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Popping/creaking noises in interior walls
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3 year old house. Roof trusses. Floor I-joists 19.2 oc. No noticeable truss uplift. 1 year ago, slight noises at base of interior walls at midspan points when walking past interior walls. Note, some interior walls are midspan of floor beams and some are right next to a floor beam. Roof trusses are completely supported by the exterior framing. Now, noise radiates up to ceiling. Have had a structural engineer tell us to use attic fans. No improvement. Another engineer says roof uplift. Another says week floor joists. We tried rescrewing the wallboard back to the framing on these walls--no improvement. Has anyone come across this situation?
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 23 October 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Floor beams? Meaning I-Joists? How deep are the I-Joists, how wide are their flanges, and what distance do they span? I-Joists which are structurally adequate for a given span may still exhibit considerable "bounce", and this may be the cause of your problem. If the wall is connected to both floor and ceiling, and the floor joists bounce, it could well result in the behavior you describe.

Don't quite know what you mean by "now noise radiates up to ceiling"...could you clarify?

Why would there be "truss uplift"? What force would cause that to occur?


Architect (NY) and Home Designer (PA)
 
Posts: 2870 | Location: Tobyhanna, PA | Registered: 24 October 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thank you for your reply. Floor beams are the laminated beams that the I-Joists span. The I-Joists are 11 7/8" Depth with 2 1/2" flange. The joists span 14' and 18' between laminated beams. Single level home so ceiling and interior wall framing is connected to bottom cords of roof trusses. The wall with the most noise (floor to ceiling) is midspan at 7' between beams. However, another wall with some noise is sitting 1' from laminated beam. These walls run perpendicular to the I-joists. Additionally, these walls are in the center portion of the house and that is why one engineer stated that it was truss uplift. 10/12 pitched roof on a frame of 65' x 45'. The noise is a number of popping sounds (like firecraker) that are in a number of locations from floor to ceiling not specifically at the same location at any given time. Always in a.m. when first walking by wall and then periodically during day when a timelapse has occurred. We certainly would like to know what direction to go to fix the problem (i.e., additional beams in basement means tearing out ceiling/walls; attic means removal of insulation and removing attachment to chords but then how are walls attached?)
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 23 October 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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My bet is on the joists. If the joists are too springy, when you walk near them, they will bounce, and the noises you hear may be the wall framing moving on the nails that attach it to the floor, or the nails that attach studs to plate. The popping may be bits of wood breaking off when the wood moves on the nails.

If it is the joists, there aren't many cures that are practical, especially if your basement is finished. Do you have a ceiling in your basement? Is it gypsum board attached directly to the joists? If so, that's one thing that can help the problem, but the best cure would have been deeper joists when the house was constructed.

There have been other threads about bouncy joists in this forum. You might search for them and read them, for more information about curing joist bounce in composite joists.


Architect (NY) and Home Designer (PA)
 
Posts: 2870 | Location: Tobyhanna, PA | Registered: 24 October 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hetzel:
Why would there be "truss uplift"? What force would cause that to occur?


Funny thing is that no one knows for sure what causes truss uplift, we see it on homes with shallow pitchs the most, probably 3 or 4 to 12. It is indeed a pain to fix and I cringe everytime it happens.


General Contractor/Home Builder
 
Posts: 498 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 15 January 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If the truss is fixed at each end, which it probably would be, then expansion could cause the uplift. Theoretically, the truss cannot deform, but that's theory. In practice, there might be enough ways for the truss to deform just enough to cause a fraction of an inch of uplift. Why uplift and not downward motion? The partitions in the house would prevent downward motion.

Well, that's my theory, anyway...but I still bet the problem described is caused by bouncy joists.


Architect (NY) and Home Designer (PA)
 
Posts: 2870 | Location: Tobyhanna, PA | Registered: 24 October 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Your right about the truss uplift Richard. The temps in the attic as related to the ones buried below the insulation is just enough to cause the trusses to expand and contract. When this happens the part of the truss that is extended past the outer wall gets pushed down. this in turn causes the lower cord to bow up.
At least this is what was explained to me by a truss company when my client had the same issue.
 
Posts: 1933 | Location: New Jersey | Registered: 31 January 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Makes sense for standard insulated homes, but the last one it happened to for us was a hot roof with closed cell foam. In any case, I never meant to change the subject from the original post.


