Bearing

Whenever I do an inspection the first thing to look at and the most important element in the whole house is the structure. The main beam should be resting in a proper perimeter beam pocket and adequately supported. If a failure occurs here, the whole house could implode.

For main beams bearing on concrete or masonry a three inch (3”) minimum bearing is require on concrete or masonry. For floor joists the ends of each joist shall not have less than 1-1/2 inches of bear on wood or metal, nor less than 3 inches on masonry.

The photo taken at a recent home inspection in Jacksonville below illustrates a lack of bearing of the main beam. There is a tremendous amount of weight that is continuously pressing down at all times, called load.

Even though things may seems ok for the average person, slippage could always happen Either over time or immediately, and a major disaster could surely follow. As we see in the photo taken by the inspector, there isn’t nearly enough bearing for the main house beam.