Opening up kitchen...


Old 05-10-07, 06:38 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: canada
Posts: 175
Opening up kitchen...

I was hoping someone could give me some advice on opening up a wall in my kitchen...

Here is the issue. I've been up in the attic and I'm basically 100% sure this is the center wall in the house that the roof uses for support.

That being said am I able to remove the wall and simply add support on either side of the larger doorway? I'd like to make it structurally sound. Where could I find info on how much bracing needs to be done?

There is a full basement below this wall. Do I need to look into whether that will be structurally okay with the larger doorway and in effect more load on less square footage below or can I assume since the floor directly below could handle the existing doorway that this one will be okay as is?

EDIT: If I remove the drywall to see what kind of header/studs are already there is there some kind of math calculation to figure out what kind of increase I would need to support the roof?
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Old 05-10-07, 07:27 AM
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 110
Every window and door opening in any weight-bearing wall in a residence has a 'header" across the top. A header is a beam sufficiently robust to carry the expected load. [Usually even non-bearing walls are built this way, as a matter of good construction practice in case someone alters the structure later.]

The header carries the weight above it to "jack studs" on either end, which carry the load to the floor.

When you widen the opening, the concentrated load delivered to the floor by the jack studs framing the new opening may well exceed the capacity of the floor joists immediately below. How much of a problem this will be will depend on how heavy the roof load is, how wide the opening is, and how robust the current floor structure is.

One typical solution is to place new steel columns directly under the jack studs in the basement, carrying the load to the concrete floor. Often the correct position for the columns happens to be in the most inconvenient place in the basement, unfortunately.

However, the basement floor itself at this spot was not originally built to withstand a concentrated load like this, and it may well be necessary to open up the basement floor and pour a proper footing for the steel columns.

You are probably going to have to get a professional [engineer or architect] in to evaluate the structure of your house and advise you on what will be necessary in order to remodel as you want.
Old 05-10-07, 01:11 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 6,389

Was your roof built using roof trusses or was it "stick built". This could make a difference.

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