Seven Tips When Working With I-Joists

  1. Keep material off the ground and protected from the weather. Moisture is the primary enemy of engineered wood products.
  2. Brace joists across the top service before any worker stacks heavy materials on a new I-joist floor. Use 1” by 4” dimensional strapping.
  3. In homes with short foundations or uncapped crawl spaces, cover the exposed soil beneath the I-joists with a vapor barrier to prevent exposure to excessive moisture.
  4. Don’t use 16d framing nails on narrow I-joist flanges. Use a nail gun and use smaller shaft nails. Don’t overdo it when it comes to nailing.
  5. Cut large chase holes in an I-joist web near the center of the span, with other holes spaced at appropriate distances from the center. Don’t group all holes in one location, and don’t put the largest holes near either end of the I-joist.
  6. Don’t notch an I-joist like you would dimensional lumber. Avoid cutting through either flange.
  7. Add bracing to the underside of the I-beam to prevent floor bounce. Use drywall or 1” by 4” strapping. A block every 8’ in long runs also adds stability.