How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask StructuralEng Your Own Question
StructuralEng, Consultant
Category: Structural Engineering
Satisfied Customers: 7258
Experience:  Structural Engineer
Type Your Structural Engineering Question Here...
StructuralEng is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

What size beam would I need to replace a load bearing wall

Resolved Question:

What size beam would I need to replace a load bearing wall that expand 13 feet of a first level of a two story home. We have 2x10 floor joist that are 16 inch centers and they expand 16 Feet
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Structural Engineering
Expert:  StructuralEng replied 5 years ago.

StructuralEng : Hi
StructuralEng : I can help
StructuralEng : Let me read closer



I need to know what will pass inspection on the over kill side we have a tough inspector

StructuralEng : Are the joists 16' long on each side?
StructuralEng : Its supporting two floors?
StructuralEng : You want steel or engineers lumber?

no this is a beam that will support a load bearing wall that sits half way between




are you there

StructuralEng : Yes I'm here
StructuralEng : Reading

ok so from where the beam will sit is 5'4 " from where the floor joist hang from the main support beam

StructuralEng : Te way the question reads is that the beam is 13' long an te joists it supports are 16' long. Is that true?

yes the beam will run a distance of 13 feet and the floor joist its going to support run 16 feet


it will carry 11 floor joist that run 16 Feet

StructuralEng : Great. And it's supporting one floor or two?

one floor


we have a two story home and it wil be supporting the second floor of the two story home

StructuralEng : Ok.
StructuralEng : Ill size an LVL. Give me a few minutes

the beam under the house that carrys the whole first level and second level that the down pressure beams will be sitting over is a 4x10

StructuralEng : You can use a 5-1/4" x 14" Versa-Lam 2.0 3100 by Boise Cascade.
StructuralEng : If you've found my answer helpful, please click the green "accept" button. I'll be happy to answer additional questions on the topic. If you could provide feedback, I would appreciate it.

so would a 4 x 6 x 13 work that is not laminated

StructuralEng : I held total load deflection to L/480.
StructuralEng : A 4x6? No. That's not even close to the size I losted
StructuralEng : Listed

ok let me explain we have a 4 inch wide by 10 inches high and 13 feet long so you are saying that will not work

StructuralEng : No, definitely not. Engineered lumber has better properties and is still larger.

are you saying i need a 6 inch wide by 14 inches thick and 13 feet long

StructuralEng : If you go to dimension lumber, the properties get worse, so you need a bigger section, not a smaller one

are you saying a laminated 6x10 beam would work

StructuralEng : I listed the size above. It's engineered lumber, not dimension lumber. It's an LVL. It needs to be 5-1/4" wide and 14" deep x the 13' long
StructuralEng : No, a 6x10 will not work.
StructuralEng : A 6x10 is dimension lumber, it would need to be bigger than the LVl, not smaller

so can you explain to me why a they used a 6x 10 laminated beam to carry a load that has 16 foot floor joist hanging off both sides of it.


Why would I need to go with a 6x14 that is sitting in the middle of a 16 foot floor joist

StructuralEng : Are you saying its supporting a single 16' joist? Only8' on each side?
StructuralEng : Earlier you said 16' on each side. Which is correct?

They both run the same distance with no support in the middle but the one that is already in there is carrying double the load and it is smaller than what you recommend


This beam will sit in the middle of the floor joist but eleven floor joist will run accrossed it they will not hang on it


8 ' feet on each side but eleven total joist running acrossed it

StructuralEng : A lot of way gets done in residential construction does not check out if you run the numbers. There are a lot of reasons that it stands up, none of which I can use to justify a deain that doesn't work on paper
StructuralEng : Let me resize for the 8' on each side. Are we sure this is right now? 8' on each side of the beam and supporting one slope only?
StructuralEng : Floor, not slope

yes it is supporting one floor only and yes it has 8' on each side of the beam and a total numbe of floor joist that will run acrossed it is 11 total floor joist


none of them will be in hangers off the side this beam is for per support that is replacing a load bearing wall


does that help

StructuralEng : 5-1/4" x 11-7/8" LVL
StructuralEng : Thats what you need. If you've found my answer helpful, please click the green "accept" button

so this will pass inspection


What kind of supports should we use

StructuralEng : It works on paper, so it has to.
StructuralEng : I would use 4x4's Doug-Fir Larch No. 2.

so not a 6 x 4

StructuralEng : You can use a 4x6, but a 4c4 is a minimum
StructuralEng : 4x4, not 4c4

ok cool


Thank you very much

StructuralEng : I hope this has been helpful
StructuralEng : No problem. Best of luck with your project

yes it has do you know of any websites to have plans drawn up that is reasonable in cost


like a website for me to draw my own plans up



StructuralEng : Not really. Do you need plans? If the township wants plans, they typically want them signed and sealed

yes I need plans


do you have any recommendations that will not cost me a fortune

StructuralEng : Do they have to be done in CAD? Do they have to be signed and sealed?

I live in Washington State


do you know where i could get this beam locally


no I do not believe so

StructuralEng : Can you draw it by hand?

no but I would like to purchase a program that helps me do it

StructuralEng : I don't know I any other than autocad?

This website is one that will help me draw up plans


I can draw it by hand but would need some guidence

StructuralEng :

Which website?


I am not an engineer but a contracter






so this cost me 45.00 correct to get your answer

StructuralEng :

Correct, but I don't get credited until you click the green accept button.

StructuralEng :

Do you have any other questions for me?

StructuralEng and other Structural Engineering Specialists are ready to help you