Tag Archives: Ductwork

Stilt Construction, Ductwork, and House Design Options

In todays blog, the Pole Barn Guru discusses stilt homes, ductwork in attic, and post frame house design options.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Pole Barns for Stilt Construction – Just read your Kitty Hawk story – And FEMA backs you up. From FEMA-DRs-4085-NY Foundation Requirements and Recommendations for Elevated Home – Piles can be used with or without grade beams. When used without grade beams, piles extend to the lowest floor of the elevated home. Improved performance is achieved when the piles extend beyond the lowest floor to an upper floor level, although owners should check with an insurance agent to understand how the extended piles will be rated for flood insurance. Using grade beams provides resistance to rotation (also called “fixity”) in the top of the embedded piles and improves stiffness of the pile foundation system against lateral loading. So extending the piling up as the wall structure is the way to go. Thanks for your site – just starting to look at building a RV style (really for a 14-foot tall boat) pole barn in a flood zone area. (recently downgraded from a “V” area fortunately). So I was interested in piles instead of the typical foundation anchoring. Need to install pilings under the concrete pad as well. Your site has been informative. Thinking about a 30 x 48 x 16 but need to work up a design I can get thru our HOA architectural review board. MARK in GREENBACKVILLE

DEAR MARK: Thank you for your kind words, as well as you doing research to provide an affirmation. For those who missed it, read more about stilt houses here: http://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2017/09/stilt-houses/.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Another design question. HVAC ductwork and trusses, Do I rest them on bottom chords? Suspend from top chord? Do I need to specify a higher dead load requirement to accommodate for gypsum, insulation, and ductwork? ROB in ANNAPOLIS

DEAR ROB: A downside of most HVAC duct work – little or no thought becomes involved in how to effectively insulate it. Wrapping ducts with a thin layer of fiberglass or radiant reflective barrier happens to be more for show than being effective. Unless your plan has roof plane insulation, I would place ductwork as close to ceiling level as practical and bury them within blown in insulation (I’d even pay a little extra for insulation to be thicker over ducting).

In cases where ceilings will be applied, we automatically increase ceiling dead load to 10 psf (pounds per square foot), covering weight of those added materials.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: My husband and I are planning to build a barn style dream house. We are in the process of looking at different styles and designs. We live in Mississippi, and are wondering if you have any buildings in nearby states that we might look at in person? MELISSA in MISSISSIPPI

DEAR MELISSA: Thank you for your interest in a new Hansen Pole Building. We have provided numerous post frame buildings in every U.S. state – including Mississippi. We also respect deeply our clients’ rights to privacy. As such, we do not disclose names or contact information of our clients, nor physical addresses of where our buildings are located.

Our website includes a plethora of building photos and within sound engineering practice we can provide virtually any post frame design. As our buildings are totally customizable. Your only limitations will be imagination, budget and available space. Please feel free to contact one of our Building Designers any time (866)200-9657 for free consultations.