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Noisy house owner
noisy house
Noisy house owner

My 21 year old cedar sided one story ranch creaks and groans at night. I think this is related to the temperature dropping outside because this does not occur in June and July when there is little difference between night and day time temperatures. One person said that it might be the release of moisture built up in the attic and that I should check to see if there were enough vents in the soffit. I did and there is only one soffit vent for the whole house. Could this be the source of the problem or is something else doing it?

designseeker
Re: noisy house
designseeker

I do not think moisture in the attic would cause this.
Do nearby houses do the same?..for extreme temperature differentials i could see it happening to an old house
where the nails are not firmly set due to the wood drying out.

http://longisland-architects.com

dj1
Re: noisy house
dj1

One vent for the whole house? that's not enough.

Regarding the noises: Do they appear every fall season?

Noisy house owner
Re: noisy house
Noisy house owner

This is my second winter living in this house and the noise occurs all year around except in summer. I have not heard of any of my neighbors complaining of the same problem.

dj1
Re: noisy house
dj1

Possibly framing members' expansion and contraction.

In what area around the house is the noise?

Mark
Re: noisy house
Mark

I had a problem similar to this a few years back and solved it with 4 inch screws! Nails move, screws don't - will solve your squeks and noises no problemo

ericburns4
Re: noisy house
ericburns4

I too think this is because of variation in temperature, leading to expansion and contraction.

motoguy128
Re: noisy house
motoguy128

Every "modern" (built after 1950) home I've head always creaked a lot in winter. I think it's mostly related to temperature and humidity changes causing the lumber to change dimensionally. I think you'd be suprised and how much tension there is in modern framing. Some of that is the use of new growth lumber that's not completely dried. IT can warp and shift after framing is completed and be pre-stressed. So and variation in temp or humidity will cause it to move and rub against other frame members.

I also think modern truss construction methods, joining methods and lack of good craftsmanship causes some of this as well.

Finally, the tendency to built to minimum code can lead to a lot of foundation shiuftng from inadequate footings for the soil type, poor backfill materials and so on.

Bottom line, creaks and moans are normal in tract homes and new or post-war construction. Can;t do much to stop it without finding the offending frame member in an attic and re-enforcing it or using a lot of construction adhesive or something to fill in the gaps.

ordjen
Re: noisy house
ordjen

One item in many modern homes that is subject to movement due to heat and humidity changes, is the pre-stress web trusses which are used in the attic. These replace the heavier, sturdy joists and rafters which fromerly were your ceiling and roof supports. These pre-stress trusses can move to the point where they cause structural problems such as the dry wall corners lifting upwards away from the walls. In my previous house, the gap above the veneer course of bricks of my fireplace would expand with the seasons and go back down as the season changed. My first thought was that the weight of the brick I had added was causing the slab foundation to settle. Fortunately, it was the ceiling lifting slightly seasonally.

If there is wood rubbing tightly on wood, I can well believe that creaking noises would result. How you would go about determining where that is happening, I am not certain. It would require that you either tighten the joint down with screws or somehow lubricate the rubbing surfaceswtih wax, soap or grease.

von_steuben
Re: noisy house
von_steuben

The only possibility I can think of given your rather cold location, is frost heaving of the foundation, especially during the winter months---this would be more likely if you happen to have a lot of clay in the soil surrounding the foundation, which tends to hold moisture, which then freezes as the temps plunge.

In other words, the soil is freezing in cold weather and actually lifting the foundation slightly until things thaw out over time.

Are there any cracks in the foundation? What minimum temps do you experience in Sauk Rapids?

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