Guide to Beam Ceilings

Post and beam homes feature exposed joists or beams which can create visual interest and bring individual flair to your home. Beam ceilings are normally made from timber but can also be made from other materials or combination of materials. They can add interest in an often neglected area and can transform the entire room, adding depth and warmth.

Beam ceilings can offer a warm and rustic look to any room, however, not all architectural styles are built to accommodate exposed ceiling beams. To know if this type of ceiling can work in your home, we’re going to give you information about beam ceilings including their advantages and disadvantages.

Types of Beams

There are many kinds of beams you can use when you install a beamed ceiling in your home. Here are some of the most common types of beam ceilings you can choose from.
Beam ceiling

  • Hammer-beams: This type of beam allows a lot of open vertical space in a certain area. Hammer-beams are short horizontal and vertical beams that are bracketed to the walls to be able to support the roof.
  • Boxed beam: These beams are arranged in a waffle-type pattern. It looks similar to coffered ceilings in a square or rectangular pattern and it also looks good either painted or stained.
  • Wood Faux beam: A faux wood beam is basically a hollow, three-sided box that gives the look of a weight-bearing beam but it’s really not heavy. This is great for beginners and for small rooms as well. But you might need to finish or paint the faux beams first before installing them.
  • Polyurethane Beams: This type of ceiling beam is made of polyurethane which is lightweight and can also deal with earthquakes. This is a great type of beam for those who are not confident with their woodworking skills. You can also paint or stain them the same way you can on real wood.

Materials and Finish

When it comes to the materials for beam ceilings, there are numerous choices available on the market. They can be made of wood, metal, plastic, foam, or resin. You can also pick from real, solid wood to faux wood designs. They are also available in straight, curved, and lofted appearances, giving you more options to achieve the design you want.
Old-fashioned Beam Ceiling
The materials that you will choose to use in your exposed beam ceiling and as well as the finish will make a difference to the feel of a room. For example, using metal beams can give a room an industrial finish while using exposed oak beams can create a French Provincial feel.

If you choose stained beams, you have to make sure that the quality is good enough for it to work as a visual feature. The same thing applies if you choose to use beams to create geometric patterns on your ceiling. Make sure that your design is clearly planned and that it is constructed accurately.


Advantages of Beam Ceilings

Decorative beams can definitely add some interest to your home. And aside from that, they come with a lot of benefits as well. Here are some of the advantages you can get from beam ceilings.
Beam ceiling

  • Great for extremely high ceilings: Decorative beams can bring the scope of the room down a bit while providing interest.
  • Can enhance the ceiling: Adding decorative beams to the ceiling can enhance a number of home designs from farmhouse to Tuscan. You just have to make sure that you choose a textured beam that works with the style of the room to complete the design.
  • Can add value to your home: Beam ceilings create a dramatic visual impact to an area and they can also add an individual touch to your home. They can be made to suit a variety of styles as well. With these, it will also be able to add resale value to your home.

Disadvantages of Beam Ceilings

Wooden Beam Ceiling
Though beams are great decorative add-ons to ceilings, they come with a few disadvantages as well. One is it can make a room feel less intimate, especially on high ceilings, and it can overpower small rooms with its intricate look as well. There is also less insulation in a room with a beamed ceiling, meaning, it will cost you bigger on heating and cooling. Installing a beamed ceiling can become very expensive as well because the materials and workmanship must be of a high standard to make it look really wonderful.

Beam ceiling

Beam ceilings are definitely a strong design element which can affect the sense of size and height in a room. And no matter what materials and designs they are created, they can surely add to the décor and the perceived size of the space they preside over. We hope the information we shared will help you decide if a beamed ceiling will be great for your home.