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Old 03-09-2013, 06:19 PM   #1
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large bulge in wall - cause?


hi all

I'm on the fence about how to approach this problem. should I just repair the drywall, or should I call in a pro instead... and if I need a pro, WHICH kind?!

Our home has a stairwell with a wall that is 2 stories high. This wall has slowly been developing a bulge that runs at the 7.5-8.5' mark... right between the 2 stories. Lately, it has become so prominent that the sheetrock beneath is also starting to bulge and a large crack has formed at the seam where an adjoining second story wall/first floor ceiling meets this bulging wall on a right angle.

I poked my finger into the crack, pulled away 1" worth of drywall, basically fearing the worst... that a structural beam was sliding out of place and pushing the drywall outwards. At least at that point, that is not the case. The drywall was bulging, with a gap of maybe 1" from the beam which appears to be in its proper place. On the other side of this same wall, by our bedroom door on the 2nd floor, there is another fairly major drywall crack.

I read a prior thread on bulging drywall, and a poster stated that the bulge could appear if the drywall was insufficiently fastened, or the screws popped out. Couldn't tell you about popping screwheads... the upper 8 ft of wall is wallpapered.
What are the odds of that scenario in a 38 year old home? Is there another reason anyone can think of for this? I'm primarily worried about structural issues that could cause this problem... (I should mention that the dry wall I pulled away seemed perfectly dry)

Thanks so much for your input! This whole Dali wall meltdown is really concerning to me....
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Old 03-09-2013, 06:50 PM   #2
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large bulge in wall - cause?


No way to tell what's going on with those pictures.
Someone's going to have to remove some drywall to see what's going on.

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Old 03-09-2013, 06:54 PM   #3
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large bulge in wall - cause?


I guess what I'm asking is if/when I remove the drywall, what should I be looking for? what are the most common causes?

It's only happening on this one wall, and on the opposite side of this wall (bedroom/living room), everything is fine.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:06 PM   #4
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large bulge in wall - cause?


Could be a lot of things and you as a home owner DIY may not even now what's wrong when looking at it.
Were you one of the many effected with the last hurricane?
Once it's open up repost,
May have to call in on site pro engineer to look at it to figure it out.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:08 PM   #5
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large bulge in wall - cause?


Is that a concrete wall behind the lower area. I am assuming this goes in a basement. and the door jamb in the second pic is down and to the right in the first pic.

If so it could be the furring strips came loose from the concrete wall.

It is hard to tell what & where this is at.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:08 PM   #6
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large bulge in wall - cause?


So I guess I should call a drywall pro?

Obviously, I don't want this to fester any longer... it's getting concerning.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:09 PM   #7
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large bulge in wall - cause?


Quote:
Originally Posted by mech_gui View Post
Is that a concrete wall behind the lower area. I am assuming this goes in a basement. and the door jamb in the second pic is down and to the right in the first pic.

If so it could be the furring strips came loose from the concrete wall.

It is hard to tell what & where this is at.
this is between the main floor and the second floor. It's wood framing on top of a concrete slab (which is the floor of first floor). So the bulge is between the first and 2nd floor wood framing. and there is no comparable problem on the opposite sides of the wall (in our living room and bedroom)

Last edited by diy'er on LI; 03-09-2013 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:13 PM   #8
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large bulge in wall - cause?


Not sure why you would be calling in a drywall person at this point.
It does not take a pro to remove it.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:16 PM   #9
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large bulge in wall - cause?


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
Not sure why you would be calling in a drywall person at this point.
It does not take a pro to remove it.
becuase you just stated that if I removed it I might not even be able to determine what the problem was.... and I'd like them to see the drywall problem before analyzing possible issues with the structure beneath.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:17 PM   #10
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large bulge in wall - cause?


The crack by the doorway is probably nothing serious. I have cracks in the paint by the corners of three of my room and closet doors that run from the corner of the frame to the ceiling. It looks like seams are visible on your walls, like it's a bad drywall job, unless it's wall paper.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:21 PM   #11
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large bulge in wall - cause?


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The crack by the doorway is probably nothing serious. I have cracks in the paint by the corners of three of my room and closet doors that run from the corner of the frame to the ceiling. It looks like seams are visible on your walls, like it's a bad drywall job, unless it's wall paper.
In the pic w/ the moulding and the small hole that I just made you can see the upper half of the wall does indeed have old wallpaper (that I've procrastinated on removing merely because of the inaccessible location). That same wall paper is torn because of the crack in the doorway. It's a deep crack with about a 2mm gap at this point. I wouldn't be too concerned if it weren't for the major bulging 4 feet to the left / 7 feet below. Seems like the whole wall is shifting/warping on this side.

The thing is that this wallpaper and wall was fine for about 30 years, and then weird things began to happen. It has accelerated over the last several months.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:22 PM   #12
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large bulge in wall - cause?


Quote:
Originally Posted by diy'er on LI View Post
In the pic w/ the moulding and the small hole that I just made you can see the upper half of the wall does indeed have old wallpaper (that I've procrastinated on removing merely because of the inaccessible location). That same wall paper is torn because of the crack in the doorway. It's a deep crack with about a 2mm gap at this point. I wouldn't be too concerned if it weren't for the major bulging 4 feet to the left / 7 feet below. Seems like the whole wall is shifting/warping on this side.
What is on the other side is that the outside of the house? can you look down the house to see if it is pushed in?
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:31 PM   #13
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large bulge in wall - cause?


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What is on the other side is that the outside of the house? can you look down the house to see if it is pushed in?
my bedroom (upstairs) and my living room (downstairs). It's an interior wall spanning the center of the house (perpendicular to the roofline)

The living room, admittedly, has a built-in bookcase, that presumably could conseal minor wall abberations.

In the bedroom, there's nothing wrong with the other side of that wall! Looks fine! No cracks on the other side of the bedroom doorframe. No bulging or seam issues either.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:34 PM   #14
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large bulge in wall - cause?


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Originally Posted by diy'er on LI View Post
my bedroom (upstairs) and my living room (downstairs). It's an interior wall spanning the center of the house (perpendicular to the roofline)

The living room, admittedly, has a built-in bookcase, that presumably could conseal minor wall abberations.

In the bedroom, there's nothing wrong with the other side of that wall! Looks fine! No cracks on the other side of the bedroom doorframe. No bulging or seam issues either.
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Old 03-09-2013, 07:35 PM   #15
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large bulge in wall - cause?


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
Not sure why you would be calling in a drywall person at this point.
It does not take a pro to remove it.
Riper' down then we want to see!!

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