Beta Structural Engineers can offer Clients advice when creating an opening in a load bearing (structural) wall.

Homeowners often need to make openings in internal load-bearing (structural) walls or sometimes completely remove them. This may be required to change the layout in a dwelling, make a room bigger, open up two rooms onto each other to create open space or create a larger room.

Making an opening in a load-bearing (structural) wall requires the installation of a concrete lintel, a timber beam or a steel beam; to ensure the loads being previously carried out by the wall are safely re-distributed. The support points of this member need to be checked and pad-stones or engineering bricks may be required. In some cases, the remaining structure next to the opening (masonry or timber) may not be able to support the loads of the beam and a post or a pier maybe required. In some cases, although not the norm, a foundation may be required to support the loads of the new post/new pier. The alternative load path needs to be checked by a Structural Engineer who will produce the following:

  1. Sizes of beam or lintel, pad-stone if any, masonry pier or steel post, foundation depth and footprint if required.
  2. Drawings and specifications for the builder to execute the work safely.
  3. A structural calculation report to be submitted to the Building Control department of the local authority to satisfy them that works are compliant with the Building Regulations. If the dwelling is in a flat or a leasehold property, a copy of the report may be needed by the Management Company.

The first question would be, is the wall structural? This would depend on the layout of the house, the way the floors and walls above are supported and the location of the wall within the house. Some stud timber walls were used in period properties to carry loads and they support walls above them as well as joists of the floor above them. Some masonry walls are just separation partitions and carry no load.

Beta Structural Engineers have worked on scores of West London properties where we have advised on how to safely create openings in internal walls or completely remove internal walls. Please contact us to enquire about our case studies for the following projects:

Building Control Kingston: removal of internal structural (load bearing) wall in Kingston.

Building Control Richmond: Removal of internal structural (load bearing) wall in Richmond.

Building Control Hounslow: Removal of internal structural (load bearing) wall in Hounslow.

Building Control Ealing: Removal of internal structural (load bearing) wall in Ealing.

Building Control Hammersmith and Fulham: Removal of internal structural (load bearing)wall in Hammersmith and Fulham