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Old 12-31-2008, 01:43 PM   #1
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Attic storage - construction type?


I had a question about attic storage and roof construction. I've been reading through the forums trying to get familiar with similar questions but there are a couple of things I'm still fuzzy on. I purchased a home last year that was build in the mid-80's. There is an access hatch above the garage and a previous owner has put down some plywood for flooring for what I assume was additional storage.

I'd like to add some more decking to add a bit more storage but in looking around I see mentions that you shouldn't put any additional weight on one type of constructions (prefab trusses) but it's okay with other types of construction. I'm so new at this, I'm not even sure what I've got. I've taken some pictures (link below) of the area for reference and I'd really appreciate any feedback someone could give me. Having lived in apartments most of the time, I'm a bit new to home projects.

I've also read several post where there is mention of not putting "too much" weight or "light" storage. How light is light? Is 50lb worth of stuff going to bring the ceiling in the garage down or can a couple of hundred pounds (spread out) be okay?

Thanks.
Tim Bergin

P.S.
I'm new to the forum so let me know if I I've forget to include something or should have posted pictures differently.

Pic links:
Picture 1
Picture 2
Picture 3
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Old 12-31-2008, 06:18 PM   #2
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Attic storage - construction type?


You can usually add quite a bit of "storage" without overloading most house framing or trusses. Stick built framing is usually easy to add plywood flooring(max 1/2"), but not recommended above living spaces. That is because, today, that space needs to be taken up with insulation. Heating/cooling costs have become so high, that it is cost prohibitive to reduce insulation for storage above a living space.

In a garage attic, that is not an issue. How much storage is usually not an issue for most families, boxes of stuff, old toys, etc, should not be a problem. If you want to store an old car up there, that might be an issue. A rough rule of thumb, if you can fit the plywood up there, it is OK for storage.
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Old 12-31-2008, 07:48 PM   #3
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Attic storage - construction type?


That is stick framing and NOT trusses.

Dude,,,where is your insulation?? Plase tell me this is ONLY the top sid of the garage ceiling and the house part is well insulated,,,otherwise spend your money on insulation,,,then worry about storage up there!! first things first!!
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Old 12-31-2008, 08:30 PM   #4
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Attic storage - construction type?


You can place some plywood up there for LIGHT storage. How much weight the ceiling is capable of taking is dependent on the ceiling joists' span. Don't store grandpa's rock collection up there and you'll be fine in most cases! Installing floor sheathing to create living space in the attic requires a much more thorough review.
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Old 01-01-2009, 04:33 PM   #5
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Attic storage - construction type?


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Originally Posted by 4just1don View Post
That is stick framing and NOT trusses.

Dude,,,where is your insulation?? Plase tell me this is ONLY the top sid of the garage ceiling and the house part is well insulated,,,otherwise spend your money on insulation,,,then worry about storage up there!! first things first!!
These pictures are for the area above the garage, although you can see some of the old insulation on the wall up there that abuts the 2nd floor bathroom. Replacing that insulation, which I'm assuming is 20 years old, is tops on my list. I'll probably have many other questions about replacing insulation coming up pretty soon. Surprisingly, our energy costs aren't that bad this time of year though. It doesn't usually get that cold very often around here.

Thanks for the feedback!
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