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Jacklyn's Forum Posts: 26

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By Jacklyn in Hillsdale, MI on 3/17/2006


I have a floor plan that was drawn by a draftsman using ICF for exterior walls. It is one story with a basement. Do I need an engineer for it? If so, what kind of engineer?
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By James in Spring Branch, TX on 3/18/2006


With your design having a basement, you might feel better having the prints check by a structural engineer.  Check with the ICF companies you plan on bidding the package some of the larger ones will have an engineer on staff or one they use.  Also check the building codes in your area, if you are in large city they will most likely have permits which will cause you to have your prints stamped by a structural engineer.
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By Tom in Stroudsburg, PA on 3/19/2006


Jacklyn, Your state has adopted the International Residential Code. You do not need an engineers stamp for conventional framing. That is where the roof load transfers to the walls that are supported by proper foundation. This could be exterior perimeter walls or any type of center bearing walls but they must be designed within the parameters of the code. Your footer can be anywhere from 12" to 29" wide based on the soil you are building in. If your draftsman showed full structural drawings (a cutaway view), designed your footer based on your soil type and you have no non-conventional items in your plans then you are good to go. If you have any non conventional framing only that portion of it would have to be designed or checked and stamped by a structural engineer. It is possible that your draftsman if he gave you detailed prints specified a multitude of footer widths to be determined after excavation but be sure it's built right the first time. Your foundation gets inspected and while I've never heard of anyone having to remove one I'd hate to be the first. ICF is a recognized building material within the code and has design specifications there a well. There are different types of ICF and they have different specifications. I agree with James that the supplier or manufacturer should have engineers available to review your design. If you still have doubts seek a licensed structural engineer. Mine charged me $60. an hour.
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