I am wanting to add a divider wall in my garage to separate a work space from the parking area. I got a great deal on a 10 foot wide by 7 foot tall roll-up door. I framed my basement when finishing it, but nothing this wide. All documentation I have found on header sizing refers to load-bearing walls. This one will be self-sufficient and attached to existing walls and the existing ceiling. Any advice on how large the header need to be and how many jack studs?

2 Answers 2


You don't need a header, except to provide a "space" for your new overhead door to roll-up into. A header is to hold something "up". This is non-bearing, so you could use studs to create the space down from the roof (or ceiling) for the roll-up door to roll-up into. The load that you need to resist is the horizontal force on the "wall" above the new door. I'd use a double 2x6 laid flat at the head of the opening. (The door is not supported by the "header" either.)

I'd use 2-2x4 "jack studs"...just for stiffness on each side of the opening. (Technically, I guess they're not "jack studs".)

  • So in simpler terms, you're saying that I could just frame up the "cripple stud" region that would typically be above the header, and use that exclusively...and add additional rigidity support by extending it along the two outer walls. So in this scenario, the ceiling is supporting the entire load instead of the garage floor? Would I need to ensure my joists are rated for this new load? Mar 17, 2017 at 11:54
  • Since these two answers are so different I called the building inspector. He said since the roll up door is self-supported, I don't really need a header, but might want to use a 2x6 header just to prevent warping and settling. Mar 17, 2017 at 14:03
  • Is this partition wall perpendicular to the garage door? Will it divide the garage longitudinally? What percent of the width of the garage will the 10 ft wide roll-up door occupy? Is there a door there already that will be removed? I don't have any comment to add to what the experts here have made; I'm just trying to understand the project. Mar 17, 2017 at 21:22
  • I can't agree that hanging a wall without support is a good idea. If it was an interior wall, maybe. Not here. Also ,you don't know how high this wall is. It could be substantial, and without a header it's all hanging on the wall sheathing. I wouldn't build that way.
    – isherwood
    Mar 18, 2017 at 2:17
  • A 2x6 header is likely to cause more problems than it solves. It's not rigid enough to span 10 feet. It'll sag under its own weight.
    – isherwood
    Mar 18, 2017 at 2:18

Doubled 2x10s, either sandwiched or in a U configuration, and with a bottom plate to match the wall thickness (2x4 or 2x6). Even though it's not carrying a roof load, anything with less height is likely to sag.

If you wanted to go cheap you could use a single 2x10 and notch your pin studs down to the plate. It would still be stiff enough vertically, though it may want to bounce a bit more horizontally.

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