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Old 12-19-2013, 02:14 PM   #1
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Concerning weight limits...


Don't know if this would be the right place for this question. Sry
I am getting a new aquarium. It is 72 inches long and 24 inches wide. It holds 180 gal of water. With that, plus extra equipment, stand, sump tank, etc. it's going to weigh on the up side of 2200 pounds... Should i double (or triple) the floor joists or would the single 2x6 joists be able to support it? Any advice would be most appreciated.

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Old 12-19-2013, 02:40 PM   #2
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Concerning weight limits...


Hm. That's about 180 psf. I'll say...no (a residential room is 30-40 psf by default)

But, honestly, is it in the middle of the room? Hell no. Is it up against a wall that's perpendicular to the floor joists? Maybe, but I'd be nervous.

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Old 12-19-2013, 03:07 PM   #3
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Concerning weight limits...


It's def going to be against a wall. The joists unfortunately would be running parallel, but there would be a steel support beam under part of it that would run perpendicular. If i doubled up the joist would it be ok? And now that i think about it, i believe the joists are either 2x8 or 2x10 because that section is about 16 ft long. :/ the more i think about it the less i think it will work. Any ideas???
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Old 12-19-2013, 03:23 PM   #4
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Concerning weight limits...


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Originally Posted by Carnifex View Post
It's def going to be against a wall. The joists unfortunately would be running parallel, but there would be a steel support beam under part of it that would run perpendicular. If i doubled up the joist would it be ok? And now that i think about it, i believe the joists are either 2x8 or 2x10 because that section is about 16 ft long. :/ the more i think about it the less i think it will work. Any ideas???
Honestly, design load calculations can't be done with just one or two bits of information. At a minimum, you need joist span, depth and spacing. You also need lumber species and grade. That's usually all you need for uniformly distributed loads. Your situation is not that. And in addition, you're now talking about a steel beam running somewhere underneath the area. There goes any chance of getting any sort of dependable answer on the internet. Basically, this needs to be analyzed by someone who can take every detail of your situation into account.

Last edited by cortell; 12-19-2013 at 04:00 PM.
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:30 PM   #5
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Concerning weight limits...


^ what he said ....
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:35 PM   #6
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Concerning weight limits...


Contact a local structural engineer.
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:58 PM   #7
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Concerning weight limits...


Perhaps the literature accompanying the aquarium will provide some information about how it should be supported.

You mention "that section" being 16 feet long. Does that mean the unsupported span of the joists is 16 feet, or are they supported somewhere in/near the middle. If they are not, 2x8s would be probably be overspanned. In my house, the joists have an unsupported span of 16 ft, 2 inches in the kitchen area. Per the plans, they are 2x10s placed 12 inches on center instead of 16 inches as in the rest of the first floor. And those in the main traffic area are doubled up. Needless to say, my floors don't bounce or squeak.
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Old 12-19-2013, 06:27 PM   #8
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Concerning weight limits...


The question of how best to support an aquarium has come up several times on this forum in the last few years, along with related questions like how to support a hot tub etc. The proper way to analyze the problem is to treat the aquarium as a point load rather than a distributed load, or possibly four point loads if it is supported on a stand with four legs. As has been noted by others, point load analysis requires accurate information about the size of joists, the spacing, the span of the joists, and the exact positioning of the aquarium with respect to the joists and beams. Not a good topic for an internet chat forum like this.

No doubt it seems like gross overkill to pay an engineer to compute the load on your floor to see if the joists, beams and flooring are sufficiently strong to support the aquarium. Course the flip side is how much is it going to cost if the aquarium falls through the floor, floods the house, and kills all your fish? And perhaps injures someone standing below?

As was mentioned previously, the aquarium manufacturer may have some suggestions as to how to strengthen your framing to support their equipment. Or your building inspector may be willing to discuss the project with you. Or a local lumberyard (NOT a big box store, a real lumberyard) may have an on call engineer who can give you a definitive answer. But soliciting recommendations over the internet, and then using that recommendation, bad idea.

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