Outdoor stairs require more care and consideration than one might think, and certainly a whole lot more than indoor stairs, specifically due to their exposure to the outdoor elements.
Therefore, it’s important to utilize a material that can withstand these elements, and provide a safe and reliable grip.
Luckily, we’ve done some research, and come up with our top ten best outdoor stair treads, as well as some notable considerations going into your purchase.
What to Consider When Buying Outdoor Stair Treads?
One of the first things that you’re going to want to consider is the adhesion mechanism that’s involved with the product. Each item on our list (and others) is likely going to have a different way to be installed, and different chemicals/materials used to ensure proper adhesion.
Depending on the style of stair tread, it can be held in place by screws, adhesive tape, or simply the traction that comes with the manufacturing materials (rubber). Each will come with certain pros and cons, so just take the time to understand the differences, and the effects that might have on you.
Since these stair treads are going to be for outdoor use, arguably the most essential factor to consider is going to be weatherproof capabilities of the product. Most people who are investing in outdoor anti-slip stair treads are doing it to avoid nasty falls that typically come with the winter elements (rain, snow, ice, etc.). So, any outdoor stair tread you buy should be able to withstand these sorts of weather conditions.
A great alternative for the winter months is having a snow melting mat, check out our full guide of the best outdoor snow-melting mats! The guide includes stair heating mats that are perfect for preventing ice and snow build-up, check it out!
In order to make quality non-slip, and non-skid stair treads, metal is one of the materials primarily used in the process. The metal is typically made from very strong and rigid aluminum that allows for traction on stairs. Abrasive particles are assembled into strips, which are then fitted into the metal.
Another option for making treads is to use fiberglass, which is especially beneficial for outdoor use. Not only is it extremely versatile, but there are 6 available grades of fiberglass, all of which provide different levels of strength.
A lot of non-slip stair treads are also made with rubber, which is designed to work better than any other material in extreme weather. It’s typically made of purely recycled materials so that it can bear every possible hazard. Then you have tape material designed to stick and hold on to any surface in almost any weather, pretty cool stuff.
10 Best Anti-Slip Stair Treads for Outdoor Use
1. Trazon Grip Tape
Your number one best solution to create an anti-slip stair tread for outdoor use is to peel back and try Trazon Grip Tape. This professional-grade anti-skid tape for steps is optimal for both indoor or outdoor use, and adheres seamlessly to a variety of surfaces. It’s constructed with premium heavy-duty 80-grit tape, which allows for reliable traction and protection from slips, or falls.
On top of all this, Trazon Grip Tape is waterproof, long-lasting, and peel-resistant in any weather condition, so there’s an unlimited number of ways you can use this product to your advantage. Plus, this particular model measures 4” by 35’, which should be more than enough to take care of all your ‘stair treading needs.
2. Handi-Treads Non-Slip Safety Tread
Following closely behind as our second-best option, we have the Non-Slip Safety Tread provided by Handi-Treads, a reputable American manufacturer with a history for innovation. Each 30” long safety tread can be mounted to a wood surface in less than a minute, with twelve pre-drilled mounting holes readily available for a quick and easy set up.
Handi-Treads also carry a patented 360 degree walking surface that allows for additional slip-protection from water, ice, or snow. They’re ideal for wooden steps, wooden ramps, or concrete surfaces, but they can truly be installed just about anywhere, rain or shine (and in any temperature). Plus, they come in various colours, and size formations.
3. Bungalow Flooring Waterhog Stair Treads
Bungalow Flooring Waterhog Stair Treads are another amazing alternative and without question one of the best anti-slip stair treads for outdoor use. It comes with a set of 4 treads, each measuring 30” long, and each specifically designed to provide premium protection against wet, slippery, and splintered surfaces. This ultra-tough exterior features a durable, eco-friendly PET fiber made with up to 94% recycled materials, as well as high-grade construction to stand up to extreme weather conditions.
Plus, the SBR rubber backing provides some serious grip and naturally grips to almost any surface. It’s easy to clean, easy to install, guaranteed not to rot, mold, or mildew, and is stain, fade, and water-resistant. Undeniably one of the best anti-slip treads for outdoor use available right now.
