Joists have different height




Last Updated February 19, 2016 01:09 AM

I'm first time homeowner and bought a house (built in 1999) in fall of 2015 (Philadelphia suburb). During inspection of the house I noticed squeaky floors and inspector said its due to nails rubbing against the joist making the noise and its minor issue.

The other day I was in the basement (unfinished) to check floor sections which squeaked the most. Just out of curiosity I put 4 feet level at the bottom of the joists (across joists) and to my surprise there were gap between joists and the level (for the most joists I checked) - it range from 1/8 to 1/2. I don't see any sag on length of the joists but level is off across the joists. Joists are resting on sill plate and its in good condition (no rotting or anything). Joists are 2X10 (not engineered joist) and they do not span more than 16 feet. To me it seems like joists are of different height/depth. When you look at the cross section of the joist - it appears...

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This is probably just a sign of low quality construction, but nothing to worry about. A 2x10 over a 16' span will commonly have some cupping where it is bent slightly in one direction. With a long level, a slight difference between two boards may be magnified depending on how you hold the level, so I'd only be surprised by a 1/2" difference if that's between two other joists, rather than one of the ends of the level. You may also need to account for load from furniture above which may be deflecting some joists.

A better quality builder is going to do two things that will make this less visible. First, they'd use glue and screws. They take longer to install, but the result is no squeaking. Nails are faster to install, and that time is money for the builders. Second, the builder is going to check each of the joists for cupping before installing, avoid using the worst joists, and make sure all the cups are facing the same direction, up in the middle. They may even install wood...

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The answer to your question is yes, you can drop the joist lower into the basement via different means depending on construction method.

Although typically in most basements the joist do not hang inside the foundation wall; they either sit on top of framed basement walls which can be easily lowered in height given basement walls typically have every stud cut to reconcile an uneven floor; or they sit on top of the foundation wall and the foundation wall would need dropped in the area of the deeper joist.

As a general rule, we avoid supporting things by ledgers if we have the option of sitting on top of something.

Another option that may not be of much expense is to raise the depth of the other joist to 11-7/8"; a plus is using a minimum strength 11-7/8" I-joist would give you a very stiff floor compared to the 2x10's. It would also simplify the framing a bit to have a cohesive floor depth throughout the main...

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I remember the first time I saw engineered I joists used in a job here in Cincinnati. I would be willing to bet $500 that it was in the late 1970's. They were the floor joist components of a mini-condominium project. One of the condo units was half finished and the owner had abandoned the project. I was considering purchasing the condo to finish it out for resale. I didn't buy the condo - the reason had nothing to do with the floor joists although I must admit I had my reservations about the seemingly undersized structural material!

Think Steel

The next time you pass buy a commercial building under construction or you can view a traditional I beam up close, I want you to really look at the way one of those is made. Look at how thin the steel web or center portion of the beam actually is. Often they are just slightly thicker than 1/4 inch! I then want you to imagine how much weight one of these single beams can carry. Note that the beams don't have to be 1.5...

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If your plan contains different floor or ceiling heights and you want to include Ceiling Joists or Floor Joists then you need to understand how to use Levels.

A Level controls two different aspects for Joists. It controls the Height of the Joist and the Elevation (Offset) of the Joist.

The default Height for Floor Joists will be the height defined in Drawing Options-->Drawing Options-->Material Dimensions-->Floor System Options.

The default Height for Ceiling Joist will be the height defined in Drawing Options-->Drawing Options-->Material Dimensions-->Ceiling Options.

When you draw a Joist or Joist Set it is automatically assigned to Level 1 and given the default height. If you were to edit a joist in Level 1 and change the height or offset you change the height and offset of all other joists that belong to that same Level.

As an example let's assume that you have a floor system that has a portion that is raised up 1' above the rest of the floor....

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AASHTO (American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials) A regulatory organization which governs the design and specifications of highway bridges. Accessories Are extra items that can be furnished in addition to the base joist or joist girder. They include: headers, top chord extensions, extended ends, ceiling extensions, bottom chord extensions, sloped end bearings, bridging, bridging anchors, joist girder bottom chord bracing, or angle units (joist substitutes). ADL Abbrevation for 'After Dead Load is Applied'. Aesthetic Having the sense of beauty or pleasing to the eye. AFF Abbrevation for 'Above Finish Floor'. AGA (American Galvanizers Association) A non-profit association representing the post-fabrication hot-dip galvanizing industry. AGCA (Associated General Contractors of America) Is a national trade organization of qualified...
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Large Views of Short Shed Plans

8x8 Gambrel Shed That Is 8' Tall

8x8 Gable Shed With 8' Overall Height

8x16 Gable Shed With 8' Overall Height

6x8 Lean To Shed With 8' Or Less Height

4x8 Lean To Shed With 8' Or Less Height

Where Are Short Shed Plans Used?

Many building departments and home owners associations, HOA, require a storage shed height of 8 feet or less or 6 feet or less. The Short Shed Plans are designed to meet this building requirement. Shortening the overall height of the shed can be done in several way, either used independently or together.

Steel Stud Foundation: Building the floor using steel studs that sit directly on top of a gravel base. This allows the shed to be built without a wood rail foundation which lowers the shed height by 5 1/2 inches.

Reducing the roof slope to 2 in 12: Lowering the roof slope is a great way to reduce the overall height of...

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