09:10AM | 08/20/03
Member Since: 08/19/03
1 lifetime posts
I am trying to buy a 3 year old town house and had a home inspection on the house. The house has brick front and two car garage.

The inspector noticed that a steel plate acting as lintel beam is running over the garage door to support the brick layer above, but it ended up 3 inches short on one end. According to the inspector, the steel plate is an angle beam carrying the brick layer on bottom flange. The inspector says he never saw this condition before and he is not sure how to analyze it.

If the steel plate is indeed a horizontal lintel beam over the garage door, it is hard to imagine how it can support the brick layer above with just one end support.

My question is, is it possible to support the brick layer above with some other construction mechanism like using garage door frame as supporting beam, and the steel plate is simply resting on the garage door frame. If so is that a standard practice?

I really appreciate some body give their opinion on this?

Thanks in advance,

Ajay Kanduru


07:36PM | 08/20/03
Member Since: 01/28/03
693 lifetime posts
While typically an 'angle iron' should be placed so that both ends are supported by structural members anchored to a foundation and footer....

An angle iron does not HAVE to be supported in this manner depending upon the "load".

For example, an angle iron supporting one or two layers of brick and simply fastened into the wooden framework of a house via lag screws, CAN be all that is structurally needed to comply with all codes and not at all in violation of any load bearing engineering principle.

Such an angle iron would not even be required to be supported AT ALL underneath one either of its sides so long as the angle iron fastened directly to the header or studs could alone bear the weight of the brick above.

If your inspector cannot determine the load bearing capacity of the angle iron, have him, as part of his inspection process and already paid for by YOU, consult a structural engineer out of his own pocket to make the call...


04:45PM | 08/21/03
While I agree with most of what "homebild" says he is not totally accurate:

  • The steel angle cannot support any amount of brick by just being attached to wall studs over a large opening unless there is a properly sized wood lintel supporting them. I am sure he meant this but I thought it should be pointed out so there is no misunderstanding.

  • I don‚Äôt mean to be picky but the term lag ‚Äúscrews‚Äù can also be misleading. They should be a minimum of ¬Ω‚Äù lag bolts. 5/8‚Äù are more typical and they should be at least 2 ¬Ω‚Äù ‚Äì 3‚Äù long and preferably hot dipped galvanized.

  • The home inspector is NOT required to make a structural call under these circumstances. It is his job to point out possible problems and recommend that a structural engineer or other professional be consulted concerning an item in question. Building code and engineering issues are not his responsibility and are not part of the home inspection.



05:39PM | 08/23/03
Member Since: 01/28/03
693 lifetime posts
Not sure that GlennG has the correct assessment of the facts here...

But he "IS" a "MODERATOR" so what choice do we have but to comply?

Architects and engineers who have instructed me seem to differ......

[This message has been edited by homebild (edited August 23, 2003).]


03:28AM | 08/24/03

After re-reading my previous statement I can see where it may have been misunderstood. Allow me clarify it.

When I stated; "The steel angle cannot support any amount of brick by just being attached to wall studs over a large opening unless there is a properly sized wood lintel supporting them." I was referring to a wood lintel supporting the studs the angle is attached to, not supporting the brick directly.

I assure you I do posses a true assessment of the facts. I have been working with engineers and architects for over 33 years in both residential and large commercial jobs. I have a diploma in home inspections and am in the process of starting my own inspection business. I DO know the responsibilities of a home inspector.

I resent the inference that just because I am the moderator I control what is being said here. This is an open board. If I stepped on your toes or injured your pride "homebild" I apologize. I just wanted this posting to be as accurate as possible being it is of a structural nature.




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