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Sagging Ceiling/Floor

We own a 140 year old historic registered home. After moving in and removing the drop ceiling in the kitchen we discovered it was hiding a sagging ceiling on the first floor and a weak floor on the second level. It appears that our kitchen was the back porch where there were two levels and the owners boxed it in to add on to the house. The spot where the floor sags seems to be the old stair entrance to the second level. So there is a 10 foot long by 3 foot wide opening that was boarded up without supports on the bottom. We assume there are joists in between the two sufarces as we have a ceiling fan in the lower level that has the wiring inside the ceiling. How can we repair this without spending too much money? We are limited in money and resources. How should we reinforce the seam without removing the existing boards? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Sincerely, Historic Home Owner

Re: Sagging Ceiling/Floor

Without trying to sound sarcastic, the cheapest solution would be to put in a drop ceiling.
Other than that you'd have to start taking off the boards on the ceiling to see what is up there. I can't think of any way to fix what has been cobbled together over the years without seeing it. I'd be interested to see what the structure looks like and if it is sound. It could be just a sag that's not moving any more and could possibly be jacked up and reinforced or it could be a structural weakness that should be corrected. In the first case a drop ceiling could be a temporary fix until funds are available or in the second case you might have to shift your priorities.

Re: Sagging Ceiling/Floor

It's difficult to tell from the pics what is sagging. My guess would be the stair opening was just closed off without proper blocking. I would say that you will at least need to remove the 3 ft X 10 Ft section of wood and install proper blocking.

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