Stair treads are the horizontal parts of a staircase that are walked upon. Concrete is a mixture of a paste made of Portland cement, water and aggregates. The paste is left to harden and a hard, rock-like material is formed.
Before it hardens, the concrete is formed into slabs made to fit the width of the staircase opening. Some companies place bolts into the concrete treads so they can be easily fixed into brackets in the stair's opening. Though the treads are very tough, this arrangement makes it easy for one to be replaced if it ever cracks and removes the necessity of the entire staircase or much of the staircase to be demolished or replaced.
Though concrete stair treads are often seen in areas such as parking garages or apartment stairwells, they can be used to good effect in private homes, especially if the homes have been built in a more modern style and have contemporary decor. Some homeowners make the treads themselves by pouring the concrete into forms, attaching them to a concrete block wall, and securing them with pickets used as lag bolts. Homeowners often use the roughness of concrete to contrast with areas dominated by glass, wood or vivid colors.