5a Load Bearing Walls:
A load bearing wall is one which carries vertical loads from the construction above or lateral loads resulting from the wind. These loads may act separately or in combination. Both internal and external walls may be load bearing. Elsek Steel Panel recommends the following for the load bearing walls:
- ¬ All load bearing studs shall be minimum Elsek Panel C90 cold formed section.
- ¬ A structural top plate is used to carry truss loads from the roof to the studs, where the studs are not located directly under the truss load points. Top plates shall be Elsek Panel C140 cold formed section (Structural plate). The top plate shall be secured transversely at a maximum of 1800mm centers by incoming trusses or rafters with approved wall support brackets.
- ¬ The bottom plate shall be minimum Elsek Panel C 140 cold-formed section. The bottom plate must be fully supported under every load-bearing stud. This is critical with studs beside openings, or studs carrying major loads for the roof, ceiling or upper floor construction. The support can be provided by a floor joist, blocking piece or concrete slab located directly under the stud.
- ¬ Lintels are needed for openings greater than 1200mm of load bearing walls. Lintels under sheet metal roofs are principally designed for uplift from wind loading on the roof structure while lintels under tile roofs are designed principally to support downward loads from the roof trusses.
- ¬ Noggings in the form of a notched plate may be used in load bearing walls to provide lateral restraint to the wall studs.
- ¬ Bracing is needed in certain walls to provide racking resistance against wind load. It could be in the form of bracing straps or bracing sheets depending on the requirement.
- ¬ The studs, joists and trusses must be properly aligned in order to transfer the loads to the member below.