I am doing a pretty significant garage renovation and had a couple questions.

I was originally going to just replace the loft (the original wasn't supported on top the stud wall on side which always bothered me), but I've decided to do without the loft and just open up the garage a bit. I had a couple of friends come by with building experience and they've suggested removing the trusses from the garage and just doubling up on the collar ties.

The garage is about 10.5' wide by 26' long. Here are some photos:

This is the old loft, I apologize for the mess and wires in the photo

Here is the garage with no loft, you can see the truss(es) in the photos that I am thinking of removing:

What do you guys think about putting collar ties on every rafter and doubling them up and then removing the truss?

I built a 10'x16' shed with the 13' walls in my backyard and I didn't use any trusses, but my garage is a little bigger so I am not sure if it would negatively affect the structural integrity.

Also, since removing the old loft, the left side (not connected to home) garage stud wall lost a little support, should I add extra support for that in some way?

I made the actual questions bold.


  • I recommend following the building code over winging it. Even in areas where a permit is not required, building code compliance usually is. Anyway, it's not worth having a poorly performing structure after extensive renovations. Note: Those are not trusses. These are rafters, collar ties and ceiling joists...what is referred to as 'stick framing' or 'conventional framing'. Trusses are an engineered design, usually prefabicated and typically plate connected. A whole different can of worms.
    – user23752
    Aug 14 '14 at 20:51
  • Good points, I am not trying to violate any building codes. See my response to TD. Side note, I thought ceiling joists laid on top of the top plates of the walls?
    – justinw
    Aug 15 '14 at 0:35
  • Metropolitan New York is a region where building permits are typically required and most electrical work of the sort depicted in the photos is regulated and inspected.
    – user23752
    Aug 15 '14 at 2:57
  • @benrudgers Yeah I actually have an licensed electrician doing all the electrical work; i don't like to mess with that...what about my above follow up?
    – justinw
    Aug 16 '14 at 1:19

Quoid, do you live in an area subject to heavy snow loading? If you do, DO NOT remove those joists - they're responsible for holding your walls in as your roof exerts downward pressure from the snow's weight. Remove them, and the walls may blow outward as the garage collapses around you.

  • Hey TD, we do get some snow (NYC area). I actually had a legit home improvement guy come by from the neighborhood because I was questioning the advice I was getting. He basically said the same thing as you "DON'T remove those. I just wanted to post here as well to get more opinions and it seems that was a good idea.
    – justinw
    Aug 15 '14 at 0:33

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