Enter the volume of the building member and the density of the materials in that member into the calculator to determine the dead load.

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## Dead Load Formula

The following formula is used to calculate a dead load.

DL = V * D

- Where DL is the dead load
- V is the volume of the member/beam/etc.
- D is the density of the member/beam/etc.

## Dead Load Definition

**What is a dead load? **A dead load is defined as the weight of a structure that does not include the weight of the passengers or carrying. For example, a beam holding up a building would have a dead load equal to its own weight.

## Example Problem

How to calculate dead load?

**First, determine the volume of the beam.**For this example, we are looking at the dead load of a beam holding up a bridge. The beam itself has a volume of 10 ft^3.

**Next, determine the density of the beam.**The steel beam has a density of 493.18 lbs/ft^3.

**Finally, calculate the dead load.**Using the formula above, the dead load is found to be 10*493 = 4,931.8 lbs.

## About Dead Load

**What is considered a dead load? **A dead load is a load or weight of a structural component of a building that does not change over time. In other words, the load from that structure is constant.

**What are live loads? **Live loads are the opposite of dead loads. These are loads that change over time that act on a structure. For example, traffic moving over a bridge is a live load because it changes over time.