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Old 03-05-2014, 07:22 PM   #1
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


My first post. I've read through several threads already and found some good pointers.

I am the proud owner of a 750sf 1948 single story cinder block house built on a slab! I have a metal roof and it is very low--a 2/12 is what I'm told. Over the last 5 years I have noticed a slight sag in the ridge and a more pronounced sag in one of the slopes (gable?), and a slight sag in the ceiling in my living room. I see no damage to the CB walls--no bowing or cracking. There are two small cracks in the ceiling but not major. Above the trusses there is 1x6 shiplap and below the joists there is 1x4 wood (sorry don't know the right term to use here).

The sags really bug me and I want them gone if possible. I'd like to do some remodeling inside the house, new drywall etc., but I feel I need to have the roof/ceiling issues resolved first.

I have contacted several contractors both roofers and general contractors and have had different proposals--some reasonable and some not so reasonable in their approach. I've found a roofer who for a reasonable price says he can remove 4 or 5 of the metal roof sections and replace them after the work is complete. The roofer introduced me to a GC who proposes to place a temporary 4x6 support beam under the bottom cord of 4 of the sagging trusses and jack the roof up. Once the ceiling is level (or as close) he will attach 1/2" plywood gussets to the raised trusses. He also plans to check at different points along the wall to make sure the trusses don't lift from the walls.

I'm leaving out a few details, but for the most part I think his approach is sound. My question is how fast should the jacking up process take? Is it better to gradually increase the height of the jacks over several weeks or do it all at once? The GC says do it all at once. I think the trusses might not be to happy about it. I'm expecting there will need to be some repairs to the ceiling but I don't want to have the truss connection at the walls to be compromised.

What are your thoughts? And thanks.
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Old 03-05-2014, 07:37 PM   #2
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


From what I see those aren't engineered trusses. It took years for that sag to happen and it isn't going back in any short period of time, if ever. I wouldn't touch it.

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Old 03-05-2014, 08:42 PM   #3
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


The direct answer to your question is slower is generally better.

The GC probably wants to do it fast because he doesn't want a potentially unstable roof system out of his sight, and he doesn't want to live in your house for the next 2 weeks.

Those trusses wouldn't be allowed in most jurisdictions today. The connections I see look like they're just some nails in shear holding things together. I've seen some home brew garage trusses done that way, but not a dwelling roof. Since it's moving, it will need stabilization. If it gets jacked, it really should be reinforced for jacking, then web reinforced when in position.
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Old 03-05-2014, 09:17 PM   #4
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


If your saying that in the last 5 yrs you are seeing the sags get worse or start to develop then I would be concerned...its about the lightest weight roof available.

At a minimum I would probably just get an eng to look at it and add some support in the attic based on the eng report.

The more expensive option would be to remove the roofing and fix it while the roofs off, it is a small roof. Or if its a isolated to an area address just that...this sounds like the road your going.

As for the jacking up slowly, i would ask the eng that. I would lean toward fast myself, but you want to be sure...hence the eng and his report.
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Old 03-06-2014, 09:19 PM   #5
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


I dont where you live but I wouldnt let my family live there after the winter we had without a new roof or at least reinforced with more than plywood. As a contractor i would only quote you for a complete new roof.
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Old 03-07-2014, 04:45 AM   #6
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


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I dont where you live but I wouldnt let my family live there after the winter we had without a new roof or at least reinforced with more than plywood. As a contractor i would only quote you for a complete new roof.
To correct the sag I agree. A new trussed roof with a greater slope. But that sag didn't happen over the last 5 years, rather 99 percent of it happened from 1948 - 1958 and as long as the joist retain the walls in position it isn't going anywhere like it is.
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Old 03-07-2014, 05:47 AM   #7
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


By far one of the biggest reason I see this happening is when someone removes a supporting wall to "open things up" and does not add the needed support piers and footings needed to transfer the load.
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Old 03-07-2014, 09:23 AM   #8
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Or when someone uses homemade trusses.
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Old 03-07-2014, 11:50 AM   #9
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


Well the house was built in 1948 when building codes were not so strict. I'm sure they were homemade trusses. The area within the living space where the sag is most noticeable does not have any bearing wall. We're talking about a space 8' x 24'. This is also the area inside the attic where the support work will take place.

The suggestion to talk to an engineer is a good one. I don't think we have one here on Whidbey Island, maybe there's a structural engineer chat room somewhere on the internet!
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Old 03-07-2014, 03:13 PM   #10
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


Pretty land and surroundings.
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Old 03-07-2014, 03:48 PM   #11
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If we read reply #14 in the thread Carport Posts we can get a pretty good idea why attempting to jack the roof up to make it straight probably isn't a good idea.
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Old 03-07-2014, 11:21 PM   #12
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


The creep and deflection in carport is on a beam. Your homemade trusses probably settled due to insufficient fasteners/rafters moved outboard/heavy concentrated earlier loads (asphalt shingles in small area), or whatever. Go with contractor #2, jack it all at one time, add the plywood gussets. Get a ladder and sight the gutter for straight... not sag, to check if rafter slipped off top plate. Give you an idea; page 179; http://books.google.com/books?id=bwt...page&q&f=false

http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=...6fTirapfPwoKzA

I'm sure your county will be involved, inspector gets a free ferry ride...

Gary
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Last edited by Gary in WA; 03-07-2014 at 11:25 PM. Reason: sp
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Old 03-08-2014, 12:24 AM   #13
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


The test of time is what always tells the true story rather than some engineering test of a few minutes. Start jacking if you like but you aren't going to do it on my house.
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Old 03-08-2014, 07:58 AM   #14
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Removing Sag from Roof and Ceiling


Here is a very scientific test that will determine how bad your roof is. Have someone go on your roof and jump up and down while you are inside under them. If you can stand there without screaming for your life for him to stop your roof is probably strong enough to repair.
I still wouldnt jack the roof up unless you are planning on leaving a beam underneath. Instead I would remove the drywall and lower the ceiling the ceiling the height of the sag. Hopefully your ceiling is under 20' wide so you can put up 2x10x20 ceiling joists spanning the whole roof. Knotch the ends so that the joists hang down only a 1" or 2" below where the ceiling joists are now. What ever amount the sag is.

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