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Question DetailsAsked on 4/2/2016

two parallel ceilin cracks comin from end of wall. Sound structural?

These two cracks come from the top corner of a wall that separates the kitchen and hallway. They are growing slowly. I'm not sure if they are structural or not. They worry me though as the house is over 50 years old. I can send pictures. I wish I could post them here. That would be helpful.

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To post photos - use the Answer This Question yellow button right below your question, as if you were answering your own question. When you click the button a text box titled Your Answer pops up - at the upper left of that box use the leftmost yellow icon to attach photos.

Accepts GIF, JPG, PNG photo file formats.

If diagonal - across wall or ceiling - normally structurally significant. If perpendicular/parallel to walls less commonly so, especially if quite straight (meaning probably along a drywall joint) - are commonly "aging" cracks due to gradual creeping sag of wood framing.

If coming off parallel to the wall and spaced at the width of the wall, so the cracks are basically extensions of the front and back faces of the wall, sounds like someone took out part of the wall or a supporting beam and put in drywall patch, that is now cracking along the patch edges. Could be due to normal creep of the overlying joists which did not occur before due to the beam or wall being there, could be because the patch joints were not properly taped so the crack is just through drywall compound (which tension cracks very easily) - or could be because the wall or beam should not have been removed so the overlying structure is sagging due to lack of proper support.

When you said growing slowly - if you mean over many years at a small fraction of an inch a year, commonly not a structural issue - or at least not an imminent failure concern. If you mean visibly growing on daily or weekly basis, then likely due to a significant issue of structural/foundation note should be looked at by a Structural Engineer.

However, if a patch like I said above and fairly recently done but without proper taping, might or might not be a concern. Obviously, if you have lived there for several years or more and know no recent changes have been made in that area, then there is more cause for concern than if the recent house history is unknown to you.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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