Is this wall load bearing?

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  #1  
Old 02-07-13, 04:35 PM
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Is this wall load bearing?

I'm going to try to finish a couple bedrooms in my basement for my summer project this year. I uploaded a diagram of the area, as well as a photo of the wall in question. Here's the problem. Behind the wall in question, there is sort of a dead end hallway. To use that space, I was thinking of cutting out studs in the wall to make an opening for a closet for that room, or even bringing the closet further into the room, and using that space together to make a nice big walk in closet or something. Anyway, I can't tell if the wall is load bearing or not. I can put together a diagram of the whole basement if that would help. From that wall to the outside wall it is about 13'6". The diagram shows a little camera showing the perspective that the photo was taken from so you can get an idea of how it's laid out. If that wall is load bearing, is it still possible to make another opening in it or should I leave well enough alone? Sorry, this post was much more detailed, but the web browser crashed and I lost it all. The wall in question is the one in the diagram with the doors marked on it. It is perpendicular to the floor joists.
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  #2  
Old 02-07-13, 06:26 PM
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Need some more information: Who framed the wall? Does/did it replace a beam/column arrangement? What's the size and spacing of the ceiling joists? Are they each one continuous piece, or 2 members lapped/butted near the middle of the room?

Another door could be added, with proper headers and support framework. Keep in mind you will eventually weaken the wall if too many doors replace the studs that are carrying joist loads. Even to the point of visible deflection taking place whenever one of the doors is slammed shut.
 
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Old 02-07-13, 06:42 PM
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Looks like a bearing wall, pretty sure I see a double top plate.
 
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Old 02-07-13, 06:58 PM
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Need some more information: Who framed the wall? Does/did it replace a beam/column arrangement? What's the size and spacing of the ceiling joists? Are they each one continuous piece, or 2 members lapped/butted near the middle of the room?

Another door could be added, with proper headers and support framework. Keep in mind you will eventually weaken the wall if too many doors replace the studs that are carrying joist loads. Even to the point of visible deflection taking place whenever one of the doors is slammed shut.
Sorry I should have included more info. The wall was framed by the contractor that built the house. It was built in 2007, and the wall was part of the original construction. That right there told me that it probably was load bearing, because it seems that they only framed the necessities. So it didn't replace anything. The ceiling joists are spaced 16". They seem to be one continuous piece. It does look like directly above the wall, they have placed small pieces of ceiling joists perpendicular to the main joists, in between them, going the length of the wall. Not sure what that's for.

Looks like a bearing wall, pretty sure I see a double top plate.
And yes, you are correct. That is a double top plate.

Based on your responses, it sounds like it is load bearing. Bummer, I was really hoping to make a kick-ass closet in that room. Now to think of something fun to do with that useless hallway. Maybe a secret playroom for the kids.
 

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Old 02-07-13, 07:17 PM
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The ceiling joists are spaced 16". They seem to be one continuous piece.
Where do those joists end?
 
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Old 02-07-13, 07:27 PM
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Seems sort of odd that you would need a load bearing wall 4 feet from the foundation wall where the joists are resting at the far end. What's to the left of the wall?......is there not a beam with posts?.....another picture of that side would help. Is there a wall directly above on the main floor?


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  #7  
Old 02-07-13, 07:51 PM
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Where do those joists end?
They seem to go the entire length of the house, front to back.

Seems sort of odd that you would need a load bearing wall 4 feet from the foundation wall where the joists are resting at the far end. What's to the left of the wall?......is there not a beam with posts?.....another picture of that side would help. Is there a wall directly above on the main floor?
There's nothing else there. I just drew up a REALLY rough diagram of the whole basement. Every structure is accounted for. The thick lines are cement foundation walls. every other wall, window, and door is there. So here's the diagram. Again, it's very rough, not to scale, but it gets the point across.
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Old 02-07-13, 07:59 PM
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Ok I found a close representation of the floor plan on the manufacturers website. They have dotted lines showing a possible floor plan, but the only currently existing walls are the solid lines.
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Old 02-07-13, 08:06 PM
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It is definitely a load bearing wall......but.....if you want to use that dead space (hallway) as a closet in a lone room in the back right corner like you indicated in your first post......then you will need to frame out the closet door the same way the other doors have already been framed in the supporting wall. Just copy what is there......using the same size header and jack and king studs......for a rough opening for a door that is the same width.


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Old 02-07-13, 08:19 PM
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It is definitely a load bearing wall......but.....if you want to use that dead space (hallway) as a closet in a lone room in the back right corner like you indicated in your first post......then you will need to frame out the closet door the same way the other doors have already been framed in the supporting wall. Just copy what is there......using the same size header and jack and king studs......for a rough opening for a door that is the same width.
Ok so basically if I first framed out the opening to the closet the same as the others, so there would be a wall there, I could then remove the adjacent portion of the wall that's currently there, thus basically moving the load bearing wall back a few feet?
 
