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Wall Niche Installation in Potentially Load-Bearing Wall

Wall Niche Installation in Potentially Load-Bearing Wall

Old 07-25-14, 03:58 PM
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Wall Niche Installation in Potentially Load-Bearing Wall

Hi Everyone,

We would like to install a recessed wall niche. The niche is 18 inches wide, with 14 inches actually entering the wall. Unfortunately, there are two studs joined in an L-shape in the middle of where we would like to install and thus they need to be removed. You can see the studs in the picture.

We would like to figure out first if the wall is load bearing or not. The wall is 50 inches wide. This wall is located on the 2nd floor there is no corresponding wall underneath it and the wall runs parallel with the ceiling joists however here is no joist that runs directly over that wall. On the opposite side of that wall is a closet which is connected to a wall which runs perpendicular with the joists. I have included a picture of the building plans for reference. The wall in question is the one circled in black.

My questions are:
1. Is this wall load-bearing? If it isn't would it be safe to simply remove both those studs and frame a box around where the niche will sit?

2. If this wall is load bearing, would it be safe to install two studs just inside the opening of the wall niche along with a header in between them? As the niche is 14 inches wide the studs would be approximately that distance apart.

Thanks for any assistance.
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Last edited by RandA1996; 07-25-14 at 04:19 PM.
Old 07-26-14, 03:48 PM
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Those studs do not look structural to me. However, I would widen the hole and add studs on both sides of the niche.
Old 07-30-14, 07:23 PM
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This is not really a DIY question.
I would recommend you replace and patch drywall and abandon this project.
If you look closely at the floor plans you pictured, you will see that the "L' shaped 2 x 4's are supporting the right hand side of the door frame directly behind it. Also, on these same plans, you will see a dashed line over this wall. The dashed line has two boxes at either end that are marked with an X.
This is a Beam that is supported on both ends by posts that extend all the way down to the foundation.

Even if the beam could carry the load without this wall, you would still have the problem of how to support the right hand side of the wall behind it, the very short (wall) that the door to the closet behind it is supported by.

I Love DIY jobs, but this may not be worth it. A structural engineer needs to get involved.

The only thing I can think of to make this easy would be to get the niche as far in as you can without disturbing any structural elements. Almost like hanging a picture. Cutting drywall would give you 1/2", maybe shaving stud could get you another 1". The rest could be outside the wall.

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