humidity and stair construction

Hi all, I have contracted with a builder to construct some open riser stairs from ash in my home here in Maine. He keeps delaying construction and I am worried that further delay into the humid summer will result in squeeking stairs when the air dries out in winter. Are my concerns justified?
Thanks for your thoughts.
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IMO sorta... I think you will have movement no matter the season you build the stairs. If you build in the winter with dry heat the material will still swell in the humid summer. I think it's one of those "six of one... half a dozen of the other" situations. Another thing I might mention since you said you were going to have open risers...... be sure, if you have local codes, that your inspector will buy open risers. The IRC (International Residential Code), used by many municipalities for guidelines on stairway construction, does not support open riser construction on interior stair systems. There is an exception if you add a piece (across where the normal riser would be) to split the open area normally covered by the riser. You may also be able to get a variance from your local authority if you have one.
Mike O.
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Nick, Never found a set of stairs that over time did not squeak. To slow the process wrap the top of the stringers with a single layer of felt tar paper. May smell for a short while, but reduces the rubbing of wood against wood. The back side of the run may still run against the stringer if not treated as well.
Paul

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