Good Construction Software Makes You More Productive, Efficient and Accurate
Have you ever considered using construction software to design outdoor structures?
Whether you're a full time contractor designing and building homes,
or a do-it-yourselfer building decks or any other project - you have no
idea how much quicker and easier your job could be with some design
software to do those annoying but crucial calculations.
Ever tried to calculate. maximum loads on a deck or floor number of
posts joist spacing beam sizes and code compliant alternative materials
stair calculations, rise run, straight, circular, landings post or
Well, if you have or you are contemplating your next construction
project be it residential or light construction, get ready to fiddle
your way through various building codes, span charts, load charts and
But not if you have the right construction
software that does it all for you including material lists, and
engineering alternatives for different materials.
I have included a lot of free tables and charts on our site for you
to refer to help you out. And they are accurate but they are limited in
Have you ever tried to design the size of posts, beams and joists
for a deck that has to support a hot tub and 8,000 lbs of water and
It can be done manually but for the average person it’s a headache. And you’re always wondering if you calculated it right.
In fact here's a recent email we just received:
"I just bought a hot tub and I all ready have an existing deck with a cut out ready for it. My problem is it needs to be built up. The deck is too far off the ground. I need an 8'x8' deck built. It needs to hold 8ooolbs. That is full of water and people. Can I get away with 4x4 post or do I need to use 6x6 posts? Also how many would I need for this type of weight? Thanks for your help."
Greg Smith, North Dakota
These are typical questions every building contractor faces and you need
to get the answer right because the consequences could be serious. Here
is the answer to this common construction question using the Builder's Engineer software.
What Kind Of Construction Software Is Out There?
If you have been looking around at contractors, engineering or design
software to help you build or engineer your deck or other construction
projects you will find that there are a lot of programs available in the
low range of about $25 to $35 and then not much until you get to the
CAD programs around $900 and up.
The High End
Depending on your situation CAD engineering software programs may be
the best way to go. Especially if you are building for clients
everyday. You will pay it off in no time.
The Low End
Most of the construction software programs for home owners and
do-it-yourselfers lack a lot of the capabilities that you might expect.
They are designed to be basic and so provide a simple solution with
images and materials list.
Some of them are still pretty impressive and worth getting. You just have to decide what suits your needs best.
Is There Anything In Between?
I found one construction software package for common calculations
that I would recommend because of it's ease of use. And I am quite
impressed with the value. It's software construction people and
homeowners can both afford and will actually find useful.
For just a bit more than $35, getting into the $50 to $100 range -
the construction calculation and estimating software put out by Builder's Engineer.com is in a class by itself.
It is the bridge between the low end software that you might wish
had a few more options and the professional construction software that
can run into the thousands of $$$. You can get any of the programs
individually and downloaded right to your hard drive if you like or have
the CD mailed to your doorstep.
It's construction software that was designed by engineers but made
to be used and understood by everyday people. Whether you build full
time or you're a weekend warrior the cost is so low you'll pay it off
with your first project.
Here Are The Programs
A perfect construction software application for the home owner who
wants to just do it right, quickly and easily. Works for straight stairs
without landings. Calculates the rise and run, headroom, horizontal fit
and does it all in seconds. Learn more...
Pro Beam Calculator
Tired of using span tables? If you can even find any! This
particular construction software accepts up to 4 uniform loads at the
same time and gives you 20 different possible solutions for each run.
It takes into account different materials as well such as glue lam, parallam psl's and I-Joists all shown simultaneously. Learn more...
Loads Calculator Software
For the fellow building a deck for his hot tub. This would
definitely help. See how we used this construction software to answer
his deck building question about beam and post sizes for his hot tub.
Forget about searching through libraries looking for all this data.
It will calculate snow loads, roof floor and wall dead loads. Learn more...
Square Footing Software
What is the right size for your footings? Should you use steel
reinforcing rods? Know exactly how wide - how thick your concrete
footing must be to support your intended weight.
This little application takes care of all of that for you. The last
thing you need are undersized footings on soft soil and your deck will
gradually sink. A nightmare to fix. Learn more...
Wood Columns Software
The higher the post the more wobble and instability the post
develops. And it also is compounded by the load of the deck and people.
So this application quickly tells you what size of post to use to
build your deck sturdy. Very useful for elevated above ground pool decks
or hot tub decks. Learn more...
Each program shows you exactly how to use it. It explains all the
engineering and construction terminology. It gives you examples of
problems and shows you how to solve it.
If you have few projects to do over the coming year or two, it's
not a bad package to have as you will probably get your value out of it.
So far this is the best construction software I have found for the average do it yourselfer.