breakfast bar in load bearing wall.

10 Replies

Question here is I have a load bearing wall I want to put an opening in it from the kitchen to the living room. The pics are of the living room wall with the air return hole and the other two are inside the wall looking to the top. there appears to be a 2x4 header however I am wanting to cut down about a foot and a half run  new 2x4 studs against the existing stud and put up a new header consisting of 2 2x4s about 6 ft long  to hold across the top of the breakfast bar. however I need to make sure this is sufficient there is no second floor just an attic above the wall. any one have any knowledge of this kind of situation. hope I made sence here.

Generally a header will be 2, 2x8's minimum.  I'd put two 2x4's under each end, sistered to an adjoining full height stud.

ok sister 2 2x4s to an adjoining stud and then sister 2 2x8 across for support. that sounds very sturdy for the small space that I am going thanks.

i would use 2x6 or 2x8  for a 6ft opening.   add 2 jack studs and set your header on top of it.   2- 2x6 or 8 with 1/2 osb or plywood in the center.   that is the correct way to do it and will only cost you a few more dollars over a 2x4 

Jeremy I didn't even think about jacks and will the 2x6 with the 1/2 osb make the wall protrude any?

Your load is most likely very little since there is no living space above the wall. Even though it may be little I would not use a 2x4's for the header/beam. I would use a 2x8 with the plywood/osb in between as Jeremy suggested. Things to search for on google would be king stud, jack stud, header, and beam. You can easily come up with some images to give you an idea on how it should be framed. One thing to remember is not to just set the jack studs on your floor or bottom plate. You changed the way the load is distributed and therefore that weight needs to be correctly supported. Make sure under your jack stud is correctly supported.

No the 2x6 with the 1/2 plywood in the middle will make it the exact same width as the existing 2x4 studs.   

Ok Andy Strum I will search those things and take a look and Jeremy Gunn I for got to take into account that the boards are not exactly 2x6 so that makes sense. I have don't pretty much every renovation I can think of just never messed with a load bearing wall and the thought was kind of overwhelming for a min.

Andy Strum thanks for the search tips there were a couple pic's of exactly what I need to do seeing the pic brings it all together now not as bad as I was thinking it was going to be.

For the small amount of work its really going to cost you I would consult with a structural engineer. Of course when it comes to load bearing walls they should be designed by a structural engineer and you should get a permits but if you really want to be a do it yourselfer at least consult a structural engineer. He may not even charge you for what it will take to call him and post a simple question. 

John is the attic framed with trusses or is it stick built? You might not have a bearing wall.

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