How to Fix a Broken Floor Joist

By Robert Robillard on How To


Fixing Broken, Cracked, Sagging Floor Joists

I recently had to repair a broken floor joist that had cracked. I suppose somewhere in the world there are floor joists that need to be repaired that have wide open, clear joist bays, with no pipes, wires or obstructions. That’s not my world!

From initial inspection it appeared that someone had notched the joist too much and then installed a make shift patch. The notch was made where the floor joist recessed into a wood beam, supported by chimney corbeling.

Corbeling is an “old-school,” overlapping arrangement of bricks with each course extending farther out from the vertical of the wall, than the course below. Corbeling was done for decoration or to support structural beams.

My guess is that many years back, an old vent pipe or furnace was in this location and the contractor needed to cut this section of joist to accomplish the installation.   Today, this type of notch is not be allowed by code.

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About the author

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor

Rob Robillard is “The Concord Carpenter” Rob is a builder, general contractor, carpenter, woodworker, and editor of Concord Carpenter and ToolBoxBuzz As a General Contractor and carpenter, Rob owns and operates Concord Carpenter LLC. A full-service remodeling and construction company. Rob is a recognized leader in home building best practices and a source for how-to information for building professionals. On this website, Rob covers all aspects of home construction, building science, home improvement, woodworking, remodeling, and some of the best product and tool reviews. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review series - Concord Carpenter Videos where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob approaches remodeling and building construction with a pragmatic and problem-solving approach. He enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the construction and remodeling industry. He's a strong advocate for "raising the bar" in the construction trades and promoting the trades to youth. #BeAMentor #Green2Great Craftsmanship, quality, and pride guide his journey on this channel The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

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