How to Build a Load Bearing Stud Wall

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When building interior walls for an addition or remodeling, it's important to be sure that any wall you construct will support the weight of what's above it. In the case of stud walls, it's important that it be load bearing for the integrity of the construction. A few simple principles are important to remember when you're building a load bearing stud wall. Keep these in mind, and use basic carpentry and framing skills, and you'll have a stud wall that's up to the challenge of bearing the load.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 x 4 Boards 10d Nails Saw Hammer
  • Measure the distance the wall will cover. Then cut three pieces of 2 x 4 boards to match the length of the wall. A circular saw or table saw is the best saw to use for this. It's fast, and cuts cleanly through boards of this thickness. These pieces will be at the top and bottom of the stud wall you'll be constructing.

  • Determine the height of your wall. Then cut pieces of 2 x 4 board that are 6" less that the height of the wall. Use a circular or table saw for the cuts. These pieces will be the vertical elements of your wall. You'll need enough of these boards to space them at a distance of 16" side to side across the length of the wall.

  • Layout two of the boards you cut in Step 1 parallel to each other, with the 4" sides facing each other. Nail in the vertical boards, starting at one end. Space each board 16" apart from the next, measuring from the middle of each board. Use a carpenter's square to check the spacing and squareness of the structure periodically as you go along.

  • Nail a second board to the top of the wall when the structure is complete. Then with the help of assistants, raise the wall up and maneuver it into position in your construction.

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