Attic floor for storage

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by SarafAtak, May 10, 2021.

  1. SarafAtak

    SarafAtak New Member

    Hello! I would like to use my attic for storage, but I thunk I need to add some support to do so.

    Current attic
    - The total span of the attic space is about 6.4m
    - Current joists are 3x2 with a couple of beams that run above and perpendicular to the joists
    - there is a central supporting wall so I believe the largest span is about 3.2m between end plate and this
    - Some of the ceiling below is boarded over player and lathe (and some is just plasterboard)
    - nice high ceilings so there is quite a lot of space including vertical space

    - this will include old furniture (king bed dismantled) and a coffee table
    - various tools and bits of wood used for pride projects
    - unused dining chairs, clothes etc

    So based on the above i think i need to add in some extra support for storage. I've read a lot of forums about different approaches and thought it would be easiest to put in extra 3.3m 6x2 joists (slightly raised up from the end plates to avoid touching the ceiling). I'm fairly certain I can get the length through the existing opening.

    However I realise this won't work with the perpendicular beams in place (they won't allow the height of the new wood and it may not be possible to manoeuvre them in please).

    Do I have any other options? For example would attaching additional 3x2 to the existing joists across the span meaningfully increase the storage capacity of the loft?

    I assume I don't want to mess with the horizontal beam (not sure if this is a purlin)?

    Any advice here appreciated!
  2. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    The horizontal beam is a ceiling binder, yes you can add additional 3x2's alongside the old and screw them together for increased strength but I would look at introducing timber 'hangers' fixed to the rafters and joists to restrain the joists from sagging. Google 'cut roof components', specifically 'hangers, struts and binders' to see an illustration of what a hanger does.
    SarafAtak likes this.
  3. SarafAtak

    SarafAtak New Member

    Ok thanks!

    So I've seen a diagram that shows a vertical strut from the rafter to the joist. Do I just do this for each joust I plan to board over?

    Also, would I attach these to the existing ceiling binder?
  4. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    One every other would be ok if fixed near or to the binders, otherwise just do the area you need to strengthen.
    SarafAtak likes this.
  5. SarafAtak

    SarafAtak New Member

    Thanks again - I'm excited to get started!

    Just to clarify, would I be attaching to the existing binder or putting a new one down? Also, what wood dimension and grade should i use for this?
  6. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    As long as the existing is in good condition then fix to that or drop the hangers down in front of it and screw into the joists, or both.
    SarafAtak likes this.
  7. SarafAtak

    SarafAtak New Member

    I've been up to the attic and binder looks to be in good shape.

    Will you confirm just a couple of points before I get started?
    - Will 3x2 C16 be appropriate for the hangars?
    - I will use 8cm wood screws (2 through hangar into rafter and 2 through hangar into beam)

    Then I'll board over with chipboard or osb.

    Thanks again - this is such useful advice after many days of indecision!
  8. SarafAtak

    SarafAtak New Member

    Hey Jord - is it okay to just use a couple of screws in C16 2x3?

    Will that be appropriate to take the weight of the storage and a chipboard floor?
  9. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    Yes, 100mm 6.0 woodscrews will be fine.

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