In this article, you will learn all about lintel such as definition, Why lintel use in building, lintel beam thickness, Types of Lintel And Their Uses in Building, lintel construction process many more so read article at the end otherwise you miss an important part of lintel
What is a Lintel Beam?
Lintel Definition – A lintel is a horizontal beam construct above any wall openings such as walls for doors, windows, ventilators, etc
The main function of lintel In any type of building to successfully transfer the load of masonry structure above the opening without damage and successfully eliminated structural crack near the opening
The width of the lintel beam is equal to the width of the wall, the window lintel and ends of the lintel are always built into the wall
Door lintel or window lintel are classified based on the materials used in the construction of lintel
Generally, horizontal lintel widely used in construction due to easy to construct and best suitable as compared to arches
Lintel Beam Size | Bearing of Lintel
The width of any type of lintel should be the same as the thickness of the wall and depth should be the minimum of the following 3 cases
- 10 cm
- Height of beam
- 1/10 to 1/12 of the span of the lintel
Types of Lintel Beam used in Building Construction
Lintels are classified according to the construction material used in lintel construction such as:
#1 Timber Lintel Beam | Wooden Lintel Beam
Before modern construction arrives, timber or wooden lintel mainly used in the construction of lintel
This is the oldest types of lintel beam
|Timber Lintel Beam | Wooden Lintel Beam|
But nowadays as technology is increasing day by day, new modern technologies have replaced Timber lintels
Although in some hilly areas they are using
If the opening demands more lintel length, then it is only achieved by joining multiple numbers of timber pieces. and the fact is that a single piece of wood is stronger and workable instead of the joint lintel
Sometimes, they are strengthened by the provision of mild steel plates on their top and bottom, which is known as ‘flitched lintels‘
Caution for use
- The strength of timber lintel is very low as compare to others
- Life (Durability) is short compare to other
- The cost is high because it demands high-quality wood/timber
- Unable to protect from fire hazards
- Lintel Length is restricted
#2 Stone Lintel Beam
Stone Lintel are a highly familiar type of lintel, for the most part where the stone is easily available. The thickness of this type of lintel is important in design consideration
Stone lintel is provided in the form of either one piece or more than one piece of a different type of stone
|Stone Lintel Beam|
Stones are weak in tension so there is a limitation of spam
The depth of stone lintel is kept equal to 10 cm per meter of the span, with a minimum value of 15 cm
Caution for use
- Dressing of stone required before using as lintel materials
- If the structure is subjected to vibratory loads then high chances of crack in stone lintel because the stone is Weak in tensile force
- The length of a stone lintel is restricted up to 2 meters
- Therefore, caution is needed
#3 Brick Lintel Beam
Brick lintel is normally taken into construction work where the opening is less than 1 meter and also where load coming on it is less
|Brick Lintel Beam|
The depth of brick lintel is varying between 10 cm to 20 cm which is dependent upon the spam length and constructed on the temporary wooden formwork
#4 Reinforced Brick Lintel Beam
It is the modified version of Brick Lintel
|Reinforced Brick Lintel Beam|
When the heavy load coming on opening also opening is wider then 1 meter the Reinforced Brick Lintel provided
The depth of reinforced brick lintel should be between 10 cm to 15 cm or multiple of 10 cm
In this type of lintel construction bricks are arranged in that manner so that 2 to 3 cm space is left between adjacent bricks lengthwise for the placement of mild steel bars as reinforcement
1:3 Mortar ratio used to fill the gaps between bricks
Mian reinforcement bar of 8 to 10 mm diameter is provided at the bottom of lintel which is cranked up at the ends
Verticle stirrups of 6 mm diameter are provided in every 3rd verticle joint
#5 Steel Lintel Beam
Steel lintel is used in the condition when superimposed load are heavy and opening of doors, windows are large
|Steel Lintel Beam|
These consist of a channel section or rolled steel joists
