How do you determine if a wall is a supporting wall or not?

I have an outside utility room which I would like to remodel and I want to knock out one of the walls. It is not an outer wall, however, I am afraid that the wall is supporting and will collapse the room. How do I determine if it is a supporting wall or not without knocking the wall down and the ceiling caving in??

7 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    As a custom home builder- I'm not guessing.

    Generally, a bearing wall will always have the ceiling joists (visible in the attic) crossing them. If the joists are parallel (run the same direction as the wall), it's not a load bearing wall. The one exception is when you see some kind of bracing from roof framing that sits directly on top of the wall. This is uncommon but possible.

    If the joists cross the wall, it is probably a load bearing wall, but not always. To know, you would look to see if the joists have ends or joints resting on the wall. If so, it is definitely load bearing. If there are no ends or joints over the wall but the joists are long and the wall is located in the center area of them, the wall is at least carrying ceiling weight. Don't take a chance. If it might be load bearing, get a good carpenter or builder to check it.

  • eggink
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    right here’s the thank you to perceive a helping wall. do no longer assume that helping partitions are only made up of brick or stone. Even a stud partition wall could desire to be load bearing. in case you could benefit get admission to to the blueprints for the domicile it is in many cases a speedy and easy thank you to perceive helping partitions. If those at the instant are not obtainable there are some straightforward observations which will verify if the wall is helping. verify to work out what's above the wall. If the wall is on the floor floor then what's above it? If there is yet another brick wall then this wall could maximum truthfully desire helping by a metallic beam or comparable. If there is no longer something above the wall then you definately could desire to look right down to the floorboards and spot which way they run. in the event that they run around the wall then the wall could desire to be helping joists (a small beam arranged parallel from wall to wall that helps a floor, ceiling, or roof) in the floor floor ceiling. hence you will could desire to characteristic greater help. If the joists above the wall are finishing then the stone or stud partition wall would be helping the tip of the run of joists. those joists will desire helping in some incorrect way. A lifeless giveaway is posts in case you have a positioned up on your domicile, then this could generally be helping a ceiling.

  • 1 decade ago

    If there is an attic, look there to see if any construction bears on the area where the wall is. If there is a crawl space, look there to see if there is any foundation under the wall. If there is neither any construction bearing on the wall from above or a foundation below the wall, then the wall is not bearing.

    Also, you can look at the direction of the roof rafters. If the rafters are parallel to the wall in question, then the wall is not bearing.

    Check to see if there is plumbing or electrical wires inside the wall you want to remove. Dealing with these will complicate its removal.

  • 1 decade ago

    This is a hard question to answer without seeing this building and its structure. Since you are planning a remodel, you can call someone who specialises in the type of work you want to have done for a consultation.

    When they are there, ask them the question about the wall. Its important to know a sure answer to this before you start removing walls, or partial walls. You don't want to compromise the integrity of the structure, and hands on, or eyes on, is really the safest way to go....


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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Look in the Attic.. If the ceiling joist run ACROSS the top of the wall then it can't be moved without adding a header beam.

    NOTE: The size of the beam will be determined by the span of the joist and what the "dead" and "live" loading is.

    NOTE 2: Dead loading is the weight of the material itself. Live loading is what is stored or placed on TOP of the joist themselves

  • 1 decade ago

    if the joists run across the wall its not necessarily load bearing.

    it does however depend on the span and ceiling joist size and whether or not the joists stagger on this wall.

    you are not stuck with this wall, even load bearing walls can be moved , just with a little more work.

  • 1 decade ago

    You could use a stud finder and it will help you find the studs that are in the wall. Also if this room has an attic you can check it out from up there too.

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