Attack of the Stink Stairs

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Our basement stairs, if you couldn’t guess by the post title, stink. From what we understand the room, which is finished, originally had wall to wall carpet and then at some point the sump pump broke and overflowed so the carpet had to be ripped up. For some reason the stairs carpet was not removed. It always had a weird odor to it and with the high temperatures of the past week it really came out, and after our  foster dog threw up all over it within hours of arriving at our house (poor little guy) it really got pungent.

Long story short, the stink stairs have got to GO.  I was able to peek under a tiny corner section at the bottom to see that there were wood stairs (not cement, like the floor) so I knew that whatever the looked like I would be able to fix them.

They were carpeted all the way to the bottom, and after about two and a half hours of serious heavy labor in 94* weather they look as follows:

stairs going down the basement
Try not to be too jealous.

To start I just gathered some tools I thought would be helpful and went to town. No googling or research here, just angry stink induced demolition. I am woman! Hear me roar!

The hammer helped to pull up the death sticks on the front and back of each stair (which I will share a picture of in a later post), the crowbar assisted in death stick removal as well. The utility knife cut the carpet and padding, and the screwdriver and pliers removed the staples. So many staples. Overall it wasn’t necessary a hard to figure out job, just a frustrating and energy consuming one. Staple removal is what made for such a slow going process, there were about fifteen in each step and many were tricky to get out.

Throughout the week I plan to remove the rest of the carpet, then over the weekend get them at least spackled and primed. I have leftover grey paint from the living room that will be the final color, as well as plans to stencil the front of each stair.

So tell me, any tips for carpet removal? Do you have a stink stair problem as well?

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