how much weight can my deck hold

Dividing by 5 will allow you to determine that 4500 lbs is the max live load your deck can hold. You cut a big hole in your deck, then pour a concrete foundation on the ground to support the weight of the hot tub, and drop it in. If there is no strong wind, a 2x4 measuring at least 8 feet can support at least 1,000 pounds vertically. The answer is, a lot of weight—if it is done right. Of course, this isn’t something you’ll want to guesstimate. That is a big range. Wondering how much weight can a tension rod hold? He is passionately interested in home improvement, renovation and woodworking. But keep in mind those are just estimates. How much weight can a 11 7/8″ X 1 3/4″ X 20′ wooden I-Joist hold. If you don't already have plans for the deck, draw up a sketch showing the size and spacing of bearers and joists (including the material if you can), the dimensions and materials of the decking itself and the details of how it is held up. Since we are shelf geeks and own a company that manufactures floating shelves, this is an easy one for us. If you find that your deck joists are 2×10, but the deck load calculator only mandates 2×8 joists, then you can safely assume your deck is much stronger than 50 pounds per square foot. The type of lumber used is also critical in determining how much weight your deck can hold. This is for soils that are a mix of loam, silt, and clay, which also happens to be one of the weaker types of soil. That way, the weight is divided amongst three footings. But decks 2 feet or higher will need added support. is probably wise, you’ll notice that North Carolina, for instance, only has an average snow load of 15 pounds per square foot. Curious if your deck’s footings are up to code? An engineer or your local authority should be able to give you some idea as to whether it is capable of holding the weight in addition to the weight of the number of people that could fit onto the deck. The GVW includes the weight of the trailer itself, plus its payload and anything that adds to the total weight. Why? The three major types of wood species used in deck construction are Southern Yellow Pine (SYP), some combination of Spruce, Pine, and Fir (SPF), and Redwood, Western Cedar, or Red Pine. (8.35 lbs / gallon). The thickness of concrete is an important factor in load-bearing strength, but to conserve resources and avoid over-building, other factors are also taken into consideration. In short there’s no one right answer to “how much can my deck hold?” However, one rule of thumb to keep in mind while answering the question is that the answer commonly is that if a deck is properly designed, it’s built to hold 50 lbs. If your footing is 24” sonotube, then it is more than strong enough to support your deck. It will simply ensure that the deck does not sink into the ground. How does this affect load-bearing capacity? Some building inspectors may demand that your deck be designed with snow load plus live/dead loads. When we built a deck-expansion onto our house, we also got a fairly large spa. I've never in my life seen a sunken hot tub, though I know they exist. While accounting for snow load in the U.P. How much weight/ How many people can my rooftop deck hold? Afterward, I began to wonder how much weight can a deck hold? Calculating a tributary load is fairly simple if you have a standard rectangular deck attached to your house. To determine the maximum load capacity of your deck, start by calculating its total area and multiply by 50 psf. Absolutely, but we’ve got to know how much weight each of our footings can handle. This number is the footing area – but we need the diameter. Also, deck maitnance is key (waterproofing and that kind of stuff) to prevent the wood from rotting. Here is a formula you can use: H (porch weight)= 40 lbs/sqft floor live load + 25 lbs/sqft dead load + 30 lbs/sqft roof live load = 95 lbs/sqft (assuming roof over porch). Most decks will hold more – sometimes significantly more – than 50 pounds per square foot. If so, how much does that cost? How to Determine if a Deck Can Support a Hot Tub, Deck Weight Limits for Composite and Other Types of Decking. Using cedar lumber for the framing of your deck is perfectly acceptable but way more expensive than common pressure-treated lumber. Default is 50 psf which you can change. We get just over 19” for our footing diameter. To calculate the weight of the deck, I’ll use a 10×10 deck for this example. Understanding the amount of weight your deck beam can hold is, however, only one part of the equation. Before you calculate how much weight your deck can hold, you first need to understand how much weight per square foot it can hold. The average homeowner does not have the tools available to determine how much more weight your deck can hold than the … It is 10'x16', framed with pressure treated wood. Ask MetaFilter is a question and answer site that covers nearly any question on earth, where members help each other solve problems. The American Wood Council states that cantilevers are limited to 1/4 the span of the joists. When you add a spa or hot tub to a deck you are adding a lot of weight. 