I need to run wiring for my home entertainment setup thru an exterior wall.
This is obviously a load bearing wall and I assume that it's 2x6 beams, I
am not sure what the code is in NJ. This is the first floor of a two
story house and I wood need to drill holes in approximately 3 beems to go
accross a four foot span. I would appreciate any advice on if I can drill
or notch the beams and to what extent. Also these beams are above a
window, so I would also have a header beam to contend with. I appreciate
Drill the smallest holes possible in the center of any beam. Check out
the super extra long drill bits available at box stores like Lowes. Not
likely that the new holes would have any significant effect on beam
You can get local information from your municipal
building permit office. The main question is whether
owner-occupiers may make changes that violate the
code for new construction. A second consideration
is whether a non-code change invalidates your
householder's insurance. Not many insurance brokers
know much about fire, building methods and materials etc.
Here's my reply to a previous thread.....(slightly edited)
Best to drill joists in center of the joist depth, never in the center
1/3 of the span and 6" or more from the bearing ends
Max hole size is 1/3 the joist depth & min edge distance is 2"
Section R502.8.1 Sawn Lumber:
"The diameter of holes bored or cut into members shall not exceed
one-third the depth of the member. Holes shall not be closer than 2
inches to the top or bottom of the member, or to any other hole located
in the member. Where the member is also notched, the hole shall not be
closer than 2 inches to the notch."
this code passage says 2" minimum "meat" between holes...I would
suggest that hole spacing should depend on hole diameter...the code
allow 3" holes in a 2x10 with only 2" of meat between them ...that
make me nervous
I think you mean 'studs' (vertical), not 'beams' (horizontal). 2x6s would
never be used as anything but studs or sill/cap plates in residential
construction. Since this is near ceiling, are we talking about speaker
leads? Or is this coax feeds to the external antenna mounted on corner of
If speakers, easiest method is to remove baseboard and run it behind that,
fishing down and then back up in the appropriate stud cavity. Being an
outside wall, you will be fighting with the insulation. If coax, usual
practice is to go through floor, then through basement ceiling and out
through band joist above the sill plate. (Unless you are on a slab, of
| | I think you mean 'studs' (vertical), not 'beams' (horizontal). 2x6s
| never be used as anything but studs or sill/cap plates in residential
it's obvious you know nothing about rough construction.
actually 2x6's are used for headers, ceiling joists, rafters, beams,
studs, sil plates, and solid blocking in residential construction.
in a 2x6 you can drill a hole up to 7/8" in the center of the stud
but not more than 2 consecutive studs.
but you can not drill a hole through a header.
you are better off drilling down into the bottom plate and back up in a
|I need to run wiring for my home entertainment setup thru an exterior
| This is obviously a load bearing wall and I assume that it's 2x6
| am not sure what the code is in NJ. This is the first floor of a two
| story house and I wood need to drill holes in approximately 3 beems to
| accross a four foot span. I would appreciate any advice on if I can
| or notch the beams and to what extent. Also these beams are above a
| window, so I would also have a header beam to contend with. I
| all advice.
Since when can't you drill through a header? Somewhere,
sometime, some place, someone has to go through a header
If it were significant, going through a sill plate would
be worse than going through a header.
As for drilling through (horizontal) beams, drilling on the
neutral axis (center) of the beam does minimal harm to the
strength of the beam. Some (all?) manufactured trusses
have prepunched holes of about 1-1/2" diameter at regular
intervals along the length.
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