5 Top Laminated Veneer Lumber LVL Brands

Sawn Lumber vs. LVL

When you need heavy support, you have to look somewhere other than your local home improvement store's aisle of sawn lumber.  Structural members that carry the support of thousands of pounds of house need to be special:  engineered wood beams and joists commonly called laminated veneer lumber (LVL). 

While it is possible to layer up ordinary store-bought 2x10s and 2x12s to shoulder the load, LVLs do the same--and more--in a sleeker form.  Lamination packs greater strength...MORE in a smaller size, key to providing homeowners with the airy, spacious open floor plan homes that are so desirable today.

LVL vs. Glulam

LVL employs thin, veneer layers to form larger beams and columns.  These layers run perpendicular to the load.

Glulam is different.  It uses full-size pieces of lumber glued together under high pressure to form larger beams and columns.  

Where To Find

Following is an unrated list of common LVL manufacturers and their brands.

Homeowners will have a difficult time finding LVL at big box home improvement stores due to lack of customer demand.  Both Home Depot and Lowe's advertise special-order LVL, but in reality this product is not available through them.  Instead, your local, independent lumber yard should be able to order LVL materials for you.

  • 01 of 06
    Laminated Veneer Lumber or LVL
    Laminated Veneer Lumber or LVL. Getty / Huntstock

    Boise Cascade's two massive US-based plants in Louisiana and Oregon and its 66+ distribution centers make VersaLam one of the biggies in the LVL field.  

    This also means that VersaLam is your best bet for obtaining LVL if you are a residential consumer rather than a contractor with inside buying connections.

    Areas Covered

    Beams, headers, studs, joists, staircase stringers, rimboards

    Product Names

    AllJoist, BCI Joists, Boise Cascade Rimboard, Boise Glulam, VersaLam Beams & Headers,...MORE VersaStud

  • 02 of 06
    Weyerhauser LVL Beam
    Weyerhauser LVL Beam. © Weyerhauser

    One of the oldest West Coast names in lumber, Weyerhauser produces the popular Microllam® brand of LVL headers and beams.  

    At 1 3/4" thick and ranging from 5 1/2" to 18" deep, Microllam is a dependable workhorse LVL that covers many needs.  Double up a short, shallow piece of Microllam for a rock-steady door header.  Or double up a deeper, longer board for a room beam.  

    For weather resistant LVL for exterior projects such as decks, choose Parallam.

    Areas Covered

    Beams, headers, joists,...MORE columns, studs, sill plates, rimboards

    Product Names

    Microllam® LVL, Parallam® PSL, Parallam® Plus Columns, Parallam® Plus PSL, TJI® Joists, TimberStrand® LSL

    Manufacturer Site

    Weyerhauser Trus Joist

  • 03 of 06
    LP SolidStart LVL
    LP SolidStart LVL. © Louisiana-Pacific

    Louisiana-Pacific may have a small engineered wood division, but it is a friendly and accessible one.  Its LVLs range from 1 1/2˝ to 3 1/2˝ wide, with depths between 3 1/2" to 9 1/2".  

    Most importantly:  LP's outreach efforts at educating the trades on LVL, with copious product literature, case studies, and, via a partnership with publisher Hanley Wood, an online certification course called LP University.  

    Areas Covered

    Joists, studs, rimboards, beams, door and window headers, garage...MORE door headers

    Product Names

    Louisiana-Pacific LVL products all go by the prefix "LP SolidStart."  Thus:  LP SolidStart LVL, LP SolidStart I-Joists, LP SolidStart Rim Board, etc.

    Manufacturer Site

    LP SolidStart Engineered Wood

  • 04 of 06
    Roseburg RigidLam LVL
    Roseburg RigidLam LVL. © Roseburg Forest Products

    Based in the densely forested lumber country of South-Central Oregon, 80 year-old Roseburg and its several thousand employees produce a full spectrum of lumber products, from sawn lumber and particleboard to laminate veneer.  

    Its LVL division is small but substantial.  Thicknesses range from 1 1/2" to 7", with depths from 3 1/2" to 24"

    Areas Covered

    Beams, headers, studs, columns, stair stringers, rimboard

    Product Names

    RFPI Joist, I-Joist details, RigidRim Rimboard, RigidLam LVL...MORE Headers, Beams and Studs

    Manufacturer Site

    Roseburg Engineered Wood

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • 05 of 06

    Though you may have never heard of Universal Forest Products, this Michigan-based company does over $2.7 billion in sales annually and has locations all throughout the U.S.  Plus, it has gained a strong foothold in Australia.

    Areas Covered

    Beams, headers, rimboards

    Product Names

    UFP LVL

    Manufacturer Site

    Universal Forest Products Engineered Wood

  • 06 of 06

    Floundering Georgia-Pacific Engineered Wood has been looking for help for years.  In March 2016, Boise Cascade purchased GP's engineered wood division.  Currently, this group is in flux.  This entry will be updated when matters have settled.

    Areas Covered

    Door and window headers, floor beams, garage door headers, roof hip and valley beams

    Product Names

    Wood I Beam, GP LVL, FiberStrong Rimboard

    Manufacturer Site

    Georgia-Pacific Engineered Wood