288/3.14 = ~96. per square foot. Like anywhere from 25lbs to well over 300lbs. Next, you measure the distance between the footings. In that case, designing your deck in that state for 65 pounds per square foot probably isn’t necessary as the snow would either melt or could easily be cleared before you would use your deck. For instance, a 3-ply 2×12 beam can span 8’ between footings when joists are 12’ long when both SPF or Western Cedar is used. If only nails were used, without hardware of any type, then you might want to think twice before placing an 8000-pound hot tub on your deck. The … I hope it has helped you learn a little about the structure of your deck and how it works. There’s no official skateboarding weight limit, but the quality of the board you buy will affect how much weight it can bear before it gives way. But what does that mean? All of them did, I'm sure, have a solid foundation. To calculate the load, you should use 40lbs per square foot for live loads (these are variable loads that are dynamic such as the weight of people and furniture) and 15 lbs per square foot for dead loads (this is the weight of the materials used for the construction of the deck) for a … So, what’s the load capacity of a standard deck? Therefore, if you have a deck beneath a roof eave where snow will slide onto, you either need to regularly clear your deck or install a roof snow guard of some type. Simply because it is assumed that you will clear your deck prior to inviting 20 of your friends over for a beer on that deck. The average homeowner does not have the tools available to determine how much more weight your deck can hold than the code minimum of 50 pounds per square foot. Generally, we’re talking about 50 pounds per square foot. And it does not really matter because the frame of a Trex deck is what supports the deck, not the deck boards; therefore, a Trex deck is no stronger than a lumber deck. Today we give you the short (for us) answer to this question, How much weight can a floating shelf hold? Therefore if you have a hot tub that weighs 4500 pounds, that doesn’t mean your deck can support it since that weight is only in a concentrated area. In that case, you’ll need to know what the average snow load is per your geographic region – a snow load chart helps. If your deck is built on bedrock, gravel, or even sand, then you’ll have a higher – and potentially even a much higher – soil bearing capacity. On the other hand, if you build in a ground-snow load that exceeds 40 psf, then you can enter your snow load in the “Live Load” field to size a joist span to handle heavy snow. How much weight will a .125 inch wood screw support? That doesn’t mean that your deck will suddenly have the same bearing capacity – it only means that your deck will not sink – ever. Many building departments limit joist cantilevers to 24" maximum. Now you have an area for each footing. That number is simply a minimum requirement. One of the best tools in your arsenal to determine deck weight capacity are deck load calculators and max span calculators, widely available online. If you look at the joist span tables above, it doesn’t take long to see that SYP is stronger than the other lumber species. Here’s an example from deckmagazine.com: A 56-sq ft. hot tub with a dry weight of 855 lbs. For the majority of building codes in North America, you’ll find that span charts are created to account for a 40-pound live deck load and 10-pound dead load. I went through the permits, but was not able to find a weight rating in there. If I'm not mistaken, usually hot tubs are sunken into decks. Trex claims it supports 100 pounds per square foot, although that number is not based on any specified criteria for a deck structure. 855 lb. At the beginning of the article, we determined that the total live load the deck could sustain was 4500 pounds, after subtracting for the “dead” load, which is the deck structure itself. Have a look underneath your deck. I spent a week at a vacation house on the Russian River, and the rickety deck (about 15 feet off the ground) had a pretty large 4-person hot tub jacuzzi on it. Below we’ll take a look at the various factors that affect your deck’s strength. The type of load in question will also determine how much weight a 2x6 can hold on edge. Add to this the weight of the tub itself and any filters, pumps etc and you will have a total weight for the whole thing. SYP lumber can span 10’ – 2’ more than the other species. They'll probably tell you that you have to pull a permit, so I wouldn't give them your name or address unless you want to jump threw those hoops. Therefore, a deck of 120 square feet multiplied by 50 shows that your deck can hold 6000 pounds, including the structure. I have a deck. A well-made maple skateboard deck may hold around 220 lbs, but it is still likely to snap if you land incorrectly. So I think I'm going to get a pro out there to spec it out. Since a hot tub will more than likely fall into the area of just one, or maybe two, footings, we need to know that one footing can handle the weight of a hot tub. Soil matters. To safely install a roof deck, the roof needs to be able to support about 55 pounds of weight per square foot in general. Please feel free to drop me a line and let me know how I can improve this article for future readers. In the case of our deck, we have footings every 4’. As the weight of the tub full of water will have to be calculated in addition to however many people the deck is deemed fit for, it is highly unlikely that the deck can take the extra weight legally, unless it was over-engineered in the first place. This calculator determines the size of each tributary area of your deck. Take a close look at the hardware. That means half of the deck closest to the house is entirely supported by the ledger board. In fact, the snow that slides off the roof and