What Is Floor Load Capacity?

Spencer Platt/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Floor load capacity is a measure of the amount of weight a floor can hold while also preserving its structural integrity. It is measured in terms of pounds per square inch.

Floors must be capable of bearing both dead and live loads. Dead loads are the weight of the building materials the floor is holding up. They are static and permanent. Live loads are temporary and dynamic, and they are due to usage of the building. Examples of live loads are the weight of wind blowing upon the building or the weight of people moving across a floor. Total floor capacity is determined by the materials used to construct the floor, their thickness and the composition of the soil underneath.