Uh-Oh. Found a Beam in wall during demo

drybeanDecember 19, 2012

I might curse.

Demo began yesterday, and the wall that everyone thought was non load bearing due to ceiling joists and existing beams has a structural post in it. There is a ceiling beam shown on this drawing; there is another one that forms a cross with it to the left to wall "B".

So we go back to the drawing board. Lukcily, the cabs I purchased are Ikea. Also exploring doing custom, have that gentleman coming back on Friday. So nothing done that can't be undone.

Beam is circled in blue.
I'm thinking the best way to incorporate it is to either anchor it on island, or to enclose it in a laundry/pantry.


ETA: It's a post. Not a beam. Doh.

This post was edited by drybean on Wed, Dec 19, 12 at 18:03

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Oh. My. I really don't want to see or hear that...we have a wall that we're taking out that is non-load bearing (believing that due to it being the same as what you mentioned). A beam. Yikes.

So, if you're enclosing it in a laundry/pantry, I'm assuming that you are completely reworking your layout. Ugg. I'm sorry that I have no helpful advice.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 6:28PM
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Andrea-Yes, we are removing two very small walls that divided the tiny kitchen from the 'den' and making it a larger, more cohesive space. Well, we were. LOL.

Here is a picture of the post:

It is the second, larger post 2nd from the left.

I hope you don't find any surprises like this! Could be worse, so if this is the worst thing that happens during the whole process I'll consider ourselves lucky.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 6:43PM
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Before you do anything else, find out--don' assume--what it would cost to move.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 8:31PM
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Marcolo- I am calling structural engineer. My GC seems to think it needs to stay. It's part of the support r the second story bedroom addition done by previous owners.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 8:34PM
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Sophie Wheeler

Some steel will fix that problem just fine. It can disappear. And unfortunately, some more of your money as well.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 8:41PM
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OK. So. We had architect and structural engineer come out today. The consensus is that the post needs to stay in line with the existing structural beams. The other option is to redo the existing beams and run them the length of the kitchen with larger, steel beams.

I'm upset.

The second option is not going to happen. It is cost prohibitive, and our ceilings are already low enough that a huge steel beam would be obtrusive.

We can move it back a few feet, so this is what I came up with. What do you guys think?

It will be right where the overhang for the island seating begins. I thought about just terminating the island there, but then it makes the fridge feel like it's off in no man land.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 8:13PM
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Does that put it ON the island? It looks like it does, but wanted to be sure. I've seen posts on islands and I think they look fine and can be made quite decorative. I'm sure the fine minds here will have ideas for how to make it look very nice!

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 8:56PM
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MomtoFour-Yes, it goes right through the island.
Here is a top down view. I was originally going to have an additional one built for symmetry-the one on the right. But now I think I'll just stick with the one that has to be there.

The bummer thing is that it necessitates a seam in the counter top, unless I do a raised bar for the island seating.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 9:02PM
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Don't do the raised bar--you lose too much function. My bar was just lowered to one level and am amazed at the functional counter space which was gained. The seam will be seen as a minor flaw once you have lived with it for awhile.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 9:48PM
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Texasgal- I'm a Texas gal too. :-) thanks for the feedback. I wasn't Keen on the idea of raised bar, and I glad to have the confirmation. Do you think the seam would be better lengthwise or width wise on the island? FWIW-I'm doing a white quartz. Not sure if seams are less or more obvious on lighter colors. No pattern on stone, unless one is necessary to camoflauge seam.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 10:09PM
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Look up structural beam on island in Houzz.com. There are many beautiful designs that look like what you are trying to do. My friend has a structural beam on either side of her island and they look like they belong there. When your kitchen is done they will look like part of a custom design. :)

    Bookmark   December 27, 2012 at 10:51PM
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I would not mind the support post in the MIDDLE of the island at all. Then it doesnt seem like something in the way that you have to reach around where on the edge of the island it would always just be there. If you can make your island wrap around it I think it would disappear more.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 11:21AM
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Camp happy-yes, I went directly to Houzz and did not pass Go when I learned about what we were going to have to do. Still can't decide if I should do one or two...

ppbenn-I thought that was what I was doing with the required post (one left in top down view). There will be counter overhang wrapped around it, right where seating begins. I struggled with how to place it so that it isn't a hindrance to my workspace, since my sink is in island. So you would abondon the second post on right side, since that would be on the end, correct? That one isn't necessary, I was just thinking of symmetry.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 1:35PM
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I think the mock-up with one post looks fine (I think two would be annoying). The post isn't in the way, and while it may not be ideal aesthetically, you will still end up with a beautiful, functional kitchen.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 1:47PM
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Funny. My Dad put a steel beam in the kitchen during a remodel when a supporting wall was removed. A wooden beam would have been twice as big.

Hence a steel beam does not have to be 'huge'. It doesn't have to be larger than the one that is already there.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 2:25PM
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