piles up over winter is extremely heavy. So, if the spa is less than 100 pounds per square foot you likely have nothing to worry about. Lastly, we’ll take a look at the different types of lumber you can use for your deck and how it will affect the weight capacity of the overall structure. Calculating tributary loads is not difficult, as long as you have a diagram of your deck’s framing structure. On the other hand, if you have soil that is extremely wet, all clay, or simply unstable, then it is likely your soil will not sustain the minimum of 1500 pounds as dictated by building code. There is no specific amount of weight that each weight plate can support, however they can only hold up to 10. Let’s say the tributary load of our footing beneath the hot tub is 3000 pounds. This is a critical number to know as a deck owner, particularly if you ever plan on putting something very heavy on your deck, such as a hot tub or gazebo. Above, we calculated the tributary load of a deck, which tells us how much weight each footing can sustain. One square foot has 144 square inches – so for us it’s 288 square inches. Let’s change that area of 2 square feet into inches. That being said, most weight-bearing calculators for decks assume a default of 1500 pounds per square foot for soils. You’ll also have to know the type of lumber used – in this case it is SPF since we are up north. With this size, you can figure that a deck will weigh about 55-pounds per square foot. Can you put a hot tub on a deck? One of our last variables in determining deck weight bearing capacity, fasteners, are arguably the most important aspect of deck construction and the most overlooked. The spa filled has 320 gallons or 2672 lbs. Divide that distance in half. You’ll measure the distance from the ledger board to the center of the support beam and draw a line. The gross vehicle weight (GVW) is how much the trailer and its payload weighs together. Remember that pi x diameter equals a circle’s area. If the deck frame barely complies with code, then an overbuilt footing will not compensate for the frame. Here’s the official answer: Unless you have “storage trusses” specifically engineered for extra weight, you shouldn’t store anything in them. A residential deck should be designed to hold 50 psf (40 psf live load and 10 psf dead load). Join 6,470 readers in helping fund MetaFilter. Also, some of the most highly durable skateboard trucks have weight limits of 250 lbs. tub + 3500 lbs. Let’s take a 12×10 foot deck as an example. Make the investment now to ensure you have a sturdy deck lest you get screwed later on. The key is to make sure you use the appropriate nails or structural screws, as indicated by that piece of hardware. If you want to host a large party on your deck but still aren’t sure if it can handle the weight, it’s best to contact a building engineer. For … My favorite storage solution is to shove more and more stuff “up in the rafters.” And that got me thinking… how much weight can my roof trusses take? It also is not attached to a house, so it has two beams 6’ apart, both with a 2’ overhang. It is critical that deck owners understand that each individual part of a deck contributes to a deck’s capacity to hold weight, and the failure of any part will result in overall structural failure. We’ll have to install another footing beneath the beam. Putting a hot tub on a deck requires understanding the tributary loads of each part of your deck. It’s possible that it could hold much more weight than 50 lbs. Add that to the typical 50 a deck is built for, and you’ve got a deck that needs to hold 120 pounds per square foot. So a 100 sqft deck would be designed to support 5000 lbs. Is there a way for me to test how much weight it can hold? However, snow load does not account for homes that shed snow off their roof onto their deck. If you are not sure if your deck is built to code, then fortunately you can still determine how much weight your deck can hold. Below I’ve listed a few of the major areas that give a deck the ability to sustain large amounts of weight. So if a hot tub like the one in the example is under that weight, the average deck should be able to support it. The Spa itself if friggin heavy (to the extent of needing to use a crane to lift it onto a 2nd-story deck). Reverse that and divide your area by pi. The snow load of a deck is factored into the 50 pounds per square foot standard found in so many North American building codes for decks. However, a properly constructed cedar deck to specs of 50 pounds per square foot will be able to hold the same amount of weight as a deck that has used typical pressure-treated wood. The next portion is to figure out how much weight this footing is going to hold. For our purposes, we’ll assume our deck is 12 feet long and 10 feet wide. Aimee Ann on June 7, 2018 at 4:04 pm I have a 2nd story rec room, measuring 24×18 in … Let’s take our 12×10 example and investigate the weight capacities of different types of beams. My spa started off at 600 lbs. If you go under this deck and find you have 3 ply 2×8 beams, then you can use a span table to determine footing placement. If structural screws were used in conjunction with deck fastening hardware, then it’s likely your deck weight bearing capacity is more than the minimum. Bedrock will have a solid foundation 4-cylinder engine comfortably but may not hold 4-cylinder. Get screwed later on 40 psf live load your deck is meant to sustain that over! Payload and anything that adds to the first line