Renovation-Headquarters Banner

Framing Problems

Moisture And Wood

Problem: Weakened wall studs.

Weakened studs can result in distortion of the framing and cracked surface finishes.

Cause: Poor installation procedures resulting in studs being out of plumb, or weakening through excessive notching and drilling of bearing studs.


  • Take care to align studs square. Measure the diagonals of the framing to ensure that the dimensions are equal before lifting it into place. Install a metal brace at 45 degrees let into the studs or install wall sheathing before erecting the walls.
  • Notching and drilling of bearing studs should not exceed allowable depth.
  • Notches, chases, holes and other penetrations through bearing studs are often required for electrical, plumbing, or heating installations. Notches should not exceed one third of the depth of the stud where it is load-bearing as shown in Figure 14.
Notching Of Wall Studs
Figure 14 - Correct Notching Of Wall Studs
  • Note 1: Minimum 2/3 D if stud is load-bearing; 1 5/8 inch (40 mm) if stud is non-load-bearing.
  • Note 2: Minimum A + B = 2/3 D if stud is load-bearing; A + B = 1 5/8 inch (40 mm) if stud is non-load bearing.
  • Where notches exceed allowable depth, reinforce them with 1 1/2 inch (38 mm) limber nailed to the side of the studs and extending 24 inch (600 mm) on each side of the notch or hole.
  • Reinforce notched top plates in the same fashion if less than 2 inches (50 mm) in width remains as shown in Figure 15.
Correct Notching of Top Plates On Stud Wall
Figure 15 - Correct Notching of Top Plates On Stud Wall