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Old 03-25-2011, 05:01 PM   #1
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


Are footings required for a header? I am replacing a wight bearing wall with a 11 foot header. The header will be made from LDL. The basement floor is concrete. One end of the header will will start from the cinderblock wall but will not be sitting on it. I have one contractor who says yes and another that says no.

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Old 03-25-2011, 06:20 PM   #2
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


For a point load as in support for a post supporting a beam, I would say yes. What's LDL? Did you mean LVL?

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Old 03-25-2011, 06:43 PM   #3
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


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Originally Posted by Jimfuse View Post
Are footings required for a header? I am replacing a wight bearing wall with a 11 foot header. The header will be made from LDL. The basement floor is concrete. One end of the header will will start from the cinderblock wall but will not be sitting on it. I have one contractor who says yes and another that says no.
Concrete floors are not usually made to be capable of supporting weight. If the floor is overloaded, its likely to crack under the strain and then you will have all sorts of problems.
Footings need to be installed where the header posts are placed.

The contractor that says that footings are not required is, in my opinion giving questionable advice.
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Old 03-26-2011, 06:58 AM   #4
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


I agree with "Wildie".
Minimum - 2 foot by 2 foot wide by 2 feet deep concrete, "Pad"/"footing" - under the existing, concrete floor. (Some re-bar would be nice).

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Old 03-26-2011, 06:34 PM   #5
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


It is impossible to say whether footings are needed without knowing what the wall currently supports.

Slabs on grade do have a load carrying capacity, but it is limited at the slab edge. I suspect, however, that if you're removing a portion of wall, that the post would be sitting on top of the existing stem wall and footing rather than the slab.

If it is sitting on the slab, it's a small matter for a structural engineer to give you the carrying capacity, but for only two footings, the engineering is likely worth more than the concrete to add a couple footings. Just make sure they're below the frost level!

As a structural engineer, my greater concern would be how the beam will be framed at the end to provide rotational stability. I have seen beams that were added like this that experienced uneven crushing at the columns and rotated until they were unstable.
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:01 AM   #6
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


Do you actually know how thick the slab is? I would do a footing.
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Old 03-28-2011, 08:58 AM   #7
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


On a typical basement, you never know thick the slab is and in many cases the soil under the slab could settle, creating a void and no soil support.

Either knock a hole in the slab to determine the thickness and soil type or just plan on footings for the columns. No sense in gambling.

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Old 03-28-2011, 12:29 PM   #8
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footings required for a header replacing a weight bearing wall in basement


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On a typical basement, you never know thick the slab is and in many cases the soil under the slab could settle, creating a void and no soil support.

Either knock a hole in the slab to determine the thickness and soil type or just plan on footings for the columns. No sense in gambling.

Dick
In my experience, I'd actually say "most" cases.

The footing is both easy & required IMO, assuming it's carrying any kind of load.

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