I have been doing a lot of work on my house lately and was thinking about adding on a 2 story area. The bottom would be a 3 car garage and the top would be a bedroom. My question is, what are the framing requirements for a 2 story structure. I have seen the foundation requirements but I have to think that a two story would require beefed up framing do to load on the walls.
In general 2x4 on 16" centers is ok for a standard second story. But, local codes determine the results. Here in California we have special rules because sometimes the ground moves. In Florida they have special requirements because they get these very stong wind from time to time. In the far north there is the requirement for snow load. Also you might want to go to 2x6 just to get the lnsulation inprovements of a 6 inch space.
So it is very hard to give an answer that will fit your needs without knowing a lot more. A simple call to the local building department might be all it takes. Explane that your are in the process of early planning, they will have to sign off the plans at some point anyway, so it will save time and money getting their input early.
The bigger question is the foundation. If you have a home built a number of years ago it might not meet the requirements for a second story. Here in California that may be the biggest issue. The new codes require major structural supports and ties between the foundation and the walls.
>In general 2x4 on 16" centers is ok for a standard second
>story. But, local codes determine the results. Here in
Lou, I hear the codes require 2x6 studs now in new construction, but that might be variable by area etc.
The idea of the 2x6 was to add more wall insulation for energy efficiency and it's been my understanding the last few years that the old standard 2x4 wall is "out"
Mat and I are in California. We don't have quite the need for insulation that you fokes in the snow areas have. They still build them out here with 2x4's last I checked. But, it I were doing it I would go 2x6 and insulate like crazy.
In the Chicago area 2x6 walls are unheard of. There may be some bulders using them, but most would laugh at you if you asked for walls that thick. Some kids in my family have their own construction companies, and build homes from $250k to $500k, not one has anything more than a 2x4 exterior wall. They will sometimes use 2x6 for the load bearing wall above the ibeam, to allow for larger heat ducts.
>The bigger question is the foundation. If you have a home
>built a number of years ago it might not meet the
>requirements for a second story. Here in California that
Well he's an end of driveway photo of mine :)
It was built in May 1930, 2 bedroom, basement on 31 acres and the owner died in Sept 1930 leaving behind his widow who lost the house 12 years later at age 68 to a sheriff's foreclosure auction.
A month later the buyer resold it for a $600 profit to the people who lived here till the 1990s, they sold off parts of the 31 arces over the years so only 1/2 acre is left.
I snapped it up from a couple who bought it from their son and only lived here 2 years.
Folks would croak to know I bought the house 4 years ago for under 9 Grand and that it had been on the market a year:)
Anyway, my foundation I don't know if it was put in in 1930 or later, just doesnt "look" real old, it's poured concrete 13" thick and above ground level they used concrete blocks.
The kitchen 12' x18' was added on later, maybe 1940s the walls are plaster/lathe so it wouldn't be much later than that. It was originally a large back porch and had only a crawl space, I dug that out over last summer tho.
The um "foundation" they used for that was 14"x14"x8' wood beams that may have come from the old railroad depot, they laid these on flat stones and put sheet metal on the outside to below grade. Was a joy to cut a window out thru that...
When I finish digging the last 1/3 of the area out next spring Ill be putting in a block foundation wall under those 14" beams.
They have a small amount of rot in the center but for the most part are solid wood, looks like almost if not clear yellow pine, drilling into one for the window I could smell pretty fragrant pine smell even after all these decades :)
The laughable thing is they used those huge beams on one end of the kitchen floor joists and then just nailed a 2x6 cleat to the existing 6x6 beam on top of the block foundation, to support the other ends of the floor joists. Some of the joists are huge, like 4" by 12" and then some are barely 2x4's, guess they used whatever was handy!
A main support joist in the basement was designed poorly, it's about 16' long and is only about 5" wide by maybe 6" or 7" deep, notched all along on one side for toes of floor joists that fit in at a 90 degree angle for that side of the house.
There is a plaster/lathe wall directly above it perpendicular to it and that holds up one end of all the roof rafters on that side of the T shaped house.
As far as I can tell there was never any center post support till it cracked and sagged.
When I moved in that joist had rot on both ends where it rested on the block foundation directly, a split and sag and was held up with a 3x5 post resting on a brick on the dirt floor.
It had sagged I figured from the angle of the top of the livingroom doorway about 4 to 5 inches in the middle and had sagged so far it started to crack the concrete block on one end it was resting on by pulling it downward at about a 45 degree angle as it sagged.
First thing I did was I jacked that sucker up and dug a pit, filled it with crushed rock then poured about a 2 foot square by 8 or 9" thick hunk of concrete and then built a concrete block column.
I jacked the beam up a bit more, floor still isn't level but satisfactory, it could still go up another inch but I won't push it, the knee wall I added upstairs would raise the roof in that area if I go more.
Now the center of the joist rests on a 6" steel channel which rests on saddle I made for the top of the column by bolting and welding (2 ) sets of (2) 6" channel back to back to form (2) I beams. I used an old 1/4" thick steel plate on top of those. I also left the screw jacks in place and plan to wall it all in later.
Later I added a 6" channel, flat, with 4 screw jack columns under all of the joists that toe into that main one and took a fair amount of their weight off that one joist as well as helped to raise/level them.
Overkill maybe but better safe than sorry.