What's the Difference? Precise Terminology for the Home Inspector
What's the Difference? Precise Terminology for the Home Inspector October Home Inspections 866 628-1084
What’s the Diff? Series
Precise Terminology for the Home Inspector

by Arlene Puentes, October Home Inspections

What's the Difference Between a Joist and an I-joist?

When an elephant walks on a floor that is supported by joists the load caused by the weight of the elephant causes the top side fibers in the joists (the end closest to the floor) to compress — that is, to come closer together. The fibers on the other end of the joist stretch — pull apart. The fibers in the middle of the joist don't do much at all. I-joists are factory produced framing members which supply strength where it's needed, at the top and bottom ends — at the flanges

What you need to know: The flanges of an I-joist should never be field altered without the written and sighed instructions from a design professional (architech or PE). Never ever. They're doing most of the work.

All text and photos © Arlene Puentes
Do not copy


More from the "What's the Diff" Series:

What's the Difference Between:

Cement And Concrete?
Mortar And Concrete?
Masonry And Concrete?
Cinder Blocks and Concrete Blocks?
A Pier and a Post and a Column?
An Adjustable Metal Column and a Lally Column?
A Check and a Crack in a Wood Framing Member?
Yankee Gutters and Built In Gutters?
A Ridge Beam and a Ridge Board?
Stucco and EIFS and Fiber Cement Siding?

Building Science Research and Information

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