We can use one single section of structural steel or in combinations depending upon the requirement
When used as a single, steel joists are embedded in concrete lintels or cladded with stone facing to keep the width the same as the width of the wall
When more than one unit is placed shoulder to shoulder, they are held in position by a tube separator
The mason (worker) required some technical skill to follow the purpose of specification during the job
The steel lintel should be set back 3/8 inch to 1/2 inch from the face of the wall to form a mortar joint in front of the steel without cracking at the bottom. Never set angle iron on the wall until the masonry unit below it is sufficiently set to avoid sinking
#6 Reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel Beam
In nowadays, the lintel is made of reinforced concrete are widely used in any opening in any structure because of their high strength, durability, economy, rigidity, fire resistance and many more
|Reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel Beam|
Generally, concrete lintels use concrete mix design materials ratio is 1:2:4
The reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel are suitable for any condition due to flexible in design, loads and is not affected by spam length up to 2 meter
RCC lintel is cast-in-situ type so easy cast, desired shape and strength achieved
The width is equal to the width of the wall and depth depends on the length of spam and magnitude of loading
Main reinforcement is provided at the bottom of the lintel and bars must be cranked at the ends
Shear stirrups are provided to resist transverse shear as shown in fig
#7 Precast RCC Lintel Beam
Precast concrete lintels are cheap with high quality
No required extra time to cast and curing of concrete so save time also
Prestressed Precast Lintels are used to construct residential and commercial buildings
#8 Cast-in-place RCC Lintel Beam
When wall construction is finished up to lintel level then formwork is made on the wall for the lintel. After making formwork, concrete is poured into lintel formwork for cast linlet on site of construction.
Advantage and disadvantage of Lintel
- Pre-cast RCC lintel is constructed on the floor. So, we don’t need to build formwork up to the lintel level. That reduces the time to cast lintel. On the other hand, cast-in-place RCC lintel requires more time to make.
- Cast-in-place lintel requires more supports to hold its formwork during casting of lintel in place. On the other hand, pre-cast lintel requires only a few supports as it is poured on the floor.
- Cost – Pre-cast lintel is economical than cast-place-lintel.
- Surface finishes of pre-cast lintel can be better than cast-in-place lintel due to more accuracy and skilled labour due to repeated work so alternatively quality and finish ability are also better.
- As pre-cast lintel is made/cast separately, so masonry and lintel wall can be done simultaneously.
- The reason behind why I prefer cast-in-place RCC lintel is its bondability with a brick masonry wall. The bond between cast-in-place RCC lintel and masonry wall is very well. But pre-cast lintel doesn’t make any bond with a masonry wall.
Construction process of RCC Lintel
- Construction process of RCC lintel is simple and it doesn’t need much technical knowledge of construction. Anyone can make RCC lintel with little construction knowledge.
- Generally, lintel construction contains 4 numbers of 10mm dia bar inside it and stirrup should be 8 mm or 10 mm dia at 6 inch centre to centre.
- Normally, RCC lintel’s shape is square or rectangle and it is extended about 6 inches into the masonry wall. However, you should follow the construction manual for lintel extension-length into wall, concrete strength and also for reinforcement details.
FAQ 1: What is the Definition Lintel?
A lintel is a horizontal beam construct above any wall openings such as walls for doors, windows, ventilators, etc
FAQ 2: What is the main function of RCC lintel?
In any type of building to successfully transfer the load of masonry structure above the opening without damage and successfully eliminated structural crack near the opening
FAQ 3: How many Types of Lintel Beam used in Building Construction?
#1 Timber Lintel Beam | Wooden Lintel Beam, #2 Stone Lintel Beam, #3 Brick Lintel Beam, #4 Reinforced Brick Lintel Beam, #5 Steel Lintel Beam, #6 Reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel Beam, #7 Precast RCC Lintel Beam, #8 Cast-in-place RCC Lintel Beam.