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How do I widen a doorway on a load-bearing wall? We have a standard doorway (no door) between our dinette area and living room. We would like to widen this doorway, to the next stud (about 15 inches). This appears to be a load-bearing wall. Does the fact that it is a load-bearing wall prevent us from widening the doorway without a major headache?
If this is a support wall, it will be a major project because you need to install a support beam to carry the weight of this opening. You should probably seek out a professional (http://www.nari.org/) to see what would need to be installed.
With our company, a lot of times we can widen a doorway that is a support wall with an Engineered Lumber Beam that can easily be installed with some framing knowledge. If this wall does appear to be a load-bearing support wall, I would recommend getting a professional (with proper insurance) to come and give you an idea of what it would cost to properly install a support beam.
Answered By: Allison Guido, Certified Remodeler, National Association of the Remodeling Industry
Almar is located in Hanover, Massachusetts, which is south of Boston. We have been in business for 50 years. My grandfather started the company in 1959 and my dad had been running it full-time until I came on board seven years ago. We are a full-service remodeler who loves a challenge and projects that other people aren't interested in taking on.