Simple Solutions

How to Prevent Slips and Falls on Outside Steps

By: Joe Truini
Applying a self-adhesive strips to an exterior wood step.

Apply self-adhesive strips to exterior wood steps to prevent slipping.

Exterior wood steps can become slippery over time, especially when they’re wet.

One of the easiest ways to protect against slips and falls is by applying self-adhesive abrasive strips, available at home centers, to each step.

To apply abrasive strips to steps:

  1. Make sure the steps are dry and clean.
  2. Cut the abrasive strip to length.
  3. Peel off the paper backing.
  4. Align the strip on the step about 1 inch from the nose of the tread.
  5. Press the strip down into place.

Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information

Video Transcript

Joe Truini: The easiest way to prevent slips and falls on exterior stairs is with abrasive strips that you can buy at any hardware store or home center. And they come in various sizes and shapes. I prefer the kind that comes out on roll, because you can custom cut it to length.

All you need to do is stretch out the length of the abrasive tape, and then cut it with a pair of scissors. Then all you need to do is, if you look on the back, it’s got this wax paper backing.

So you just peel that off to expose the adhesive, turn it over and stick it down. You want to keep it about one-inch from the front edge—the nosing of the step. You can just eyeball it, as long as it’s close. There you go, right about one-inch—peel off the rest.

This is really sticky, so make sure you get it right where you want it, and just press it down. Now, of course, you want to put one of these on each step.

And on a wide step like this, you could put a second strip if you want. But it is really important to have it near the front edging because, of course, that’s where you step.


Please Leave a Comment

7 Comments on “How to Prevent Slips and Falls on Outside Steps”

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  • Official Comment:

    Thomas Boni Says:
    July 2nd, 2019 at 11:29 am

    Hi, John,
    This is an effective solution for preventing slips and falls on outside steps.
    These strips can be hot to step on, and it’s best to wear footwear, such as flip-flops, before doing so.
    Thanks for watching!

  • John Trousdale Says:
    June 30th, 2019 at 10:02 pm

    How do you keep the strips from becoming super hot in direct sunlight?
    Mine are on the steps to my pool and my wife complained that she burned her feet on them.

    Help in Panic !!!

  • Penelope Smith Says:
    February 6th, 2019 at 11:47 pm

    This is some really good information about slip and fall prevention. It is good to know that you should try to put a thing on your steps that will help prevent falls. That is good to know if you want to avoid getting hurt going up to your home.

  • Lynn Says:
    December 8th, 2018 at 11:42 am

    Do the adhesive strips for wood steps hold up through winter cold, snow and shoveling?

  • Abu K Safiullah Says:
    May 1st, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    let us know the price?

  • Abu K Safiullah Says:
    May 1st, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    what is the price ?

  • Marilyn Maillet Says:
    April 15th, 2018 at 7:34 am

    Strips for rocking chair were can you buy the strips you describe? Does the strip have a specific name?

    Thank you.

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How to Prevent Slips and Falls on Outside Steps