Replacing load bearing wall with steel I-Beam

Old 02-18-14, 06:15 PM
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Replacing load bearing wall with steel I-Beam

I have a raised bungalow. Currently in the basement there is a wall that basically stretches the entire house down the centre. I would like to remove a portion of this wall (20') to make for a larger living space. I had a contractor in who took measurements and had a structural engineer determine what size beam would be necessary to span that distance and carry the load. The contracted said that footings would be necessary under the jack posts at either end of the beam and he said that it is best to keep the footings out 3 feet from the exterior wall so that I don't damage the footings of the house.

Because it is a raised bungalow, my foundation wall only comes up 4' or so from the floor. My question is this: Am I able to support the I-Beam on the foundation? Obviously I will need to have a jack (wood or steel) between the I-Beam and the foundation wall, but this would eliminate the need for me to come out 3' from the wall with a jack post.

Any advice is appreciated.
Old 02-18-14, 09:23 PM
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Not knowing what your foundation consists of makes it hard to say exactly. The column for the beam should probably go NEXT to the foundation, all the way to the floor, as the contractor said, the columns will need a footing. I can't see how that work would possibly damage the house footing.

I am just theorizing, but I bet that part of the reason for moving the columns in 3 ft is maybe shorten the span of the beam to keep it's size and weight down.

If it was my house, I wouldn't want columns 3 ft from the walls either. Sounds like a stupid idea. Sorry, didn't mean to say that out loud.

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