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Old 04-14-2013, 05:39 PM   #1
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Lvl beam


Hello I am building a patio cover and need an lvl beam that can span a 20 ft length and hold a trussed roof with a load of 30 psf. I was thinking a 3/1/2 x 14 inch beam. Is this good, overkill, or not good enough? Thanks

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Old 04-14-2013, 05:53 PM   #2
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Lvl beam


How big are the trusses?

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Old 04-14-2013, 06:01 PM   #3
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Lvl beam


Your are essentially asking someone to size a beam for a building they will never see. No one legally qualified to perform such a computation would be foolish enough to do so. I recommend you take your project to the lumberyard that will supply the beam. They may be willing to size the beam for you as part of the cost of supplying the beam, and may even supply a PE stamp on the drawings so you can pull a permit.
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Old 04-14-2013, 06:04 PM   #4
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Lvl beam


a lot more information goes into selecting a beam than just the span. one would need to account for all of the loads the beam must support. if you are using trusses for the roof then the truss manufacturer should be able to provide you with the size of beam you'd need.

just be aware LVL beams are not intended for exposure to the weather ....
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:49 AM   #5
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Lvl beam


I've done this many times. 1) Will this beam be exposed to rain/dampness? IF so, then an ordinary LVL beam will not do for a wet/damp location. PT LVL beams are available but very pricey. 2) Others are correct in that no one on this site should be stating which size beam to use without other pertinent information. I use a locally owned builder supply house with will contact their LVL beam supplier when I bring in a proper sketch, and sizing of all trusses to be held up by the beam. Then the supplier will recommend the proper sized beam for me. They have not failed me yet. I did one, and only one, job in where the beam would be exposed to rain and only with the homeowner understanding that the beam would have to be re-coated annually. We used a full five (5) gallons of Linseed oil on the twenty-two (22) foot beam before doing anything with it. Fortunately this is a friend of mine and when I vist I always inspect the beam. It's been five (5) years now and it still looks as if new.
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:14 AM   #6
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preservative treated parallams can be used for weather exposed locations. parallams are an engineered wood product similar to a LVL

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