What Are House Floor Joists in Construction?


Quick Answer

Floor joists are structural construction components that provide support directly under flooring, among other things. Floor joists are oriented vertically and run parallel to each other. Joists are typically separated at regular distances of 16 inches, from center to center.

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Full Answer

Joists themselves are supported by beams at their outer edges. Floor joists are typically 2 inches wide by 8, 10 or 12 inches tall. Joists are oriented vertically to provide maximum strength, and when pressure is applied, the top of the joist compresses while the bottom stretches. As the joist curves slightly, the bottom elongates and the top shortens. A joist's strength is determined by the extent to which the fibers at the bottom of the joist can resist tearing.

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