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Posted by jb on March 30th, 2001 03:25 PM
In reply to load bearing wall by Shon on March 30th, 2001 01:34 PM [Go to top of thread]

This is sort of one of those questions that forces me to say: "If you have to ask... you are probably not qualified to make this decision." I don't want to sound harsh, but you really shouldn't proceed unless you are 100% certain whether this is load bearing or not.

If there are floor or ceiling joists above the wall then there is a good chance that the wall could be supporting them. Are the floor or ceiling joists perpendicular to the wall? Is there a wall upstairs directly above this one. Is this wall on the first floor with a second floor above? By definition, a wall is bearing or not depending apon what it is holding up. What is above the wall? Are any of your friends or friend's friends qualified carpenters? You could have them come by to look at it.

You also should try to determine if there are any pipes or electrical wires in the wall. Carefully look at the under side of the wall from the basement.

If the wall is a bearing wall then you would need to brace up (re-support) the floor above while you did your demolition and put in a structural header directly under the top plate. If you didn't do this correctly you could damage your house or yourself. If it isn't a bearing wall then you can just cut your opening and box it out without a structural header.

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