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MrShadetree0222 11-04-2008 12:40 AM

Broken roof truss/support help needed please! Pictures included!
Hey I was in the attic the today and noticed a cross beam broken/cracked in half, by my assesmnet it is a cross support for the roof truss's that stands atop parallel load bearing walls. I have inclosed a image I made up of the broken beam, and need some suggestions as to how to or what to do as a do it yourselfer!

I am not an artist, there fore do not insult me for my non-artistic value, it is mearly just something to give you a better idea as to what I am talking about!
In the image i have made up you will see the main structure of the home in black, and you will see the upstairs load bearing walls in red, and the green beam is the cross beam i am speakign in reference to! This beam is cracked about half the length of the width of the span (@14ft from load wall to load wall)

Now simple math tells me the one out of 24 of these beams is not going to hurt that much, but I would rather go ahead and resolve the problem now then wait till a foot of snow up thier and it fall in to find out I was wrong in my calculations!

This beam is a true 2"X4" beam, and it is not only cracked but seperated if that makes sense to you, at the west side of the beam their is as much as a 2 1/2 inches gap in the center of the 2x4, to about half the span where the gap closes to 0"s this is a main entry into the attic/crawl way. I also have noticed that thier isnt anything tying these beams to the roof trusses above, shouldnt thier be a vertical tie, connecting the leanto's/roof trusses to this beam? This is a 86 yr old house maybe they didnt know to use vertical ties back then! lol! I believe i will add them later in time but right now i do need to deal with the broken beam at this minute!

Welp lets see what you guys/gals got to offer, any and all suggestions will be considered. If anymore information is needed to better assess the situation then let me know I will explain or draw to the best of my ability!

buletbob 11-04-2008 05:14 AM

Hello Mr Shadetree. Let me start by clarifying that you don't have any trusses up in your attic space. as far as I know they where not around in the 20"s. your home was most likely conventional framed. the 2x4 your speaking of would be considered a ceiling beam you say its next to the attic access hole leading to the upper area sounds as tho the beam broke do to the fact that there could of been much weight imposed on it from either kneeling on it or moving heavy boxes across it.
What you can do is support the ceiling from below, to remove any sag that might have occurred. and cut and install a new 2x4 or 2x6 if height is not an issue. install it along side the broken one with construction adhesive and some good quality deck screws. Or just remove the broken beam and replace it. which will intail spackling and painting of the ceiling.
I don't think the beam broke from any stress applied to the roof, it was just under sized for the purpose it is now serving.( attic floor beam) Good luck BOB.

MrShadetree0222 11-04-2008 08:18 AM

Good morning and thank you for your responce buletbob, i do appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post! Yes i knew they were not roof trusses in the 20's just didnt know what else to call them to get my point across of were i was speaking of, I always either knew of roof lines being done in a 'Lean-To' or a 'Truss' application.

Ok well on the side that is broken it is directly above the openeing to the stairwell on top, so not sure how i am going to go about supporting the ceiling from below, coul di not just remove the broken beam, without providing any support from underneath? I mean the removal (of old beam), and installation(of new beam) shouldnt take no more then a few minutes would it hurt anything to go ahead and do this floating" so to say? I am working on 16" centers so i would have the ability to straddle the broken beam while working in that area? TOO RISKY? gIVE ME MORE TIPS AND SUGGESTIONS IF I AM THINKING THE WRONG WAY!

buletbob 11-04-2008 07:17 PM

Yes you could! as long as they are 16" OC and there is no stored items and loose insulation on the ceiling. this could slow things down abit. Yes you should be all right. Good luck BOB

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