4. LifeGrip Anti Slip Traction Treads with Glow in Dark Stripe
LifeGrip is another tremendously reliable brand that carries one of the best anti-slips stair treads for outdoor use on the market; the Anti-Slip Traction Treads with Glow in Dark Stripe. This unique anti-slip safety tape design is cost-effective, multi-functional, and remarkably durable. Plus, it comes with a photoluminescent stripe that can be charged by either natural or artificial light sources. Providing a helpful guide for people as they walk down the steps, ramp, walkway, etc.
Also, all LifeGrip General Anti-Slip Tapes are made of PET material base film instead of PVC, which provides an ultra-durable layer of protection against extreme weather conditions. They can withstand temperature anywhere from -10 degrees celsius, to +60 degrees celsius, and they’re guaranteed not to crack, peel, or disintegrate from extreme hot (or cold) weather. And the 80 Grit Aluminum Oxide traction pad provides safe and reliable foot traction without sacrificing comfort. Plus, it’s thick and aggressive acrylic adhesive is strong enough to bond to any surface, making it one of the most effective and durable options on the market.
5. Metal Anti-Slip Stair Tread (Best Quality)
Direct Metals Anti-Slip Stair Tread is a round hole pattern tread that helps with slip resistance, and is designed with perforated, raised buttons, and debossed holes that allow for proper airflow. Each tread is open grip, with a durable galvanized steel material, and is 36” in length, 10” in width, and 2” in height.
Despite the sturdy design, this product is remarkably easy to install due to the integral end caps with mounting holes and slots. Although it is easy to install, it takes a bit more hands-on work because this tread acts almost as the stair itself if you want it to. It wraps around wooden decking/stairs, or you can find a way to install it over a variety of outdoor surfaces. The side holes enable easy screw-in installation.
The unique treads allow for reliable slip resistance, and user reviews are off the charts with this item. Making it more than worthy to be considered one of the best anti-slip treads for outdoor use.
6. Hedume 4 Pack Rubber Stair Mats
The Hedume 4-Pack Rubber Stair Mats are a remarkably effective alternative that not only helps to prevent slips and falls but also provides a unique sense of style. Each tread mat is made with natural and reclaimed rubber, with the decorative design adding a nice personal touch to your outdoor living space. Easy to clean, and surprisingly affordable, there’s no going wrong with the Rubber Stair Mats by Hedume.
7. LifeGrip Anti Slip Transparent Tape
LifeGrip slides into our 7th spot on the list with yet another anti-slip tread designed for outdoor use, their Anti-Slip Transparent Tape. This clean, non-skid adhesive tape is made from environmentally friendly materials with a soft textured surface for reliable traction, as well as substantial comfort. It also has improved waterproof adhesion, so you can use it on any surface, and have confidence that it will withstand even the toughest and most rigorous weather conditions.
Perhaps the biggest advantage with this item comes with its transparent appearance, which keeps your surfaces ‘ intact’ without ruining the aesthetic of your space. If you’re in search of a subtle yet quick and easy-to-install anti-slip tread that’s sure to last, then the LifeGrip Anti-Slip Transparent Tape is the perfect choice for you!
8. Stair Carpets for Outdoor Steps
For those who are looking for a more comfortable alternative, without compromising durability or performance, then look no further than the Stair Carpets for Outdoor Steps by Aucuda. This anti-slip design features a combination of polyester fibers and rubber backing, offering up some of the best grip and traction on the market. The firm fiber construction on the surface ensures that the wear-and-tear that comes with owning stair treads will become (somewhat) diminished.
Plus, the textured structure makes sure that all debris and water is trapped, ensuring a safe and clean environment. It comes with a set of 4 treads, each measuring 30” in length, 8 ½” in width, and ⅜” in height, and each with the ability to withstand extreme weather conditions. Though, it is advised to tape down the ends to ensure secure support in high-traffic areas of the home. Nevertheless, a very reliable anti-slip stair tread that’s ideal for indoor, or outdoor use.
9. Rubber-Cal “Coin-Grip Non-Slip Rubber Tread Stair Mats
The Rubber-Cal ‘Coin-Grip’ Non-Slip Rubber Tread Stair Mats are undoubtedly one of the best anti-slip stair treads designed for outdoor use on the market. Each mat is made using natural and reclaimed rubber, which carries remarkable natural traction for improved stability and support. Plus, step grip is further enhanced by a pattern of circular coin-shaped protrusions on the surface of each Coin-Grip mat, which can greatly reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents.
