Help with unusual sun room construction.


Old 07-13-15, 09:57 PM
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Help with unusual sun room construction.

Hi, I am new to the forum, although I have read many posts before.
I have a sunroom attached to the back of my house which was constructed at the same time the house in about 1956.
When we purchased the house some years ago it seemed to be in need of repair but we were unaware of how badly it had rotted.

This summer I decided to open things up and have a look to decide if it is worth repairing or just to tear it down.
I guess the roof edge had rotted, leading to water soaking the wall with no way to dry off as it had vinyl siding over it. Then some carpenter ants set up home and excavated the studs and beams.
The damage to the back wall led to it collapsing when I put up some temperory supports which took the weight off it. However as that wall is on concrete footing it seem fairly simple to replicate.

There are two concrete footers which have twin 2x10x12's between them, then on each side twin 2x10x8's run between the two piers and the house. Everything rests on these beams. The beam between the footings Carey's the load from the roof and the side beams carry the load of the floor as the floor joists run parallel with that wall and the house.

My problem starts with the structure where it meets the house. I expected to find two more footings near the house that the beams rested on, or alternately that the would have some kind of mount to the foundation wall.
However the have neither, they "float" in mid air. After some head scratching I realized that the first stud of the side walls is attached to the house and then goes down almost to grade level where somehow they attached the two 2x10x8 the 2x4 stud is carrying the load up from the beams to the house.
This then has been somehow holding the floor up for the past sixty years. To me it seems unsafe but I can find nothing like it anywhere. I have attached some pictures.

Does anyone else know if this was acceptable practice back in 1955? Has anyone seen anything like this before? Any help would be appreciated!Name:  image.jpg
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Old 07-14-15, 06:21 AM
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I would not call that acceptable in any age and certainly would not pass modern code. Without seeing a picture of the overall sunroom my gut is saying to start over and do it properly.

I would look at the overall sunroom. Many are added onto houses where the sunroom was never considered. I would seriously look at your house and see if a sunroom is a good idea. Often the roof of the house is too low to do it properly but a roof at a much too shallow pitch is attached anyhow. You can get away with it in the deep south without snow but up north you just know there will be snow and ice and eventually probably some damming and water backing up under shingles.

A sunroom can still be added by you may need a more proper roof design. Then a proper ledger board or footers can be added at the house and pressure treated lumber can be used wherever wood touches masonry or is close to the ground.
Old 07-14-15, 06:56 AM
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I could see if this was built in the 1800's being done that way, but not in the 50's.
Do not often see balloon wall constution and 4 X 6's in a house that new.
Depending on what the rest of the building looks like there is a way to fix this.
Not fun, and not a great first time DIY project.
Post some more pictures of the whole addition on the outside, no close up's needed.
Looking to see what type roof they did.
What the pitch is and how it was attached to the house.
I've replaced at least a dozen of these in 100 plus year old houses.

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