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The Pros And Cons Of Spiral Staircases

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If you're remodelling your home or building an extension, one thing you'll need to think about is the type of staircase you'd like.  Spiral staircases are a very popular feature in modern home design, and you might like to consider the pros and cons of opting for one.  Read on to find out more.

Advantages of spiral staircases

Space maximisation

A big advantage of spiral staircases is that they consume much less space than traditional straight ones.  Some people are fearful that a spiral staircase will be steeper or narrower than a straight one, making it more difficult to climb.  This is not the case as the same building regulations regarding rise must be observed in both styles, and that steep and narrow feeling is just an optical illusion.

Space-saving spiral staircases can be sited in places where a straight staircase would simply not be an option, for example in corners.  This makes a spiral staircase a great idea for a cellar or loft conversion where space is at a premium.


A good contractor will be able to customise a spiral staircase to suit your home.  The staircase can wind clockwise or anti-clockwise, have either closed or open treads, and be made of a number of different materials.  Traditional wooden spiral staircases are timeless and classic, whereas metal, coloured or even glass options can add an interesting design twist to a more contemporary home design.

As well as giving an interior design flourish, a spiral staircase can add elegance as well as practicality to the outside of your home.  For example, a steel, aluminium or iron spiral staircase can be used to connect your ground-level patio decking to a balcony, without obstructing your view or cutting out the light.  Metal staircases are usually low maintenance as they are specially treated to resist temperature variations and water. 


Spiral staircases are actually safer than straight ones.  If you trip on a straight staircase, you are likely to fall right to the bottom as there is nothing to break your fall.  However, a slip on a spiral staircase will probably see you fall against the balustrade or be caught at the first curve making it much less likely that you'll hurt yourself.

Disadvantages of spiral staircases

There are a few reasons why a spiral staircase might not be suitable for your home.  Their design can make it rather awkward for carrying bulky items of furniture up and down, especially items like heavy armchairs, wardrobes and the like.

If you live in a busy household, traffic jams on the stairs may occur more frequently than they would with straight stairs where two people can pass more easily. 

Spiral stairs can also be more time-consuming to clean.  Their design means that you really have to clean them on your hands and knees in order to get rid of the dust and debris that accumulates in the many twists and corners.

Sometimes kids and pets can be fearful of negotiating spiral staircases with open treads as the feeling of space between them accentuates the drop beneath.  The easy solution here is to choose a design with closed treads.

In conclusion

A spiral staircase can be a stylish and practical innovation for home remodelling and renovation.  Have a chat with a contractor from a company like Coastal Stairs Pty Ltd for more advice on whether a spiral staircase would be a good choice for your home.