Join us to get great money-saving tips, cool ideas, and valuable advice from home improvement expert Don Vandervort! An essential part of planning a patio roof or gazebo project is determining the number, size, and spacing of rafters, beams, and posts, according to the loads they will carry.
In areas with mild climates, patio roofs are generally designed for loads of 30 psf pounds per square foot. For heavy roofs or in areas with substantial snowfall or winds, call your local building department for code requirements. The tables below give maximum spans for rafters and beams.
The figures are based on quality materials. For lesser grades, spans should be shorter.
Keep in mind that these are maximums—in other words, shortening spans slightly will result in a more solid structure. Find out the loads your overhead must bear, and then determine the rafter sizes. Next, calculate beam placements and how best to coordinate them with the rafters. Keep in mind that these are minimums for the spacing indicated—you can select larger sizes to handle excessive loads or for appearance. Of course, beefier sizes also increase your lumber bill.
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How often? Only every month or two. Unsubscribe anytime! August 24, This post may contain affiliate links. For more information see our disclosures here.The span of a beam is dependent on a few variables. The species of lumber, size of lumber and the load it carries. Fewer posts on upper level decks are typically more desirable to the occupants and this drives the use of larger framing materials for longer spans.
Beam span maximums are based on a maximum anticipated live load. Building codes for residential decks only require 40 psf. The longer the joist, the more area of deck the joist supports, and thus the beam supports.
For pressure-preservative-treated southern pine no.
When supporting joists that span 12 feet with no overhang beyond the beam, a double ply beam can span in feet a value equal to its depth in inches. A double 2x12 beam can span 12 feet; a 2 2x10 can span 10 feet and so on. The numbers in gray indicate the distance between the support posts.
Numbers in blue are joist spans beam to beam or house to beam. In the article, it is stated that a 12' joist span corresponds to the double beam span a length equal to the 2x width; however, this seems to match the 6' joist span column of the table. Can you clarify?
One side is attached to the exterior wall of the home and the other side is supported by five 6 x 6 treated posts. Can I create my own beam by nailing a treated 2x10 on either side of the posts to carry the load and then remove the three middle posts? What is the maximum span with the method I am suggesting? There are a lot of variables to consider when sizing a supporting beam for a porch roof or any area in your home where a load must be carried.
While I know your idea seems logical and it might work, consulting with an architect or engineer is the only way to know for sure. The sizes of your porch roof framing members, their spacing, the type of roofing material, and even the average snow load for your locale are items that must be figured into the equation.
Even though a 2 x 10 is very substantial, your method will actually have the fasteners used carrying the weight of the porch. Over time those nails or lag bolts could loosen and suddenly you have a sagging porch. The way the porch roof is currently framed, each of those 6 x 6 posts is carrying part of the roof load. I have no doubt that there is a way to adjust the framing so that a few of the supporting posts can be removed. Microllam beams are available in numerous sizes and can span large distances.
The beams can then be boxed in much as you had planned to do with the 2 x 10s. Flitch plates are another option. A flitch plate is a metal plate sandwiched between two framing members such as 2 x 10s. The metal thickness is based on the width of the space to be spanned.
Metal beams could also be used and would eliminate the need for most of the supporting posts across the front of your porch. They also can be boxed in with wood after installation.
Of course, all of these solutions are a little more expensive than simply nailing 2 x 10s to the sides of your existing posts. Microllams would probably be the least expensive option depending on the size needed and they can be purchased at many lumberyards. However, before you start shopping for any of these beams, the first thing you need to do is meet with an engineer or architect to get the proper sizing.
You don't want the roof to collapse - especially when someone happens to be sitting on the back porch.Use the span tables below to determine allowable lengths of joists and rafters, based on size and standard design loads. You can also use the Wood Beam Calculator from the American Wood Council website to determine maximum rafter and joist lengths. For example, you can span a 1 grade no knots southern yellow pine a greater distance than a 2 grade with knots southern yellow pine.
The 1 grade material is more expensive than the 2 grade, but if you can use fewer or smaller 1 grade joists or rafters in your design, you may actually save money.
Rafter spans can be extended slightly beyond what the rafter tables suggest, when there is a cantelever extending beyond the supporting wall. Ceiling Joist Span Use this table to determine the maximum lengths of ceiling joists based on species of lumber, joist spacing, and joist size.
Floor Joist Span Use this table to determine the maximum lengths of floor joists based on species of lumber, joist spacing, and joist size. Roof Rafter Span Use this table to determine the maximum lengths of roof rafters based on species and grade of lumber, spacing, dimensions, load, and slope. Leave span tables and visit our home page.
The Deck Beam Span Table on this page makes it easy to determine how far apart your posts and therefore the span of the beam should be. If you have seen the Deck Joist Span Tableyou already understand the relationship between joist span and joist spacing.
The closer you space joists, the longer you can span joists — up to a point. For determining beam spans distance a beam can span between supporting postsconsider the following concept. The more weight, or the longer the supported length of joist that a beam must carry, the shorter the span of the beam — for a particular size of beam.
Determine the length of the joist actually supported by the beam.
Patio Roof Maximum Beam & Rafter Spans
This distance is half the distance to the next beam in either direction. If a joist is attached from a ledger to a beam, then the distance is the midway point between the supported ends either a ledger or beam of the joist plus any cantilevered portion of the joist past the beam. It makes sense if you think about it. If a joist spans between two beams or a beam and a ledger, each beam or ledger supports half of the joist. The length of joist span actually supported by a beam is what determines the force that bears upon that beam and therefore the distance that a given size of beam can span before another post is required to support that beam.
Refer to the Deck Beam Span Table below to assist in determining the maximum span of a given beam between posts. Obviously, the larger the beam, the greater the distance it can span between posts. A Redwood 4x6 beam should span no more than 6' between supporting posts. Why Sign Up? Read Archives. I am looking to install privacy screens on my concrete patio. I just want to put up two 6x6 posts with Titan Wood Post Anchors, either 35 or 70 apart.
Read More. I am building a 10'x12'deck not attached to a ledger board. My plan was to pour concrete footings, then run doubled up 2x8 beams setting on the footings. My wife is a stroke victim, and she wants this deck to be as easy as possible for her to walk out on. She would like it to be as high as possible, with.
Concrete Volumes. Beam Spans. Joist Spans. Unit Conversions. Hidden Fastener Rail Connectors. Product of the Month. Beginner's Guide Post Anchor Install. Sign in. Why DecksGo. Titan Post Anchor Installation. How to Install the Snap 'n Lock System. Ground Level Decks. Multi Level Decks. Covered Decks.Maybe academics think overt "optimism" or "pessimism" is unseemly or unprofessorial. But it also runs contrary to empirical evidence. Stocks historically rise more than fall. Stocks historically do pretty well in the long term compared to cash or bonds, but in a widely varying path.
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