Structural Repairs

One of the most common problems for older homes in the Napa area are damaged floor joists resulting in sloped and sagging floors. This damage can be caused by a variety of reasons, age, ground settling, earth quakes or improper weight loads.
 
In many cases, these problems can be remedied by simply “sistering” an additional joist of the same size next to the damaged member.
 
Before any work is attempted it is highly recommended that you obtain the services of a licensed structural engineer to be sure of the proper method of repair.
 
If you are fortunate enough to only have to “sister” ( or attach ) a new joist to the existing one , this may be a task you can perform yourself.
 
You must first address any sag or leveling issues with the floor and the damaged joist. This can usually be taken care of by placing a wood or steel beam under the damaged/sagging area and then using a hydraulic jack and post to jack the floor to level. Depending on the severity of the sagging, it may be necessary to do this incrementally over a period of several days to avoid or minimize cracking of existing overhead walls.
 
Once you are level, you can place the new joist material next to the damaged one, applying a sufficient amount of construction adhesive to both pieces. Make sure that you have proper support at both ends of each joist (usually placed in the wall) that will properly transfer the weight load to the foundation. You can now attach the new material to the damaged piece.I normally like to use 1/2” x 3” lag bolts, placed every 8” to 12” , staggered at the top & bottom of the joists here. Due to the usual hardness of the existing material, it is most often necessary to pre drill before lagging the two pieces together.
 
In the event the joists serve a lesser weight load, such as a deck or outdoor porch using 16d nails or 3” deck screws may be adequate to attach the two pieces. STRUCTURAL REPAIRS
 
 
One of the most common problems for older homes in the Napa area are damaged floor joists resulting in sloped and sagging floors. This damage can be caused by a variety of reasons, age, ground settling, earth quakes or improper weight loads.
 
In many cases, these problems can be remedied by simply “sistering” an additional joist of the same size next to the damaged member.
 
Before any work is attempted it is highly recommended that you obtain the services of a licensed structural engineer to be sure of the proper method of repair.
 
If you are fortunate enough to only have to “sister” ( or attach ) a new joist to the existing one , this may be a task you can perform yourself.
 
You must first address any sag or leveling issues with the floor and the damaged joist. This can usually be taken care of by placing a wood or steel beam under the damaged/sagging area and then using a hydraulic jack and post to jack the floor to level. Depending on the severity of the sagging, it may be necessary to do this incrementally over a period of several days to avoid or minimize cracking of existing overhead walls.
 
Once you are level, you can place the new joist material next to the damaged one, applying a sufficient amount of construction adhesive to both pieces. Make sure that you have proper support at both ends of each joist (usually placed in the wall) that will properly transfer the weight load to the foundation. You can now attach the new material to the damaged piece.I normally like to use 1/2” x 3” lag bolts, placed every 8” to 12” , staggered at the top & bottom of the joists. Due to the usual hardness of the existing material, it is most often necessary to pre drill before lagging the two pieces together.
 
In the event the joists serve a lesser weight load, such as a deck or outdoor porch using 16d nails or 3” deck screws may be adequate to attach the two pieces.