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Support beam feedback

Hello all,
I've lived in and have been renovating a 1909 home up here in Canada for the past 13 years. We have got to the stage where a basement reno needs to be done. In the past we haven't spared to much on materials but want to keep the cost of this project down given the times we are in and the fact that we have over capitalized already. Although we may get some return on reno if we ever decide to sell.

Ok to the point. I'm looking for ideas and maybe a pointer to further information on a support beam issue. I will probably bring in an engineer to evaluate also.

We want to open up the space we have but have run into an issue with the 8"x8" solid wood beam not being one piece. As you will see in one of the pictures its lapped and supported by an upright 8x8 set into the poured floor. Now when I reno'ed a room in one corner of the basement 10 years ago I found another 8x8 free swinging as the bottom had rotted out of it. I expect the same has happened to the pictured beam I want to get rid of, but suspect that the wall built sometime in the 60's now taken some of the load of this beam.

I'm looking for a free span from the seen metal telepost to the poured foundation wall (about 12 1/2'). the 2x10 first floor joists are lapped on top of the beam. I'm guessing that a replacement structural beam will be required? Currently there is about a 1 1/2" sag in the 2nd floor but since the main floor was already reno'ed and that I have spent the last 4 years gutting and refinishing the 2nd floor, I have built around and re-hung doors to accommodate.

Ok please excuse this book - I'll provide more detail as required - thanks for your comments.


Re: Support beam feedback

i can't see the metal telepost in your pic but let's go with two scenarios. first, you said you wanted to go with the the 12 1/2' span. if that's the case, ex the telepost, pour a new footing which i'm pretty sure isn't under the telepost and use a concrete filled lally column. then you'll have to use a steel I beam if you want to save headroom. if not, 3 2x12 glue lams should be fine, only catch is that you lose alot of headroom. if you want to go the shorter span, from the wooden post to the concrete foundation you can probably get away with 3 or 4 2x8 glue lams, i'd check with your local building inspector to verify the sizes. if you use something thicker than the 2x8's you would probably have to install another lally column by the foundation wall because it would have to be notched to fit onto the foundation wall. and if you do choose the second option, i would also get rid of the wooden column, pour a new footing and install a lally column there.

as for the slope of the ceiling, when you do all this work you can leave the slope so as to not affect the work you've done upstairs.

Re: Support beam feedback

Thanks for the very constructive feed back. Yes, I think the I beam is the way to go with head room as an issue. Its not a regulation height basement. I'll call in the local inspectors and get some feedback from them. :)

Timothy Miller
Re: Support beam feedback

The ends of the post have suffered water damage due to not being isolated from the masonary. Consider calling some restoration contractors for a bid. They should be able to tell you what type of beam. For long free span steel is the easy answer as it loads more. The wood beams just get too tall for open spans. I'd sure add a 15 ton basemetfloorscrew jack to the end of that beam where it sits in the masonary until you do any other work..

Re: Support beam feedback

Thanks Tim,
There us some sessional movement in the house which I am hoping will be lessend once the new beam and bracing is in effect. I have a couple of people lined up to make an engineering recommendation. I think an RSJ will be the way I will go. Will update as this project progresses.

Thanks for the feedback. :)

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