LESLIE: Dan in Virginia, with a question about a foundation design for steel building, you’ve got The Money Pit. What are you working on?
DAN: I’m getting ready to build a steel building. And I was wondering how thick to make the concrete, though. I’ve had different people tell me different thicknesses and everything, so I was just wanting to get you all’s opinion on it.
TOM: OK. So you’re building a steel building, like for a garage?
DAN: It’s going to be part of a garage and part barn.
DAN: It’s 30×50 and it’s 15 feet high.
TOM: And you’re going to put a concrete slab and then build the building above it?
DAN: Yeah. On top of it, yes. And in one section of it, I want to put one of those vehicle lifts in it.
TOM: So, you really need to have a foundation design for steel building. Where do you live in the country?
DAN: I live in southwest part of Virginia: Tazewell County, to be exact.
TOM: Alright. So you do get some winter there, which means the ground is going to get frozen. And if the slab is not properly anchored with a footing underneath it, not to mention the weight of the roof and then the roof with snow and everything else, you’re going to get some – you could have some settling or some cracking.
So, you can do a foundation design for steel building one of two ways: you can either build a standard foundation out of block or you could do what’s called a “monolithic pour,” which is the concrete basically goes across the floor and then down into sort of a trench around the outside of that building. And that forms, in one piece, the footing and the slab together. And this way, you’ll be in good shape.
Now, in terms of that lift – that vehicle lift – you might even dig it out a little bit more in that area where the lift’s going to be and make that area – the slab a little bit thicker. Just make sure you have some extra support in the middle of the floor. Alright?
I hope that helps you out. Good luck with that project.