I had an electrician over yesterday and they ran BX and a flex conduit for a TV I want to hang over my fireplace. I was examining the notch they made in a stud immediately next to the chimney masonry and I'm concerned that it is too deep. The member is a single 2x4 and the notch depth is slightly over 2", so I would consider this stud compromised. Complicating this further is that there is pretty much no way to adequately install a stud shoe on this thing because it is directly next to the masonry of the chimney.

Directly behind this stud is what I believe is the sheathing, it's hard to tell because it's full of old insulation, but there is some kind of lumber there.

Should I be concerned? I've already contacted the electrician and am waiting to hear back. I don't know if being near masonry helps or hurts and whether my house being brick on frame matters (I suspect it doesn't).

2 1/2" Size of opening 1 3/4" Stud width 3 1/2" Stud depth to sheathing + ~2" notch


You don't need a ton of room to install a stud shoe. You can also use traditional strapping but I would try to get a shoe on it. If you can attach the front and one side really well you can probably get away with not attaching the side near masonry as well (could glue it). The 2x is compromised so you need something bracing the front.

  • Thanks for the reply. I was looking at that exact shoe earlier. I would have to either flatten or remove the flange on one side in order to make it fit but I think that's what I'm going to end up doing.
    – pm_752566
    Mar 3 '16 at 18:23

It's extremely unlikely that a notch in one stud will cause problems. If there happens to be a concentrated load at that point, make a repair like DMoore suggests. If not, the wall as a system is still sound. It would take several thousand pounds of localized force to result in compression damage at that point.

  • Thanks. I don't think there's a lot of load here, especially since the chimney column is literally adjacent to this beam and the only thing above it is a bedroom wall / roof. I'll probably shore it up with a shoe just to protect the front of the stud and give it a bit more integrity.
    – pm_752566
    Mar 3 '16 at 18:24

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