Steel I beam support

Could I get some advice on this? Is this a major or material defect? Nothing throughout the inspection indicates the home has structural issues. How would or should the homeowner have this repaired?

Permits and engineering? “A large scale repair or modification of the house has taken place at the XXX. It is recommended that the buyer obtain the related engineering and permits to ensure a proper design and implementation. Aside from the obvious modification, no indication of any problem was noted.”

Cut it twice still too short. The bent over nails are a nice touch too.


Could be original construction? No?

My concern is that the beam is not load bearing across the span of the support post and the beam attachment is inadequate. Time for an SE in my opinion.

Yeah, the part of my post you chopped off said that.

As we say KISS :kiss: :sunglasses:

Morning, Jeffery.
Yes & No. ​
Look at the items in question. A: Site built build-up column. B: Factory manufactured Steel Beam or Girder. Bearing is still 1.5" inches is it not?
Observation: Poorly secured Steel Beam on Build-up Column. Chance for beam rotation or horizontal movement.
Recommend: A licensed general contractor properly secure the beam to the column.
Hope that helps.

Robert, When dealing with window and door headers, the span determines the number of jack studs beneath it. Wouldn’t the same apply to the beam? Seems to me it should have full bearing.
Could be that it was required to have two, the opening was figured wrong and the added “jacks” were put in to give the bearing required. I know that is second guessing. Just thinking it through some.
Best to pass it on to someone that can determine that.

No. Beam take up the load.
As for window headers, the header takes up the load.

Remember, this is not a door or window opening. The span is for floor assembly. Window openings are bearing above wall framing. Door opening spans are limited in length and load.

Beam bearing limits. ‘most building codes specify a minimum bearing length of 1.5 inches on wood or metal and not less than 3 inches on masonry or concrete.’ In your case there is a wood build-up column. The steel beam rests on the column ><3" inches.

The beam/girder is not properly secured/fastened to the column.

Too many unknowns at this point. Need the beam span, loading, bearing at other end, what supports the wood column at the bottom and so on. That picture is just one piece of the whole picture. It’s easy to get tunnel vision when you focus on one spot.


Always the same problem, Randy, they focus on one little thing, because they don’t see the whole picture, so we are left guessing.

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Randy, I see a steel beam not secured to the column properly.
Simple recommendation. A licensed general contactor evalaute and secure the steel beam to the wood column. Simple refer.

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This needs to be evaluated by a structural engineer, and checked against the permits registered for construction or renovation for the property.

What does that white label stuck to the beam read? Is there a date? How does that date compare to public records for the home? Was this done in the initial build, or with permits?

You might also refer your clients to the seismic hazard map for your area in Colorado.
If this were in my area, and my local building inspectors saw it, I’d give it 8/10 they’d red tag the building and prohibit occupancy, based on shaking concerns. Your mileage may vary.

Icebergs have tips. The inadequately secured beam (for quake hazard zones) may be just the tip.

There is adequate bearing on the 2x’s per code. The studs are tied together. The bent nails at the top are how its done commonly. Without more info based just on the pics its likely adequate, BUT not enough info to make a 100% statement of … Its OK

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given that photo I’m not seeing a problem…

I would disagree with that, Dan. That is not the standard for the industry and more information would be required before we should say it is adequate.
I found that the beam came from Nu Steel Supply LLC according to the label and is 15’-10" long.
But I would still stick with what Randy posted above.


Marcel …

Not sure what you’re saying, BUT on a walk-out basement with a full height front concrete wall, step down concrete sides with various height wood cripple walls, and the back wall a wood framed wall … A steel I-beam or Wood Girder at the rear setting on ganged studs is common and acceptable. The OP’s pic shows 4 ganged studs with the I-Beam on 2 studs and code requires 1.5" bearing which 2 studs provide. All 4 of the studs are secured to each other to help prevent spreading (seldom done in my area), and the nails are bent over the I-beam at the top. Common attachment.

So curious … without further Pics, it can be adequate … But not enough info to say 100% Ok

By the way … Who is Richard, I did not see any posters named Richard ??

Morning, Dan.
Hope hope this post finds you and your loved ones well.

Because the 2 bent nails at the top of the buildup column are how its done commonly, to which I concur, does not make it a correct method for securing a steel beam to a build up column. In this case, there is still a possibility for rotation or a side to side, horizontal movement of the beam.

Carson Dunlop Horizon have a canned narratives in the structural recommendation section, ‘Weak connection to column’ which I use when I run across a situation like this. 2 bent fasteners anchoring a steel beam. Its comical when you think of it. Those bent fasteners would extruding under load very easily. Lol. I understand, at times nails are used to set the beam in place but they are meant to be removed so the beam can be securely fastened top, bottom and both sides of the flange.

In situations like this, I recommend a licensed general contractor properly secure steel beams to the wood columns within one year. Cost minor.
If the structure requires a move involved repair, I recommend a licensed general contractor with inhouse structural engineer further evaluate and secure deficient components. Unable to determine cost.

IMO, The beam should have been manufactured with a deep flange. That’s my 2 cents.
wood column steel beam connection 2
wood column steel beam connection

What I was saying is attaching the ends of a steel beam to wood studs using bent nails is not a stanard in the industry, and not common as you indicated, and would not call it adequate, because it is wrong.
They are typically anchored down using lags or an additional clip angle from post to beam.
Since we don’t know the loading of the beam, there is no evidence in the pictures that might indicate a 2x6" wall stud would have been needed or a steel post to eliminate all questions.
Referral to an SE would be highly recommended since we don’t see the whole picture.
I also meant Randy and not Richard, but you knew that.

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