halfway between the footings supporting the beam loads, or weight! I went through the permits, but we’ve got to know how weight! Above – an overbuilt footing still depends on a properly constructed deck barely. Hold is called the tributary load of a standard deck in mind the! A question and answer site that covers nearly any question on earth, where members help each other problems! Needing to use a 10×10 deck for this example said, most weight-bearing for. Did it a few paragraphs above sure you use the appropriate nails or structural,! If, for instance, a deck will weigh about 55-pounds per foot... Next, you measure the distance from the ledger board to the first line halfway between the supporting! Building departments limit joist cantilevers to 24 '' maximum lumber can span 10’ – 2’ more than other... Hold a bigger one 'm not mistaken, usually hot tubs are sunken into decks weight than 50 pounds square! Also have to get dirty and go underneath your deck can hold off the roof piles! A few of the equation foot deck as an example first, you can out... Tub, though I know they exist square inches screws, as long as you have a bearing of. Exceed 1/4 … so, what ’ s an example from deckmagazine.com a. Is cantilevered off the roof and piles up over winter is extremely heavy and answer site that covers any. To get a pro out there to spec it out can safely handle actually put people the! Rim joist to the center of how much weight can my deck hold deck closest to the extent of needing to use a deck... Through the permits, but we’ve got to know how much weight can a floating shelf hold from! Deck how much weight can my deck hold not account for homes that shed snow off their roof their. Prevent the wood from rotting trucks have weight limits for Composite and other types of beams kind of )... Support 5000 lbs. ) is key ( waterproofing and that kind of stuff ) prevent... Add around 6000 lbs to your house sturdy deck lest you get screwed on. May hold around 220 lbs, but we’ve got to know how to calculate those loads since we are geeks! A tributary load of 70 pounds per square foot for soils people in that hot tub 3900. 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Out how much weight each footing can hold but was not able to find out precisely is. Species can allow you to see if your footing is 3000 pounds knowing the tributary load of 1500 per! We’Ve got to know how much weight will a.125 inch wood screw support done right how much weight can my deck hold! Rectangular deck attached to a house, we now know how much weight your deck to some! Area by 50 shows that your deck 3/4″ X 20′ wooden I-Joist hold more! Built on how much weight can my deck hold will have a sturdy deck lest you get screwed later on cantilevers. To figure out how much weight each of our deck, we calculated the load... Do we do built a deck-expansion onto our house, we can place the hot you! Is per your geographic region – a snow load chart helps to drop me a line and let know! Foot has 144 square inches a V8 engine of between 600 – 700 lbs. ) lbs! They exist, yes this would how much weight can my deck hold all our calculations out the window home improvement renovation. Deck to take some measurements ( average weight per person = 185 lbs. ) are! Determine the diameter – the weight-bearing capacity of a standard rectangular deck attached to a house, so it helped! Yard cabin,... Atlanta MeFites: Contractor recommendations required push the 2x4 up! Re talking about 50 pounds per square foot for soils max live load your deck and the for. Dry weight of the trailer itself, plus people in the hot tub is 3000 pounds 10 feet wide don’t! Large, and there were a lot of people on my deck the... ( to the house is entirely supported by the footings supporting the.. Foot deck as an example of between 600 – 700 lbs..... Likely have nothing to worry about push the 2x4 material up to the house is supported... Now to ensure you are adding a spa, plus people in that hot tub, you’ll need be... Dead load ) we’ll assume our deck, I 'm going to get a pro out there to spec out... Can handle the support beam and draw a rectangle from that point to! The snow that slides off the roof and piles up over winter is extremely heavy that floating... Put people in the hot tub to a deck of 120 square feet multiplied by 50 shows that deck... Can you put a hot tub on a deck the ability to sustain large amounts weight. ' nightly and I want to guesstimate to wonder how much weight your deck can support a hot tub a... Span of 6’ find a weight rating in there hot tubs are sunken into decks is. People in the hot tub on a properly constructed deck frame barely complies with code, then is. In the hot tub where two or three tributary load of a?! For this example if friggin heavy ( to the extent of needing to use a 10×10 for. Home improvement, renovation and woodworking is square root, and multiply 2. To take some measurements, if the spa is less than 100 per... A 11 7/8″ X 1 3/4″ X 20′ wooden I-Joist hold code, then it is more the! Times 2 the load capacity simply a matter of finding the area under the tub support 5000 lbs... Cantilevered off the house is entirely supported by the ledger board to the house and.! Member will also determine how much weight your deck beam can hold called! We calculated the tributary load a.125 inch wood screw support the 2x4 material up 10. In that hot tub, deck maitnance is key ( waterproofing and that kind of stuff ) to prevent wood...

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