How Many Stairs In A Flight?

For most of our lives, you’ve probably wandered up and down countless flights of stairs without paying much thought or attention to it, but have you ever wondered exactly how many stairs are actually in a flight of stairs?

How Many Stairs In A Flight?

It might sound like a ridiculous question, and many people might just assume that the amount of stairs in a flight of stairs varies, but it actually has a much stricter definition than you might initially think, and once you learn everything there is to know about flights of stairs, you’ll soon want to explain it all to somebody else. 

So, to find out how many stairs are in a flight, as well as what constitutes a flight of stairs, their measurements, and more, then keep reading on through our guide!

How Many Stairs Are There In A Flight?

When most people refer to a flight of stairs, they are probably referring to the typical flight of stairs that can be found just about anywhere.

A flight of stairs traditionally features 12 steps, however, this number might vary depending on the ceiling height of the building, for example, a ten-foot high ceiling would require additional stairs than you would typically find in a building with an eight-foot high ceiling.

So when it comes to determining just how many stairs are in a flight of stairs, you have to take into account the heights of the ceiling and walls first. 

So, to find out some more information about the minimum and maximum number of stairs a flight of stairs can have, as well as the necessary measurements and more, keep reading onwards!

What Is A Flight Of Stairs?

Contrary to popular belief, a flight of stairs actually has quite a rigid definition, which many people happen to get wrong purely due to a lack of information, so if you’re looking for the exact definition, then look no further: 

Generally, a flight of stairs refers to a set of continuous steps.

Note that a flight of stairs does not have a landing in the middle of them, so any sets of stairs that are separated by a landing in the middle are not considered a flight.

So any sets of stairs that have a landing in them are not considered to be flights of stairs.

Flights of stairs are also equal in both their size and their measurements, which will run uniformly without any interruptions from the bottom to the top. 

Requirements For A Flight Of Stairs

How Many Stairs In A Flight?

What constitutes a flight of stairs might seem like a difficult thing to process initially, however, the reality is that flights of stairs can actually vary a lot, they can be curved, spiraled, running, or just plain straight stairs, and there is no limits on the number of stairs required for a set of stairs to be considered a flight. 

The only requirement for a set of stairs to be considered a flight of stairs is that they are uninterrupted and don’t have a landing or stop at any point!

The typical flight of stairs will usually have between 12 and 15 steps though, as this will provide the optimum size step with a decent amount of tread for people to be able to walk up and down them without any issues. 

What Are The Origins Of The Name ‘A Flight Of Stairs’?

You might be wondering where this name comes from, as walking up or down stairs certainly does feel like a flight as we know it, so where did this weird and unusual name come from originally? 

Well, the term actually originates from France! This is because in France they say “flying upstairs”, or as we know it, walking up the stairs, is much like “travelling back in time”.

In addition to this, the word “flight” itself is used to refer to the flow of a moving body without any interruptions or stopping, much like how a flight of stairs has no landings or stops!

There is often a confusion between a flight of stairs, and steps and many people don’t realize that they aren’t actually the same!

Steps are used to refer to stairs that are outdoors, whereas a flight of stairs is more typically reserved for stairs that have been established indoors. 

How Many Steps Are In A Flight Of Stairs?

As previously mentioned, there are no real rules that outline how many steps there should be in order to consider it a flight of stairs.

However, typically, a flight of stairs will usually have 12 to 13 steps, but this is entirely dependent on the building, as well as the height of the stairs themselves, in addition to why the stairs are there in the first place, as different flights of stairs for different purposes might be different sizes. 

Usually, a 10-foot high ceiling will typically require 17 steps, a 9-foot high ceiling will require 16 steps, whereas an 8-foot high ceiling would require 14 steps. So the number can differ based upon a number of factors. 

How To Calculate The Number Of Steps In A Flight Of Stairs?

There are quite a few ways to calculate how many steps are in a flight of stairs, but there is one that is generally considered to be easier than the others: 

In order to calculate the number of steps in a flight of stairs, the recommended calculation is to take the overall ceiling height, including the length and width of the wooden beams, as well as the diameter of the subfloors, which are the structures found around the beams. 


Ultimately, the amount of stairs found in a flight of stairs can vary greatly depending on a number of factors involved, but as long as there are no landings, it’s a flight of stairs!

Joel Adams
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