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  #1  
Old 01/25/2005, 12:11 AM
Versus Versus is offline
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How much weight can a floor handle?

i live in a fairly new house , about 14 years .. i am on the second story and both my tanks are on the bottom floor .. Do you think it would be able to hold a 65gallon ? or would it land on top of the dining room table and squish my little puppyface gumdrop man?
  #2  
Old 01/25/2005, 09:45 AM
DtheDude DtheDude is offline
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there are a few threads on this around here, try doing a search. I know there are certain ways to find out what parts of you house are strongest (joists, etc) but dont know much about it
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  #3  
Old 01/25/2005, 10:50 AM
TANGBOY5000 TANGBOY5000 is offline
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A 65 will be fine. Just make sure it's up against a wall, and not in the middle of the floor. It won't fall through in the middle of the floor either, but it just gets in the way when you have an aquarium in the middle of the floor.
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Old 01/25/2005, 12:11 PM
besl besl is offline
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Sorry for chiming in, but I have the same question for a 125 gallong display with 30 gallon sump (at 8 lbs/gal thats 1240 pounds for just the water) - tank and equip it 's gott be close to a ton - do you think an outside wall can handle this weight?
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  #5  
Old 01/25/2005, 01:55 PM
TANGBOY5000 TANGBOY5000 is offline
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Being that it's 6 ft long, unless you have a weird sized 125, that should span at least 4 joists. You should be good.
  #6  
Old 01/25/2005, 03:30 PM
69vette 69vette is offline
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Depends on which way the joists are running. Depending on which outside wall, it could be either way.
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  #7  
Old 01/25/2005, 05:55 PM
paulpp187 paulpp187 is offline
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just brace it up any way i have a 250 g in my bedroom depending on the size of your tank and where your joists run its pretty simple go by 2- 4x6 pressure treated make sure you extend 2ft beyond the the tank both sides(from left to right) then for the width one 1 ft behind the tank and in front 1 ft beyond (front to back) run the 4by 6 opposite of the joists supported by 4 lolli colums those colums will support 10,000 lbs i never had a problem my floor will not even move alittle.you could park a truck on my floor and it still wouldn't move
  #8  
Old 01/25/2005, 06:02 PM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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I'm an engineer who's been in construction for a few years.

I'de be happy to park a truck on almost any floor, anywhere in any house.

For a 65G tank, don't worry about a thing unless you think there is a problem anyway. If the floor is rotten, falling apart, and your neighbour stole your joists for a BBQ, worry about the weight, otherwise don't even think about it.

Will
  #9  
Old 01/25/2005, 07:03 PM
skinutt skinutt is offline
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Jotca, you may be an engineer, but I actually see the "slam" construction going on this day and time. I would not park my truck on any second floor. The work I see on a daily basis is shotty at best! I do agree with you on the 65 gallon, there should be no worries on that. The 125 however, I would find out for sure which way the joists are running!
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  #10  
Old 01/25/2005, 07:33 PM
viggen viggen is offline
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Like others stated, a 65g wouldn't be a problem. If you factor in generous #'s for gallon- weight & say 10#'s a gallon (to account for the tank & all that stuff) even 650 lbs is the weight of 3-4 people.

With the 125 + sump that 1500-1600 lbs or the weight of 8 300# people. I would try to get this tank to cross as many joists as possible just to be safe.

A friend had a 300g, 125g & 50g in the 2nd floor of his old house all in his bedroom, never had a problem. On his 1st floor he had around 5,000 gallons of water in probably 800 sq ft of living space, he braced the floor from the basement to eliminate any sagging issues.
  #11  
Old 01/25/2005, 07:39 PM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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I also see the "slam" construction, as you phrase it. If you wouldn't park a truck on a floor you built, you should get another job

I'm not sure what you're proffesion is, but I know when I build a floor or supervise a floor, the work is not shoty.

Architects and engineers are constantly saying how "shotty" a job is when they have no idea how to do it themselves.

The fact is any 2X6 framed house will hold any tank, anywhere. The only people I would trust as naysayers of that are contractors, and good ones. If you have any concerns, bring a contractor over to take a look.

Will
  #12  
Old 01/25/2005, 07:41 PM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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Oh by the way. The weight of a 200 lb guy jumping on the floor from 3 feet is over 8000 lbs. If you can jump up and down without feeling like you're falling through, you have no problem.
  #13  
Old 01/25/2005, 07:44 PM
beerguy beerguy is offline
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As stated, a 65g tank isn't a problem just about anywhere you could put it.

For a tank larger than that, if you're really worried about it, have a structural engineer come out and take a look. It's not that big of an expense if it makes you feel secure about the installation.
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  #14  
Old 01/25/2005, 08:24 PM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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Structural Engineer? I'm sure that's worth the $1000 assesment...

As an engineer I can say, don't listen to 99% of engineers. Get a carpenter if you really want to know. Cheaper and more knowledgeable.

