Question of the Day - #14 Deck Lateral Load Connector

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Question of the Day - #14 Deck Lateral Load Connector

Postby RDavidson » Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:53 am

2015 Minnesota Residential Code Section R507 will require a lateral load connection for deck attachments to a dwelling. There is a prescriptive illustration provided in the IRC (Figure 507.2.3) that is applicable only to solid sawn lumber joists running perpendicular to the exterior wall of the dwelling with additional fasteners required in the floor sheathing/joist connection. There are no other prescriptive solutions. The section also states that if a positive connection cannot be verified by inspection that the deck must be designed to be freestanding. Many decks are constructed after a dwelling is constructed. Except for sprinklered homes, the underside of all floors in new home construction and on additions to existing homes must have a plywood or gypsum board lid which will make installation of these connections more costly. Many homes are built with floor trusses or I-Joists or the solid sawn joist may be parallel to the exterior wall. Decks are often added to new homes after purchase by a contractor other than the original builder. All of this complicates compliance with this requirement.

How do you see compliance achieved with the required nailing of the floor sheathing to the joist below when floors are finished? What other solutions would you believe are acceptable? Do you believe it is reasonable to remove the ceiling membrane of the supporting floor in order to install the lateral load connectors? What other solutions would you believe are acceptable? Do you expect that if joists are other than indicated in the prescriptive illustration (trusses, I-Joists) that the deck builder must involve the services of a licensed design professional to design the proper attachment or construct the deck to be freestanding?
RDavidson
 
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