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Strengthening joists after removing support beam

Hammercwm's picture

I am needing to redo some stairs that are very steep and only have an 8" wide tread.  The problem I am running into is when I calculate new stairs with a wider 12" tread I am running into a center support beam as I climb up or down them that runs the length of the house.  This beam needs to be removed to give me the head room I need.  The beam supports four 2x10 floor joists that butt together on top of it.  My idea was to sister a 1/4" thick 9" wide by 12 foot long steel plate on one side of the joists attached with 1/2" hex bolts to basically allow the joists to then span the width of the house which is 28 feet unsupported.  Would this work?  Thanks!

Sorry dude, but that has got (post #214572, reply #1 of 6)

Sorry dude, but that has got to be the dumbest idea I've ever seen here.

2x10 joists are not capable (post #214572, reply #2 of 6)

2x10 joists are not capable of spanning 28 feet, even if not doubtfully spliced.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Joist reinforcement steel plate (post #214572, reply #3 of 6)

steel plate should be between two joist to keep from deflecting, but it depends on load if this will work . Shoud have Eng. approve or adj rise & tread to give more head room as noted 2"x10" will do not span 28'

Sol Eschenburg

Not being able to see exactly (post #214572, reply #4 of 6)

Not being able to see exactly what you mean makes it hard but under some circumstances it may be possible to move the beam up into the joist and hang the joist with hangers. A photo or drawing would help. Your idea will not work on many levels.

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

Can't visualize this. (post #214572, reply #5 of 6)

I don't see how taking out a beam that has joists on both sides of it can give you any more head room. Where is the opening for the stairs?

Never Mind (post #214572, reply #6 of 6)

My wife started this whole dilemma when she wanted the stairs extended with a more comfortable tread width to climb.  The current tread is 8 1/4" with a 7 1/4" rise which granted is like climbing Mt Everest.  The issue started when she insisted on having a landing at the third step from the bottom.  She wanted to be able to turn left or right and walk down two more steps to the floor.  The stairs run along side a support wall with the beam on top of it and the joists on top of that.  The problem is when you are standing on the third step there is only 60" of head room when you would make the turn to go down the landing becauase the beam is in the way.  If I put the landing at the second step you would still only have a head room of 68 1/4".  Anyone taller than a Hobbit is going to have a head injury.  I told her it would take an act of God to do what she wants and cost 10 times more money.  She called two friends of hers that are building contractors and had them look at it as well.  They told her the same thing, it can't be done.  I started this thread before she called them so she could see the responses of other people that are knowledgeable about construction.  Thank you all for helping me convince my wife that some wishes are just that....wishes!  I attached a picture of what I'm looking at.  The treads look wider in the picture than they actually are.

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