  #11  
Old 02-07-13, 08:23 PM
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Like this? As long as the wall containing the opening to the closet is built like the rest of the load bearing wall with the correct support headers and stuff, I guess it takes the place of the load bearing wall. Just build it first, then tear out the wall behind it.
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Old 02-07-13, 09:46 PM
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They seem to go the entire length of the house, front to back.
Doubtful, unless you mean only those joists in line with the garage.

Ok so basically if I first framed out the opening to the closet the same as the others, so there would be a wall there, I could then remove the adjacent portion of the wall that's currently there, thus basically moving the load bearing wall back a few feet?
Um, no. I don't see where you said you wanted to move the wall. That may not be doable, at least not easily.

Halton's advice was about modifying the framing within the existing wall, if I understand it correctly.
 
  #13  
Old 02-08-13, 05:41 AM
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If possible......try and work with what's there without changing the position of the bearing wall. You want something that will flow smoothly.....avoiding odd shapes and dimensions that would make it difficult to furnish.....and take advantage of the dead space instead of wasting it. Of course.....it all depends on what these rooms will be used for in your overall plan. Tough to see from here what exactly will work but it appears in the picture that the bathroom will line up with the garage wall so you may want to consider something like this......


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Old 02-08-13, 07:45 AM
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I do like that idea. It would be much easier. And to do that I could simply knock out one stud and replace it with a standard door frame with the double headers and whatnot. And can I ask what software you used to draw that? I'm sick of using MS paint lol.
 
  #15  
Old 02-08-13, 10:09 AM
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The online drawing program is here...... Floorplanner

You can add a closet to the second room as another option if needed.....see below.

And obviously.....you are not married to where the doorways are already framed in the load bearing wall.....you can locate a new (framed correctly) doorway anywhere and then fill in any existing ones that are in the wrong place.


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Old 02-08-13, 04:08 PM
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Thanks, that website is great. I do like the idea of putting the closet outside that second room. I'll have to see how it affects the room adjacent to it. I may end up making that area just storage, as it's so close to the utilities anyway, but we'll see. Thanks.
 
  #17  
Old 03-12-13, 12:32 PM
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Ok so I'm framing now. And I've decided to build a closet in that dead end hallway. My question is for the doorway I need to build in that load bearing wall. When it's all said and done, it will have a proper door with a good 2x10 header, but I will temporarily have to rip out two of the studs to build that door frame. Do you think I need to build a temporary support, or will that load bearing wall be ok without those two studs for 30 min or so?
 
  #18  
Old 03-12-13, 04:15 PM
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Since you're only working on about 3' of it, it will probably be fine if there aren't a couple of bookcases overhead. That said, it will be a mess if it does sag. I would throw the temporary supports in just for belt-and-suspenders.
 
  #19  
Old 03-12-13, 06:42 PM
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Yeah I decided to just throw a 2x4 in between the two I'm knocking out until I put in the king studs. Once I put in the middle stud, I nailed up my king studs. Once they were in place, I took out the middle brace, and put in my trim studs and headers, and it all went in just fine. I cut out the door portion of the bottom plate, and that was that. Only took my about 30 minutes, and it looks good. I used a 2x10 for the header, simply to stay consistent with the size of the doors in the rest of the basement, but they seem a little short. I think they'll only allow for a 79" door. Anyway, thanks, I'm pleased with it.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 08:04 PM
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I used a 2x10 for the header
Two lengths of 2X10 with a 1/2" piece of plywood between them, right? Did you need to fill in with cripples above that? That's the critical part of maintaining the load-bearing capability of the wall.
 
  #21  
Old 03-12-13, 08:24 PM
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Yes sorry I used two lengths of 2x10's. I didn't have any plywood, but I did use some 1/2 " shims in between them. I didn't need to fill in with cripples above, as I made my trim studs high enough so the headers went right to the the top plates.
 
  #22  
Old 03-12-13, 08:40 PM
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Sounds solid, so long as you glued and screwed the header together.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 08:48 PM
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He he, glued and screwed, no. Nailed together with many nails yes. I basically copied the other headers. Although they may have glued them, I can't tell.
 
  #24  
Old 04-10-13, 05:17 AM
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Load Bearing?

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Size:  31.0 KBI'm trying to determine if this wall is load bearing. It's approximately 20ft in length, has a double top plate, but doesn't have headers above the two doorway openings. That left me curious as to whether or not it is load bearing.
 
  #25  
Old 04-10-13, 05:27 AM
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I'm the noob here, but that header over door in some areas wouldn't it? The other question I'm thinking the others here might ask I'd which way are the floor joists going? Perpendicular to the wall?
 
  #26  
Old 04-10-13, 05:38 AM
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What about the larger opening? Would that have to have a header? I'll have to check on the floor joists. It's actually my brother in laws home.
 
  #27  
Old 04-10-13, 05:43 AM
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Floor joist are running perpendicular to the wall.
 
  #28  
Old 04-10-13, 05:48 AM
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My guess it is load bearing. But hopefully someone else will chime in.
 
  #29  
Old 04-10-13, 05:54 AM
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My guess was load bearing also. I have just never ran into a load bearing wall that doesn't have 2x10s or whatever else as headers. This wall just doesn't seem to be built very good.
 
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