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Old 11-08-2011, 02:05 PM   #1
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


I am adding a double door to the first floor 2x4 exterior wall of a two story house. The rough opening is 76 inches wide by 82.5 inches high. The wall is 9 feet tall. I attached the header to the top plate and framed down. The header is a double 2X10 with three jack studs at each end reaching up to the header. 2x4 framing down to the door (approx 8 inches).
Is this an acceptable placement of the header and use of jack studs to meet code?


Last edited by xhudak; 11-08-2011 at 04:34 PM. Reason: more information to better present post
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Old 11-08-2011, 04:43 PM   #2
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


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Originally Posted by xhudak View Post
I am adding a double door to the first floor 2x4 exterior wall of a two story house. The rough opening is 76 inches wide by 82.5 inches high. The wall is 9 feet tall. I attached the header to the top plate and framed down. The header is a double 2X10 with three jack studs at each end reaching up to the header. 2x4 framing down to the door (approx 8 inches).
Is this an acceptable placement of the header and use of jack studs to meet code?
Call your building inspector and ask him/her. They have to inspect it anyway. Who told you what size header to use?

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Old 11-08-2011, 06:57 PM   #3
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


As far as res. building code it's fine. Alot of guys "cripple down". I prefer to put my header at door high and "cripple up" but it makes no difference. As far as header size- some areas allow sandwich headers like you described and some do not. Some require engineering, others do not. As was stated above- ask the building dept.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:19 PM   #4
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


I think there are plenty of places were you can get by without an inspection for just changing out a door. but since the OP asked about code, ask the local building dept.

cripple up woulds seam a bit more stable than cripple down, but with triple jacks and an 8" cripple, that shouldn't be an issue.

Last edited by forresth; 11-09-2011 at 10:31 PM.
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Old 11-09-2011, 09:32 PM   #5
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


I'll make it unanimous, ask locally. Here, our seismic zone requires flat steel strapping tying the upper and lower horizontal framing of the window-two studs back on both sides for wall continuity.

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Old 11-10-2011, 07:21 PM   #6
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


when i install large patio doors i use double jacks to ensue the header is properly supported, the header gets cut a little bit longer than actually required, this is so i can shift the exact location of the door if required based on the stair location of a yet to be built deck or as per client request. code doesnt allow us to cripple the header down.. any loads the header will be carrying must be directly on the header other than double top plates, also its more work to shift a rough opening if the header is crippled down, regarding header size and plys. with larger rough openings a triple ply header is sometimes required if there are point loads from above which will be landin on it. ive had to use 2 ply lvl in some situations

not arguing.. just stating methods i was taught

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Old 11-10-2011, 08:58 PM   #7
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header placement at top plate of exterior wall


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Originally Posted by woodworkbykirk
when i install large patio doors i use double jacks to ensue the header is properly supported, the header gets cut a little bit longer than actually required, this is so i can shift the exact location of the door if required based on the stair location of a yet to be built deck or as per client request. code doesnt allow us to cripple the header down.. any loads the header will be carrying must be directly on the header other than double top plates, also its more work to shift a rough opening if the header is crippled down, regarding header size and plys. with larger rough openings a triple ply header is sometimes required if there are point loads from above which will be landin on it. ive had to use 2 ply lvl in some situations

not arguing.. just stating methods i was taught
That's how I like to do it as well, all though in las Vegas (Clark county) they do not allow laminated headers. That's the only place I've ran into that though.
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Old 11-10-2011, 09:31 PM   #8
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thats right, you guys have to use a single peice of wood correct.. 4x10's and what not.

ive never done it, how is the lumber when it comes to being true.. as per no warping, severe cupping and what not
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Old 11-10-2011, 09:52 PM   #9
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Some of them were dimensional lumber 4x10 and what not but most were 3 1/2 lvl or paralam. It was crazy down there. I was framing 8-10 houses at a time so my cut & buck crew would cut all the headers for the whole release at one time and then roll on to the next tract. Headers were always ending up in the wrong spot or sometimes the wrong house. It's hard to keep track of everything when there's 200 guys framing everything at once.
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Old 11-11-2011, 04:38 PM   #10
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i couldnt imagine doing that sorta thing. im use to framing custom homes and large addtions where its one crew doing the entire job form to finish... the only hands touching lumber that dont install are the labors who take it off the truck or carry it over to the cut man.

its always the same guy laying out everything structural.. backframing though which ever two guys are building that wall will lay it out.. also our crew had 7 guys all of which were specialists in different things .. we had 2 master framers, 2 master siders one of which also does foundations. a cabinet builder. myself who oversaw the trim
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Old 11-11-2011, 05:13 PM   #11
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Ya that's the first and only time I've done "stage" framing. It's a different crew for everything. Snap and layout, platers, detalers, framers, sheaters, joist and truss, elevations (window wraps, arches ect.) pick up. And then I had about 30 hourly guys to go and fix everything the piece workers would miss. It was a whole different world.
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Old 11-11-2011, 09:12 PM   #12
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ive heard of this being done in western canada and parts of ontario..

with us when a room is presumed to be complete for finish, one guy will do a walk through check everything from missing backers, strapping nailed off. check for point loads.. laminated beams and posts properly nailed off etc.

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