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Concrete/Masonry folks

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by tthomass, Dec 26, 2008.

  1. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Messages: 3,498

    I've got (5) steps coming out of a house. In the past, common practice has been to frame and pour it as one solid cube of concrete with a footer under it. I have seen another mason form it up after pouring the footer and then fill a lot of it with gravel to reduce the amount of concrete needed. I have also seen mason's using block in combination with gravel prior to concrete.

    On one job I worked on we did the concrete block. Used them as our form and filled them solid with concrete. Next day filled with gravel and left if for 6" thick of concrete once poured to finish the steps. This was all later covered with stone.

    What is your practice and why?
  2. MRBsx2

    MRBsx2 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    the way i do these is dig down to frost pour 10 inch or 12 inch footer then lay block out to the dimensions of the steps to work out with stone or if i am laying brick. this is how these steps are done

    Pictures May 12, 2008 018.jpg
  3. denver 2

    denver 2 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 35

    The most critical factor to steps is the footer. On steps it would be advisable to tie in vertical rebar into the steps with the footer rebar. If useing block, then pin vertical rebar in first step and sides approx. every two feet, then grout block solid on first course and sides. You can fill the rest with gravel if you like then cap with whatever. If caping treads with stone or brick on top of block make certain that the brick or stone material have something to bond to other that just gravel. You can accomplish this by filling the top couse of each step with grout. Hope this helps.
  4. Bru75

    Bru75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 582

    I built a set of steps last year similar to your description. I was required by code to put the footers on the same level as the house. From there I built the sides with cinder block, filled the inside with gravel, and formed the steps on top of it all. It was then covered with stone veneer on the sides and risers, with bullnose pavers for treads.
    Just be sure to use a lot of rebar for the step slab.
    I also installed heavy duty masonry ties attached to the existing foundation between every course of block.
    I'll try to post picures when I have more time.
    Hope this helps.
  5. Bru75

    Bru75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 582

    Here are some pics.




  6. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,260

    Bru's way has to be the quickest on a large set of stairs. On a small set i would just use the pedestal method.
  7. Bru75

    Bru75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 582

    You are probably right. This particular set would have cost a fortune to pour solid (not to mention the extra weight), but a pedestal would have been a lot less work.

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