How important are fasteners in building garages?

August 25 / Stacey / Comments (0)

New Construction – Residential Garages and Accessory Structures –

The best built garage or accessory building is dependent not only on expert craftsmanship, experience, quality lumber and foundation materials, but also fasteners. Fasteners, which will be outlined below, are MOST important when it comes to a successful garage or storage building project. Points of stress from the weight of all aspects of a new construction garage, and the building materials themselves require metal reinforcement and come in a myriad of types.

A garage, a barn and a new home are all built in similar fashion, except, what has the greatest influence over HOW to properly build something, is what is the garage, barn or storage building is being used for.

How much live load and dead load weight is necessary for that garage to stand for a 100 years? Are you building a one-storage A Roof Garage, a Barn, a 1 ½ Story A Roof, a 1 ½ Story Barn or a full 2 story accessory or light commercial storage building? What type of roof assembly is being used? It is a truss system or rafter system? Will the garage be occupied or just used for storing cars, equipment, tools, etc? Does the garage need to be built to accommodate a lift?

There are State codes and building regulations that are the minimum requirements enforced by the State of VA for the proper way to successfully build a garage or barn. It’s just nails, right? Well no, not exactly. There are nails, screws, anchor bolts, strand wire ties for masonry products, rebar and threaded rods for increasing tensile strength and shear in concrete and hurricane clips, and on and on and on to secure lumber, concrete, masonry products, interior and exterior products.

When building a garage, lateral, vertical and horizontal wind forces are all considered. Will the wind blow against the right side, the back, will it be situated in such a way that there could be uplift or shear forces? Not all metal fasteners can be used on all types of wood or other building products throughout the building project. Pressure-treated (salt-treated) and fire-retardant wood must be anchored or fastened with zinc metals products, hot-dipped or zinc-coated galvanized steel, stainless steel, silicon bronze or copper. Fasteners needed for below-grade application must be Type 304 or 316 stainless steel only. Zinc metal fasteners are used for above grade construction.

THE WAY fasteners are used is of utmost importance as well. For instance, when building a wooden deck onto your existing garage addition, there are specific patterns in which to nail, screw or fasten the wooden members to themselves and the building it is attached to. Decks are exposed platforms that are in direct contact with the outdoors. We don’t sleep on them or live in them, but we do spend a lot of time on them. They don’t have concrete slabs that support them.

Typically a new construction deck is built as a floor joist system that runs perpendicular or parallel to the floor joists of the main structure it is attached to. You attach it using a ledger board. How you fasten that board solely determines the stability of longevity of your deck. New construction decking is fastened using lag screws and bolts in a repetitive “V” pattern. There are hundreds of metal fasteners.

It’s amazing that “a few little nails and bolts” could make such a HUGE impact on how well built your garage project will be and how many years you will be able to safely use it.

Call an experienced professional. Call H.W. Enterprises, Inc. at 757-595-4562 or 757-696-1927. We custom build our jobs to last a LIFETIME.

Why concrete is more than water, limestone and sand

August 25 / Stacey / Comments (0)

Okay,…….Concrete – What is the big deal, right?

Of all of the building materials used in the construction industry, the properties, performance and stability of concrete, is the good start to a successful building project. Concrete does not rot, corrode, burn or decay. Pressure, whether excessive and long term, or from blunt force is concrete’s only adversary.

It takes years of experience of learning about concrete to have the ability to provide concrete services such as driveways, concrete pavers and building slabs that meet building code. There is a certain art to pouring and working with concrete. There are also environmental considerations to make when making cement and using it. There are certain inherent qualities of the limestone, shale, sand and iron ore that directly affect the quality of concrete. If they aren’t mixed and crush in the proper fashion, the base, cement will be weakened

Concrete is the result of a chemical reaction between these natural resources, limestone, shale, sand, gypsum, iron ore AND water. There are specific percentages of each of those elements used to create the concrete used in building highways, residential new construction, pools, accessory buildings, such as garages and agriculture barns

When the concrete base (powder cement) is mixed with water, hydration begins. The cement bonds with the water. As the water evaporates, the concrete hardens. If there is too much water, the concrete weakens. If it is finished poorly but the tradesman, it will be susceptible to cracking. Not enough water causes the cement mix to harden at a quicker rate, leaving holes and uneven areas that will crumble over time. There are additives used, called admixtures that tradesman use to either speed up or slow down the hardening process. Weather has a dramatic effect on the building industry. When the temperature drops, the bond between the cement and the water changes. This is also true when temperatures are high. When temperatures are low, accelerants are used. If the temperatures drop below 36 degrees for even a few hours, there could be uneven distribution and either the strength or performance will suffer.

The abilities of your building construction craftsman and tradesman to manipulate a concrete pour is the final and perhaps most important part in a successful building project. Building contractors come in many shapes and sizes. Successful builders are most often those with the most experience. It takes years to master the art of concrete, as well as other building contractors services. Look for longevity and you will have a successful building experience and when considering a garage in Hampton Roads (Williamsburg, Newport News, Yorktown, Poquoson) reach out to H.W. Enterprises, Inc.