Will
  #15  
Old 01/25/2005, 09:27 PM
mike536 mike536 is offline
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Hey jotca,
Just from a military point of view. You said that you could park a tank on a 2x6 framed house, you do realize that a tank weighs over 30 tons. Easy. Another question is how would you get it up the stairs? LOL.
  #16  
Old 01/25/2005, 09:30 PM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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By the time you drive a tank onto a second floor, I think the floor kinda comes down to your level
  #17  
Old 01/25/2005, 10:19 PM
lmsrch lmsrch is offline
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lol
  #18  
Old 01/25/2005, 10:20 PM
lmsrch lmsrch is offline
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i feel better knowing that i can jump with 8000 pounds force lol


maby i will put taht 150 upsatirs
  #19  
Old 01/25/2005, 11:33 PM
clkwrk clkwrk is offline
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I have my 120 with 60 gallon sump in my Doublewide, My joists span 13 feet across on the side with my tank . I dont have it on an out side wall and have no probs at all. As a matter of fact the manufacture of my home told me to take the width of the tank x the length of the joist x 50 and thats what my floor can hold . But mind that is furniture and people included For me that was
2600lbs. So my 1500lb 120 is safe and sucure.
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  #20  
Old 01/25/2005, 11:37 PM
clkwrk clkwrk is offline
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oh and jumping up and down will tell you nothing. That is a breif amount of stress and has no comparison to dead weight and its ablity to shere a joist or sag a floor.
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  #21  
Old 01/26/2005, 07:43 AM
besl besl is offline
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take the width of the tank x the length of the joist x 50 and thats what my floor can hold
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thanks for the feedback... for more specifics, it is a standard 125 AGA and 30 AGA sump (72" L x 18" W). I want to put this on a second floor outside wall, with the tank running parallel to the joists. The house is standard construction and the way the joists ended up, there is actually a joist approximately 12 - 24" in front of the wall that I want to put the tank against - I can measure the exact position of that joist if that helps.

BTW using the "rule" above, tank width x joist length x 50 = 1.5 ft x 13' x 50 = 975 (if this is a valid calculation and I am using correctly, then this would say it couldn't hold a 125 + 30 gal tank).

Any further comments will be appreciated.
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  #22  
Old 01/26/2005, 08:15 AM
69vette 69vette is offline
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It's not whether the joists will hold the weight, 99% of the time they will. The problem is, how stable will the tank be when someone (like my kids) start jumping up and down in front of it? This becomes an even bigger problem when the joist run parallel to the tank. Fastening the stand to the wall will help somewhat.
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  #23  
Old 01/26/2005, 09:28 AM
clkwrk clkwrk is offline
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Sorry I meant length. My tank is 4 foot loong and perpendicular to the joists. Which is 4x13x50=2600lbs in that 4x13 area
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  #24  
Old 01/26/2005, 09:56 AM
j0tca j0tca is offline
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*sigh*

clkwrk, "As a matter of fact the manufacture of my home told me to take the width of the tank x the length of the joist x 50 and thats what my floor can hold "

This is not true, I'm sorry you were told this, but it's simply not true. Wood is a lot stronger than you think. The truth is that how much weight a floor can hold depends more of the specific house, age, and location of the tank than anything else. If you want to get into specifics, get a proffesional opinion, do not trust a "well my brother's friend's fiance's dad was once a carpenter", or "my house manufacturer told me.." story.

If you are really interested, I have a book somewhere with specific load constants in it that we can use to figure out actually what your floor can hold. You would need to figure out what kind of joists you have though and their spacing (it's not always standard despite what people would like to tell you)

Personally I think it would be interesting, but the weight of a tank is far less than the failure point of most floors. If your house is at least somewhat modern (built after 1970), you have no problem. There is a reason you have never heard of someone's tank falling through their floor.

Oh, and jumping up and down does give you a VERY good idea as to the status of a floor. You can tell if the joists are moving. Remeber that change of momentum=force out your high school physics class. If you feel no movement after jumping up and down, the floor is still structurally sound.

Will
  #25  
Old 01/26/2005, 11:09 AM
scottfarcuz scottfarcuz is offline
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I've been framing houses about 7 years now. Here is my opinion.

I am assuming your house is built with 2"x10" floor joists placed 16" on center. This is standard practice atleast in this part of the country.

I would never put a tank of any size parallel to my floor joist unless it was sitting centered over 2 joists with a few load bearing walls or other supports under them. Without the tank centered over 2 joist your counting on the plywood/OSB to hold the tanks weight. The ply/OSB will hold a lot of weight but when the weight is applied for years it is going to sag.

I agree with 69vette in that I am sure the floor will hold the tank even when placed parallel to the joists, but it is going to settle probably pretty fast. An unlevel 125g tank is going to = exploding glass and a LOT of water, livestock, and maybe even rock on the floor. Your chance of a 18" wide tank centered over 2 parallel joist when placed against an outside wall is slim at best. Get a stud finder and run it on the ceiling of the first floor to see where thay are.

I would find a place to put the tank perpendicular to the joists. Even then I would keep it against a load bearing wall. This will spread the weight to 4 or 5 joists and put the weight in the strongest 1/3 of the joists length.

Comparing parking a truck on a floor to putting an aquarium on it is apples and oranges. A wood floor with a lot of weight, but in the wrong place WILL sag. The truck isnt going to be there for years and even of it was it wouldnt bust open one day and cause thousands of $$$ in damage.
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