Brief overview of adjustable steel columns

Adjustable steel columns alias screw jacks or beam jacks, belong to hollow steel posts. The purpose of these columns is to provide strong support to the structure. A secured adjustable steel column threaded adjustment mechanism is employed to alter the height of the post with the help of a big screw.

They are frequently utilized in basements.

They are constructed as multi-part assembles, often known as telescopic steel columns, or as single-piece columns.

When a column is applied or set up improperly or its condition is damaged, the column becomes insecure. General faults occur due to persistent utilization of temporary columns, inappropriate installations and extreme exfoliating rust, all of which can cause abrupt collapsing of the column as well as the structure it supports. As a result injury and property damage will occur.

The following are possibly faulty conditions:

The diameter of the post remains under 3 inches as per 2006 International Residential Code (IRC), Section R407.3. Poles which remain under 3 inches go against the IRC, although they are not inevitably faulty. A 2½-inch post is sufficient to support the load over it, whereas a 4-inch post can buckle when the load goes beyond the structural strength of the post. Structural engineers normally take decision whether adjustable steel posts contain equivalent size.

Rust-inhibitive paint is not applied to safeguard the post. The IRC Section R407.2 defines:

All surfaces (interior and exterior) of steel columns should be provided with a shop coat of rust-inhibitive paint, exclusive of corrosion-resistant steel and steel treated with coatings to provide corrosion resistance.

Inspectors are unable to recognize paint as rust-inhibitive. In dry climates where rust is not happen, rust-inhibitive paint should not be applied. Visible signs of rust represent a possible deficiency.

The post is not straight. It should be checked that the highest lateral displacement among the top and bottom of the post should not go beyond 1 inch. However, endurable lateral displacement is influenced by several factors, like the height and diameter of the post. The post should not bend at its centre. Bending implies that the column is unable to endure the weight of the house.

The column is not mechanically attached with the floor. An inspector can’t identify whether a connection among the post and the floor subsists if this connection is wrapped with concrete.

The column is not attached with the beam. The post should be mechanically attached with the beam over to add extra resistance capacity against lateral displacement.

In excess of 3 inches of the screw thread are uncovered.

Cracks exist in upstairs walls. This condition may lead to the failure of the columns.

The following types of adjustable steel columns are commonly found - Single Piece Adjustable Columns, Telescoping Adjustable Columns

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Brief overview of adjustable steel columns