This page includes links to all of our Lintel DIY How to projects. Browse through the below list and click on your chosen link to view the project information.
Available DIY How To Projects
So first for a lintel definition: for those of you who don’t know your lintels from your rafters. What is a lintel? Well basically, it is a supporting beam that allows you to have an opening in a wall without compromising the structure. The lintel is placed in the wall to spread the load of the wall from above the lintel down into the walls either side of the gap.
That support means you can have windows and doors in a wall, safe in the knowledge that it will not be weakened by having a hole in the structure.
Most lintels are made of steel these days, but others can be made of stone, concrete, or concrete reinforced with steel, and even wood.
To add or replace lintels, walls will need to be supported with props (known as Acro Props) to support the wall above the opening and prevent cracking and damage while the lintel is being inserted.
Sizes of lintels vary depending on the material they are made of, and the load they are bearing; which is turn is related to the size of the gap they are spanning and the height of the building. You need to make sure your lintels will do the job properly and that they comply with building regulations. A structural engineer will be able to give you advice on the size and structure of the lintel you need.
Sometimes lintels above windows will be covered by decorative mouldings, other times they are left visible, depending on the style and age of the building, and the material the lintel is made of. Older building may use window arches rather than lintels to support the wall above and spread the downward force of the load. These have the added benefit of being more attractive (but this is of course personal preference).