Spanning a wall 12', Header Questions


Old 10-11-15, 08:24 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2015
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Spanning a wall 12', Header Questions


First of all I want to start by stating I am researching this idea right now and realize that I will need a structural engineer to confirm this process. I'm looking for some general information on this to see if what I want to do is even feasible. My house was built like a manufactured home I spoke with a local inspector when I bought the house and he confirmed that while it was built like a manufactured home it is technically considered a stick built. I guess the local construction company that built this back in the 70s used to prebuild many sections and then trailer them out to the sites. Anyhow I have a split level house the ground level (Crawl below nothing above) I want to open the living room up to the kitchen more, currently there is a 4' opening I'd like to bring it to 12'. I've been up in the attic and noticed the trusses would be considered Mono trusses instead of spanning all of the way accross the house as a standard truss they appear to end in the center to me this means that not only are my side ways load bearing but now so is the center wall. In a standard ranch with standard trusses I would not have seen any problem spanning 12' but this is a bit more concerning to me. Does anyone have any thoughts and/or insight they can give me on this? As stated I'm just in the research stage right now trying to determine if this is something I want to tackle later this year or not. Any more info needed let me know and I'll update.
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Old 10-11-15, 10:36 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

You currently have a 4' opening and want to expand that to 12'.

Do you just want to remove the wall from floor to ceiling or are you planning to add a header across the 12' opening ? Or are you asking... will you need to have a header.
Old 10-11-15, 10:41 AM
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If the wall you want to open is load bearing you not only need to consider the header but also the posts at either end and what's underneath (like a footing). It is generally not acceptable to add support columns or posts and simply rest them on the floor or slab below because of the high load they carry.
Old 10-11-15, 11:42 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2015
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Thanks, glad to be here! Yes, currently have a 4' opening want to expand it to 12'. I know a header will be needed for sure it's just the trusses on this house are so weird so I'm concerned on how much weight is actually on that center wall vs on the outside walls with most trusses.

As far as my plan would be eventually (after I get confirmation of what will be needed) Put a support temp support wall on both sides of the planned removal area. Remove the 8' section of wall add in some support sections and a 12' header, remove the temp wall.


Thanks my concern is the load bearing part. On standard contruction I'd consider this to only be holding the weight of the ceiling and since no 2nd story above I don't think it would be that bad. However because of the construction I do believe that its also supporting some of the roof and that's what I'm not really sure about. The trusses are basically 2 triangles bolted together in the center (Figure two mono trusses bolted together about this wall) It appears the house was brought in, in sections.

The nice thing about that though is that the floor has every support already built into it (4 - 2x6 trusses all bolted together, 2 per side) Also the nice thing is directly below the one side of where the 12' span would stop is a block support and on the otherside of the span there is a block wall with footer so I don't feel any need for additional ground support.

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