthrill

Active member
Apr 29, 2020
35
Frisco, TX
When you have steps coming down into the pool from the decking, is there a recommended step width/depth? I think standard is 1 foot, but wondering if 14 inch, 16, 18 inches is better or recommended. thanks
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
17,844
Northern NJ
8" to 12" is standard.


ANSI/NSPI code states the risers should stand 12 inches at most. This will allow you to get by with three steps in a 3-foot-deep shallow end.

But it’s not really natural to step up that high. We’re programmed to step up about 71/2 inches at a time in homes or backyards. That’s why some professionals like shorter risers. Some of these experts prefer to work within the 8- to 10-inch range. When small children are involved, they’ll try to make the risers 8 inches tall.

If pool or spa users have a tough time keeping their balance, whether because of age, illness or even obesity, you may want the steps as short as 6 inches. “Anything less than 6 inches in drop is abnormal,” says Al Rizzo, owner of Rizzo Pools in Newington, Conn. “When you start getting 2-, 3- or 4-inch drop, that’s actually a hazard” because we’re not programmed to step in such tiny increments.





More then 12' becomes a problem for people with limited mobility and is against some local codes. We will all become handicapped someday. You never know what someone in your family may have leg problems.
 

naperthrill

Active member
Apr 29, 2020
35
Frisco, TX
Agreed, didn't mean to have more than a 1 foot drop, was wondering if step "length" from back to front of the step length of 12 inches is what is typically recommended. good to know on step "height"
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
17,844
Northern NJ
Agreed, didn't mean to have more than a 1 foot drop, was wondering if step "length" from back to front of the step length of 12 inches is what is typically recommended. good to know on step "height"
The article linked above discusses tread depth...

The code states that the tread, or surface of the step, must be at least 10 inches wide from front to back. Rizzo finds 12 inches more comfortable, especially for those unsteady on their feet.

Try to make the top step even wider. This does two things: It compensates for space that’s lost when a cantilever coping overhangs the step. And it also helps the swimmer feel steadier when changing venues from deck to pool. “We typically do an 18-inch-wide top step, and 12-inch treads for the rest,” Fitzgerald says.

Be especially aware of this in corners, where top steps tend to be as small as 1 foot wide. “So you’re teetering on the edge of this really narrow thing,” Goldstone says.

If you want the steps to also function as benches, start with 12-inch treads and go up from there. “It could be 15- to 18 inches and provide plenty of room,” says Mark Allison, president of Allison Construction in Goodlettsville, Tenn. “We’ve done some as wide as 2 feet.”