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Sorry for another one of these questions but here goes:

My house is a single story bungalow, built in 1976. I can't get hold of the blueprints because the city in which I live does not keep blueprints before 1979. The house has an unfinished basement and has a main support beam running under the width of the main part of the house. I want to renovate the house by opening up the dinning, living, and kitchen. This would involve taking out all of one wall and part of another. The one that will be entirely remove is pretty obviously not load bearing because, among other reasons, it runs parallel to the trusses. However, there is a wall that runs perpendicular to the trusses and it's the one I'm not sure of and wanted to get some advice. Yes I'll be consulting a professional but I'm looking for some preliminary thoughts.

In my diagram below is shown the dinning room, living room and kitchen layout in my house. The two interior walls I want to remove are shown, with the one labelled "Is it load bearing?" being the wall in question. The large area to the left of the interior walls is open from the back to the front of the house with no supporting beam. Trusses run in the direction shown and they are the same across the entire roof. I've verified that the "Is it Load Bearing?" wall has 24 inch-on-centre studs and removing the section I want to remove would mean removing 3 of 5 studs. The wall has a single top plate and does not sit directly over the main support beam in the basement. It sits about 1 ft off that beam.

Any thoughts on whether the wall is load bearing? Is there anything I've missed?

       Ext. Wall
   +----------------------------------------------
   |   Dinning Room     |   
   |                    |
   |         ^          |
E  |         |          |    Kitchen
x  |         |          |
t  |       Truss        |
.  |     Direction      |
   |         |          |    Is it Load Bearing?
W  |         |          +-------------------------
a  |         v
l  |
l  |
   |
   |   Living Room
   +----------------------------------------------
         Ext.Wall
  • What is “It” in this diagram? – Alaska Man Apr 23 at 18:34
  • Do you actually have trusses, or are they hand-framed rafters? – isherwood Apr 23 at 18:43
  • "it" would be the wall. – DaveR Apr 23 at 18:53
  • They are real trusses, not rafters – DaveR Apr 23 at 18:55
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I’m glad “you’re going to consult a professional.”

I’m sure he’ll check: 1) that all the trusses are identical, including the connectors, 2) there are no additional loads on the trusses over the kitchen area, like air conditioner, etc., 3) the floor beam is just for floor loading, (the wall does not need to sit directly over the beam in order to transfer the roof load to the floor beam, 4) the wall that is being removed is not for lateral bracing (are you in a high seismic or wind zone), 5) the perimeter footings are not reduced in size by the kitchen area,

Btw, it’s not just removing the wall...you’ll need to remove/reroute plumbing, electrical, hvac, etc. too.

  • Thanks Lee. Yes, all the trusses are identical and there are no additional loads over the kitchen. We are not in a high seismic or wind zone, so I think I'm good there. Just for my own curiosity, how can I tell if a floor beam is intended for more than just floor loading? What do you mean by #5? – DaveR Apr 25 at 16:32
  • @DaveR If the floor beam is grossly oversized, you’d suspect that it’s carrying more than just the floor load. (The joists would need to be slightly oversized too. ) – Lee Sam Apr 25 at 17:13
  • @DaveR #5 is referring to the width of the footings where they run by the kitchen. If the center wall is bearing, the exterior footings could be reduced in width. – Lee Sam Apr 25 at 17:17
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I had a builder come in to give me his opinion and he said that the wall could be removed safely. His reasons were

1) Trusses were the same across the entire length of the roof. The little diagram I posted in my original question shows only half the area of the main floor. The rest of the roof is well supported by other parts of the main structure of the house. (or something like that).

2) I live in an are where seismic activity is very low. While we can get some wild windstorms, the rest of the house provides the necessary strength to avoid shearing.

2) For the span of the area I want to remove the wall from, the trusses are designed to carry the weight of the roof without being supported in the middle.

3) The wall in question has 24-inch-on-centre studs, which is wider than the gap between the trusses so none (or few) of the studs sit directly under a truss.

4) The wall has a single top plate. If the wall was load bearing, it would have two top plates.

I asked him about the main bean in the basement but he said it wasn't a factor given the other reasons stated above. There are actually two beam in the basement supporting different parts of the house and they are both the same size. Also, all the floor joists are the same size.

As for other considerations, there was only electrical and build-in vacuum that I have to be deal with, which I have already considered.

Thanks for your help!

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