Thanks for reading my question!

I'm trying to setup a storage area in my garage. I have an RV garage which is 14.4 feet tall and no RV so right now it's useless space. I'd like to make a room above that I can store things in. Likely kids will be climbing around in there too so I want to make sure that it's not going to just fall apart on me.

The garage area is 14 feet wide from wall to wall and I'm thinking 12 feet from the back to where the area should stop. I would put ledger boards (is that the right word?) all around the edge and attach joists with hangers. Then put sheeting on top.

Here is my drawing:

enter image description here

So here are my questions:

Is 2x8 enough for this or should I use 2x10

If I can use the 2x8 it seems like it's less weight over all and I get 2 more inches (as my ceiling is only 14.4 feet when I divide that into 2 pieces every inch will count!)

Which way should the joists go? (across the short or the long dimension)

If I use 14 foot they are longer but I'll be using 2 more and they secure to the walls. If I span the 12 foot length the joists are shorter but will attach to the floating header (2 beams).

If I go the long distance from looking around I would want to put spacers in between the joists I believe.

Here is the layout of my garage. enter image description here

1 Answer 1


ledger boards (is that the right word?)

That is the correct word

Is 2x8 enough for this or should I use 2x10

2x8 @ 16" oc in the long direction of 14' will support more than 40 psf loading

Which way should the joists go? (across the short or the long dimension)

The short direction is typical as it allows for higher loading for a given joist size or conversely a smaller joist for a given load. Blocking at mid-span of the joist is necessary. In your case, to avoid a beam, which would likely be deeper than the joists and undesirable in this case, I suggest spanning the longer direction.

  • Accurate calculation. @rudtek What about access?
    – HoneyDo
    Apr 6, 2020 at 16:53
  • I have a question. If they run the joists the short direction then the front facing location has to support the ends of all the short joists. Does this demand a larger than just a 2x doubled up joist of the same dimension? It would seem to me that this long run would need to be more capable like greater depth or 3x or whatever.
    – Michael Karas
    Apr 6, 2020 at 17:15
  • Yes, you are correct and I lost track of where the door was related to the joists orientation and commented on the case where the joists were parallel to the opening. I have updated my answer to change the joist origination to avoid a beam that would be deeper than the joists
    – Ack
    Apr 6, 2020 at 17:32
  • I'm not sure there is going to be a door yet. If there is it will be off the back wall as a plan, but it could do it off the side as well ( right side of my image)
    – rudtek
    Apr 6, 2020 at 18:01
  • Are you responding to me re my comment on the door vs your use of front opening, or HoneyDos comment about access?
    – Ack
    Apr 6, 2020 at 18:03

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