General Contractor/Home Builder
 
Posts: 498 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 15 January 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think I'll invent a connector which will hold down one end of a truss while allowing it to move laterally to permit expansion and contraction, and put poor Jay out of his miseries Wink


Architect (NY) and Home Designer (PA)
 
Posts: 2870 | Location: Tobyhanna, PA | Registered: 24 October 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You bet it would, I'd be your first customer.


General Contractor/Home Builder
 
Posts: 498 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 15 January 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thank you for your post. May I ask if there was solution to truss lift in the case of your client?
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 23 October 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Unfortunately with truss uplift, it doesn't usually show it's ugly head until after the house is completed. By then the only thing we can do it try to hide it. Since the joints of ceilings and interior walls are the places where you see the symptoms, what we have done is go up in the attic and very carefully push the ceiling sheetrock down at and near these joints so that the screw holding the ceiling sheetrock pops, usually within 16" of the joint (this could be more depending on how bad the uplift is). The sheetrock will still be supported on top of the wall sheetrock but now will stay in place at times when truss uplift occurs. We've been doing this for a number of years and haven't had a callback on it yet. If I've confused you totally, let me know and I will sketch something and upload it.


General Contractor/Home Builder
 
Posts: 498 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 15 January 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Did Elizabeth 1234 find a solution to the popping?
 
Posts: 3 | Registered: 15 January 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Help. I have creaking and popping sounds in my walls also. The house is just 3 years old and we didn't have this problem all winter. The last few days it has happened mainly in the evening. Should I be worried?
 
Posts: 1 | Registered: 20 May 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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No, as homes age they begin to settle. As this happens some popping sounds may occur from time to time. Most cases its the siding reacting to the heat and cool of the day and evening.

I would not worry to much about this.
 
Posts: 1933 | Location: New Jersey | Registered: 31 January 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Since my 1st post we have not had any solution. The interior walls and ceilings still make these noises and it has gotten worse. We decided to redo one of the walls and the contractor found that there were some of the studs that were loose. Whatever is happening with our house is getting worse. I can only believe that the floor joists are not sufficient or we have a problem with truss uplift that has literally pulled the studs loose. We need to find someone who can give us an honest opinion and solution. The builder has run and hidden and the flooring company says the joists are within the specifications and the truss people say noises occur.
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 23 October 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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When you said that the flooring company is telling you that everything is ok with the trusses, do you mean the truss company or the person who put down the floor?

You need to get to the truss company engineer people. Not the supplier who sells the stuff out of the lumber yard or the area sales staff for the truss company. Both of their goals are to sell product. The lumber company is going to bat for the builder as they want to sell more. The sales staff of the truss company makes his money by selling to the lumber yard. So they are not going to make waves to chance loosing a sale later on.
The engineer department who designs the trusses and reviews the installation guidlines are the people to speak with. They have a reputation to make things right. If not they risk lossing lots of money should their design fail. If the builder did something wrong or the designer was not properly sizing the truss then they will tell you this. You can hire a professional enginer who can review what you have. This cost a bit, but may be worth it.
Builders today because of costs are using the least amount of product they can in an effort to make money. This does not mean to say that the house would be unsafe. But designs by there very nature are on the short side of strength.

As far as the builder running and hiding. Get yourself a good lawyer. They know how to find these guys.
 
Posts: 1933 | Location: New Jersey | Registered: 31 January 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I still believe this is truss uplift because any floor sagging that would tear studs loose would seem to be pretty obvious. If it were me or my job, I would go into the attic and find some way to unattach the top of the interior wall from the rafter, then put some kind of L bracket on each side of the bottom chord of the rafter, attaching it to the top plate of the stud wall but not to the rafter, this will brace the wall with the rafter without attaching it so that the rafter has room to move up and down without tearing the studs away.

In fact, I'd try it in one or two places to see if it works and if so, then go back and do the remainder. You'd still have to pop the sheetrock as I mentioned in a previous post.


General Contractor/Home Builder
 
Posts: 498 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 15 January 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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you say your house is 3 yrs old? Don't you have the 10 year warrenty on structural issues?
 
Posts: 7 | Registered: 13 May 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Not to confuse the issue, but I have these same popping sounds in my living room ceiling, and it is has no interior walls - the trusses only bear at the two ends. What causes these? Drywall moving against screws? Truss members rubbing against each other???
 
Posts: 3 | Registered: 15 January 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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