My house, a Cape Cod, was built in the mid 1950s. There has always been the occasional pop and creak over the years, but this past February, one particular room of the house began emitting loud pops, especially at night, from the ceiling and walls. I mean... REALLY loud, louder than I have ever heard before in many years of being in the house. Unnervingly loud, in fact.
As you know, the Northeast had a bitterly cold winter and February was particularly brutal, so I figured it was the extreme cold causing contraction in the roof timbers, etc and that things would eventually quiet down in the spring. Not so. As the weather warmed, the popping and cracking never really stopped. Especially at night when the temperature would fluctuate, through the 30-50 degree range.
And now it's summer, and the same room is still popping away... except now we've had an unusually wet summer, so I wonder if that's just causing more problems with the wood. It definitely seems to be something in the roof, as I have checked for any cracks or separations along the floor (fearing some sort of foundational settling) and have found none. There's a window in that area of the room and the frame often makes noises too. A vertical crack has appeared in the drywall between window top and ceiling.
Now, in mid July, I can clearly see that every single nail/stud in one corner of this particular bedroom has started to push out, so now the drywall on the upper parts of the walls has rows of protruding dimples. (The nails haven't actually emerged, but I fear they're going to.)
But I'm not seeing this happening anywhere else in the upstairs rooms, just in this room, and now I'm fearing something has gone wrong with the roof in that part of the house, and that it's not just ambient temperature or humidity but actual moisture getting into the beams.
What can I do to investigate further?