Everything You Need to Know About Load-Bearing Walls

Many people venture to carry out comprehensive renovations to eliminate dividing elements from a floor or change its distribution to make it an open space. In most cases, this is not a problem. But, other times, this reform is totally complicated when we find the load-bearing wall. These walls cannot be pulled down as they are part of the structure of the building and the house.

 

What Is a Load-Bearing Wall?

Load-bearing walls are walls that have a structural function. These elements, apart from dividing two spaces, support the weight of the building. For this reason, these walls must be respected and left intact. If not, this action could seriously affect the stability of the structure and the property’s stability, eliminating its function of resisting loads.

What Are the Differences Between Partition and Load-Bearing Wall?

In this situation, they may create some doubts: are you in front of a load-bearing wall, or is it a simple partition? There are some tricks to differentiate these two elements to indicate whether a wall is a load-bearing wall or a section. Once the walls have been identified with these mechanisms, you will have a clearer vision of your home’s future layout.

Of course, before starting with the reform, we advise you to contact a professional. Otherwise, the consequences of this type of work may be irreversible not only for the home itself but also for the entire building. In turn, to carry out this type of reform, a prior evaluation by an architect or a surveyor is necessary.

Before Kicking Start the Project

Before carrying out any analysis of the property walls, it is necessary to have an updated plan of the house. In this way, we will have a more realistic view of the property’s current state since this property or building has undergone modifications, improvements, or reforms that have not yet been included in any project or plan.

We remind you again that you must consult with a professional who correctly identifies these elements to implement this reform. But if you are a little impatient and would like to have a close vision of your future renovation, we give you some clues that will help you identify these load-bearing walls:

  • The thickness of the walls is the main indicator of the load-bearing walls. These walls have more density than normal walls. For example, a partition has a thickness of about 10 centimeters; on the other hand, the load-bearing wall can reach about 30 centimeters thick.

  • When a wall has deformations, the weight of the house’s structure is not well distributed. If a wall has deformations, it is a load-bearing wall.

  • If we have a house plan, it will be easy to identify the load-bearing walls, not only by their thickness but by their position.

  • A building that has been built with load-bearing walls will have its entire contour made up of these structural elements.

  • Be careful; the perimeter of the stairs can be made up of load-bearing walls.

  • Finally, to know if a wall is a load-bearing wall, we can be guided by the sound it produces when it is struck. If the sound is firm and consistent, you will be in front of a load-bearing wall; on the other hand, if the sound is hollow and weak, it can be a partition.

Is It Entirely Impossible to Throw Down a Load-Bearing Wall?

In principle, eliminating a load-bearing wall is a complicated task and impossible to consider until long ago. But nowadays, techniques have been carried out that allow these load-bearing walls to be reformed, eliminating them. Of course, this work, together with its respective building license, will always go hand in hand with a collegiate architect so that the skeleton and body of the building do not suffer damage.

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