LVL Beams

Removing a load bearing wall to create an open concept and to be replaced by LVL beams

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*LVL. This is a beam made up of (2) layers of laminated veneer lumber. These LVL’s are 1+3/4″ thick so when 2 are combined and glued together you have a 3+1/2″ thickness on the total beam. Laminated Veneer Lumber is much stronger than regular dimensional lumber and it has no grain. Regular dimensional lumber has natural grain running with the long way length of the lumber and is subject to cracking/splitting along this grain. First you need to temporarily brace both sides of the ceiling about 2′ back from the existing wall. Put x bracing on both sides of each temp. wall. Then remove your wall. Now the end studs of this new opening are going to be accepting the load from this new beam or header.Make sure they are double studs at each end and that they rest on solid blocking under them. Purchase 2 layers of LVL long enough to make your beam.

You can install them one layer at a time – just use heavy duty liquid nails to glue them together. Use strong *C-Clamps to pull them together tight, or drill and use carriage bolts to suck them tight together. Be thinking of how you are going to patch the floor where the bottom of your old wall was. You may already have decided to put new flooring in the newly enlarged area. Have a shop vac ready and be prepared for some dust as you remove the wall, also plan on having a few electrical wires to relocate and possibly a plumbing/vent pipe or even a heating duct. Cover furniture/cabinets with plastic – turn off furnace so it does not suck dust in return air and blow it all over your house. Put box fan in a window or doorway to suck out dust quickly.