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Old 02-12-2010, 10:02 PM   #1
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question about joists and ledger


my house is 3 years old. i was running some cable in the basement the other day and i noticed a small gap (1/8"-1/4") between my 2x4 ledger strip and my floor joists. some friends suggested i buy some shims and place them in the gap to shore up the support for my floor joists. my question is....should the shims be tapped snuggly/firmly into place so the shims will not move or insert the shims so they are not loose per se, but not quite as snug. seems to me since there is so much weight from teh joist/house that i should insert them so they are nice and tight. the 2 x4 ledger board was nailed with a nail gun under each joist with 3 nails. i hope this makes sense...thanks

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Old 02-12-2010, 10:36 PM   #2
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question about joists and ledger


yes, it makes sense.
chances are that 'bought' shims would be cedar and are too soft for this application.
consider cutting your own shims from Fir or Oak or another suitable wood.
if you cut them tapered, use 2 shims. one from each side so the bearing point stays flat.
use full 1 1/2 inch material to match the original bearing surface area.

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Old 02-13-2010, 08:17 AM   #3
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question about joists and ledger


when i out them under teh joist from each side like you suggest do i push the shims together until i can no longer push them together firmly or just push them under the joist until there is just a little resistance?
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Old 02-13-2010, 12:49 PM   #4
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question about joists and ledger


a little tap with a hammer will do it. just snug them up.
a drop of glue won't hurt either. I assume space would limit nailing, but if you have a brad gun, pop one in there to hold the shims.
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Old 02-13-2010, 01:43 PM   #5
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question about joists and ledger


Are you sure this is the ledger that holds up your floor joist? sounds more like the plate for your basement furring wall. Do your joist fun out to the edge of the foundation? A 2x4 ledger would not hold a floor system is why im asking. If it is not the bearing point for the floor system that gap is there so that the floor does not bear on the basement floor shimming it would be bad news as you would be shifting bearing point to your slab. Can you take a pic?
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