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Afossas 03-17-2014 12:26 AM

Tore out drywall... Is this a load bearing wall?!?
Hi all! We were quoted 3k to take down a wall dividing our kitchen from the dining area. When we bought the home the inspector said our interior walls were not load bearing because we have a truss ceiling. So we decided to do it ourselves... But as we took the drywall out yesterday we noticed the top plate was double. Does this mean this wall is load bearing? It is running perpendicular to the trusses, but I thought truss roofs were supported by outdoor walls. What do you think? Please refer to pics below. Thanks!! We're looking forward to not wrecking our new home!

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joecaption 03-17-2014 07:48 AM

Not a great plan to be asking this question on any web site.
Really should have someone on site to look it over.
That short walls not doing much, but that over head beam in the bottom picture may be, and the right side of that short wall may be holing up that beam.
Need to be looking above and below the areas to tell if it's a load bearing wall.
A double top plate is only part of the equation.

Afossas 03-17-2014 12:51 PM

We are having a professional look at it tomorrow, but we just wanted to have an idea of what ya'll think so we can make a more informed decision when choosing a contractor. Thanks for your help!

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mako1 03-17-2014 01:02 PM

I don't see that "overhead Beam " bearing on anything in that wall.Can't see the other end from the pic.I'm thinking it is just maybe a soffit for the pass through to match the kitchen.
Double plate means nothing.If you double plate all of the exterior walls you also double plate all of the interior walls to be on the same elevation.

Afossas 03-17-2014 01:04 PM

Mako1, you are right. The beam on the longer wall is not really a beam... We just cut the drywall that way so we can run the cables in there and maybe install some pendant lights.

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Afossas 03-17-2014 01:07 PM

Here are some additional pictures

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DIYRemodeler 03-17-2014 01:09 PM

I agree with joecaption. Really, the best approach is to have an unbiased structural engineer evaluate the situation and make recommendations to you. After you have his/her expert opinion, then and only then I would talk to contractors. Asking some questions about load-bearing walls on this site is ok, but you can't expect to get a definitive assessment from members who have never physically examined your project. Full disclosure: I am not a professional. I'm just a moderately experienced DIY-er (25 years) who has had experience working with structural engineers. Yes, it will cost you $100- $200 but the advice and peace of mind it brings are worth it. If you want to become knowledgeable about load-bearing walls Google "determining if a wall is load-bearing" and you should find some sites with information to help you prepare for your meeting with the engineer.

TotalHomeworx 03-17-2014 05:15 PM

I remove load and non-load bearing walls all the time. You are looking in the wrong places for your answers. The wall it self will not tell you much. It's what is below and above. You must also consider if some one else has done renovations to the house and turned something that shouldn't be load bearing into something that is. You will save yourself money and sleep better at night after discussing it with a residential structural engineer.

Gary in WA 03-18-2014 10:41 PM

A picture in the attic above that wall will give a quick answer. If there is a web brace built in to the design for bearing point there or not.


scottktmrider 03-20-2014 04:15 PM

This question gets ask about once a day. Somebody needs to make a video showing how to crawl up in attic and if the trusses are resting on the wall its load bearing. and if your still un sure call an architect

Daniel Holzman 03-20-2014 05:57 PM

There are a few things to consider here. First of all, no home inspector has any business offering an opinion on whether a wall is load bearing or not. They are not paid to do that, they are typically not trained to do it, and the standard AASHI contract specifies that they should not offer any opinion as to structural conditions based on a home inspection.

The OPS indicated that a professional is going to look at the property. Presumably the professional is a trained individual competent to determine if the wall is load bearing or not, and presumably they are going to be paid for their opinion, and will have insurance to cover them in the event they offer an incorrect opinion and there are consequences. That should settle the matter.

The OPS indicated there are trusses in the attic. Some people are not familiar with what a truss really is, so they say they have trusses, when they really have stick framed rafters and floor joists. If the OPS really has trusses, it is a relatively simple matter to verify that the truss is not bearing on the wall in question. Of course, this requires someone to crawl up into the attic and actually inspect the trusses where they pass over the wall, which is presumably what the professional is going to do. Residential trusses are normally designed to fully span between exterior walls, hence would normally not impose any load on an intermediate wall, but there are exceptions, such as home built trusses, or trusses that have been modified or added on to. This is usually immediately obvious when the inspection is performed.

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