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Old 04-23-2008, 06:05 PM   #1
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Rotten ceiling joist, top & cap plate and studs


I have a mess to fix which involves an old leak in the front room of a house I just purchased. Rain and mold over the years have rotted a ceiling joist, the top and cap plate that support the joist are rotted as well as a few of the wall studs. My plan is to build some joist supports about 2 feet from the wall with vertical 2x4's. Once supported, I plan on cutting out and replacing the cap plate, top plate (horizontal 2 x 4's) and wall studs. Once this is done, I will sister a new ceiling joist by spanning the two load bearing walls (easy access via attic). Sounds easy enough. My only question is where to cut the current cap and top plate. I was thinking of cutting them at the good 2 x 4 studs (outer ones in the troubled area). Sistering new studs to these outer ones and lay the new 2 x 4's on top of these new sistered studs. Does this sound correct. Are there any structural issues with cutting the top and cap plate. I was planning on attaching a picture of the area, however I can't get the file size small enough to upload.
Thanks in advance.
Chuck.

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Old 04-23-2008, 07:16 PM   #2
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Rotten ceiling joist, top & cap plate and studs


Not a pro, but I'm sure some will chime in........

It would be best to maintain some overlap of two plates. You don't want to slice one cut through both, regardless of the stud config at the seam. This would give you a hinge point at the joint. I had an inspector roll through and tell me to strap any plates with less than 4' of overlap. I don't know the specific code requirements, but I'm sure somebody here will.

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Old 04-23-2008, 07:49 PM   #3
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Rotten ceiling joist, top & cap plate and studs


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Originally Posted by steve1234 View Post
Not a pro, but I'm sure some will chime in........

It would be best to maintain some overlap of two plates. You don't want to slice one cut through both, regardless of the stud config at the seam. This would give you a hinge point at the joint. I had an inspector roll through and tell me to strap any plates with less than 4' of overlap. I don't know the specific code requirements, but I'm sure somebody here will.
Thanks, the overlap sounds like a good idea.
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Old 04-24-2008, 10:57 AM   #4
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Rotten ceiling joist, top & cap plate and studs


On a load bearing wall, an overlap of a couple feet would be ideal. If you can't get that, no big deal. Get a Simpson or USP strap, such as an LSTA16. That is a 16" strap with a lot of nail holes that is designed to restore the tensile strength to a spliced top plate. You need to get about 6 nails (code requires 16d's, but 12d's would be just fine in my opinion) on each side of the splice, as far from the cut end grain as is reasonably possible. Do not use screws on this type of plate!

Bear in mind that you shouldn't splice a plate that is supporting anything that isn't directly bearing on the studs. So, if your joists are sitting on the plate somewhere between the studs, you need to splice at the studs or add a stud underneath the joist to support it. I assume you have two top plates. If one is spliced, the loads must still stack. One solid plate and one spliced one is not adequate to support much of anything.
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