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ElementalWindX 11-17-2007 11:29 PM

Trying to remove walls to make a room bigger (floor plans inside)
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Here is a before and after pic of what I want to do to the bottom floor of my house. House was built in 1998, and is 2 stories. I am curious as to how I can tell if the walls I want to remove are load bearing or not. Anybody able to help me out with this? Thanks.

glennjanie 11-18-2007 09:53 AM

Welcome ElementalWindX:
The only way you can tell for sure if a wall is load bearing is to look in the attic. Your house being built in 1998 probably has roof trusses which means none of the upper floor walls are load bearing. The trusses will bear the load from outside to outside walls.
The first floor is a different story; the wall next to the garage is most likely a bearing wall, especially if they used dimensional lumber for floor joists on the second floor. It is possible that they used floor trusses that can give a clear span also. If it has floor trusses, you will need to find the source of them and ask the manufacturer if they are 'clear span' rated. In either case the walls limitiing your Living room typically would not be load bearing. The Hallway and Extra Closet walls will not be load bearing if the joists run right to left on your drawing.

ToolGuy 11-26-2007 05:48 PM

Looking at that drawing, I'd say the bearing wall is the one running full length right down the center.

Hack 11-26-2007 06:03 PM

My suggestion would be to contact a structural engineer and have them come over and take a look. They'll know right away what would need to be done. Many of them will do the "quick review" free of charge hoping that they'll get the calc work out of it.

Cheers, and good luck!

inspectorD 11-29-2007 05:56 AM

So many posts...
Load bearing walls need to be evaluated by someone who is experienced...and actually standing in the house. That is the easiest, safest way to figure out if you have a load bearing wall. Within a structure you never know where a point load is. Something else could be carrying the weight of something it was never designed to carry.Then you remove it and the rest is a hospital memory...or worse.
This comes from over 25 years of experience as a high end re modeler of antique homes. And as a licenced home inspector and educator around the country. It is not that I know it all...But I do know what not to do, that is telling someone over these forums what to look for in a bearing wall. I might as when tell you how to change your electrical service while we are at it.

I am not trying to create an issue with this subject, I just remember covering this issue so much that we all should be on the same page.

You need an engineer , or other licenced , educated professional.

Climbing down from soapbox.....thanks for listening.:)

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