Not only does rubber protect sensitive surfaces from physical damage, but it’s also very easy to clean with the simple use of soap and water. Plus, these stair mats are resistant from a variety of harmful outdoor elements like sunlight, rain, and snow. Making the Rubber-Cal ‘Coin-Grip’ Non-Slip Rubber Tread Stair Mats one of the best options available for any homeowner.
10. Handi-Treads Non-Slip Aluminum Stair Nosing
Rounding out our top ten best anti-slip stair treads for outdoor use, we’ve got the Non-Slip Aluminum Stair Nosing presented to us by Handi-Treads. These aluminum non-slip nosings come with 9 pre-drilled mounting holes, as well as 10 color-matching stainless-steel wood screws for quick and easy installation. They also come in a variety of colors, with each piece being 30” in length, 2.75” in width, and 0.62” in height.
Non-Slip Aluminum Stair Nosings are inexpensive, easy to install, and safe from rust, rot, decay, wear out, or need replacing. Without question, an easy pick for our list of the best anti-slip stair treads for outdoor use.
Outdoor Anti-Slip Stair Treads FAQs
Can You Use Stair Treads on Wooden Stairs?
Absolutely! In fact, utilizing stair treads for wooden stairs in (or outside) your home can help you create an alternate appearance, while still maintaining a safe and enjoyable atmosphere. Just make sure to take the proper precautions beforehand since installing stair treads on a wood surface could involve different tools, and methods.
For example, with wooden stairs, you’re going to need to seal the sides of the tread in ‘closed stair wells’ because the paint can cause moisture to build up and infiltrate the wood. So, be aware of your environment, and make sure that you have the proper tools to get started.
How do I Apply Anti Slip Grip Tape?
- First off, you’re going to need to clean the stairs thoroughly of any debris by using a degreasing solvent on metal surfaces or degreasing detergent on tile, wood, or concrete surfaces.
- Next, apply a stripping compound to the area, if necessary, but ensure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions and remember to scrape off the old finish with a quality scraper.
- Thirdly, you will want to get a wet sponge, and then rinse the stairs and allow them to dry completely before applying a strip of primer in the areas where you intend to put the tape down.
- Once the primer has dried, you can begin laying down a strip of anti-slip tape ½ inch from the edge of the desired location, and across the surface.
- Next, peel back the first 2 inches of the back by lifting up a single strip, then press the tape firmly onto the surface and make sure to steer clear of the adhesive.
- Press the tape down, peel off the next few inches of the backing, and lift the strip, then use a rubber hand roller to roll over the surface, repeating the process until the job is finished.
If you need to adjust the length of the tape, it is best to cut it with a utility knife (if it comes in a roll) and then go over it with the rubber roller.
If you’re planning on applying multiple strips of grip tape, I highly recommend using a rubber roller like this one on Amazon. It will remove air bubbles when applying, making the grip stick on for a longer duration.
What are some Alternatives to Using Stair Treads?
Contrary to popular opinion, there are actually a variety of effective alternatives to using stair treads, including; sand, salt, heating melting mats, shingles, mineral granules, and even some household products (like dry coffee grounds, bird seeds, non-clumping cat litter, or ash from your fireplace). While some of these are likely going to be a lot messier than others, they can certainly help to prevent nasty bumps and bruises from accumulating over time.
One of my favorite alternatives that I recommend is using anti-slip paint or adding an additive to paint to make it anti-slip. You can read our related articles about it here:
- How to Add Sand to Paint to Make it Non-Slip
- 10 Best Exterior Anti-Slip Paints for Wood and Concrete
All in all, it’s essential that you find the best non-slip outdoor treads because it can help protect you and your family from slipping, falling, and potentially seriously injuring yourself.
In fact, each year nearly 1 million Americans are injured from stairs and falling accidents.
However, the good news is that we’ve laid out numerous options, and methods for ensuring a safe and slip-free environment in your home.
All that’s left for you to do is choose what’s best for you and your family!
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.