How to Raise House Walls
Raising a House Wall
usually constructed on the flat deck of the house.
Raising the walls after they are constructed can be
a difficult ask. The wall can be completed before
it is raised or it may be only partially completed.
I prefer only partially completing the wall before
raising it unless you are using powered lifting
equipment such as a crane. A completed house wall
can be very heavy if it has all the sheathing,
trim, and barrier paper installed. The following
tips on how to raise house walls will ensure a
Before the exterior wall is framed, a chalk
line should be snapped on the deck. For a 2x4
wall with 1/2 inch sheathing, the line should
be 4 inches off the edge of the outside edge of
the deck. Align the edge of the bottom plate of
the completed wall on the line. The end of the
wall is aligned with the edge of the deck. Toe
nail the bottom plate to the deck on the inside
of the bottom plate. This will hold the wall in
place when squaring up the wall and also keep
the wall on the line when raising it.
Use a straight claw hammer or a pry bar under
the top plate to get your hands under the wall
to lift it. Lift the wall high enough to slip a
2x4 flat under it. This inch and a half space
gives you enough room for your hands.
Before raising the wall have bracing material
on hand. Brace the wall in place as part of the
raining process. To avoid any accidental
falling don’t wait to install the bracing. A
small amount of wind on a large wall section
can cause it to blow off the foundation.
Have enough 2x4 bracing to nail them on
about every 10 feet along the wall. Use blocks
nailed to the deck to anchor the braces. Nail
the bracing through the deck into the floor
joists to eliminate the risk of the bracing
failing in high winds.
Bracing on the ends of the walls can be nailed
on before it is raised. Nail one end of a 2x4
(wall stud) about one third of the way down
from the top plate. Start a nail at the other
end of the 2x4 so that when the wall is stood
up, all you have to do is drive the nail into
the rim joist to brace the end of the wall.
A good rule for raising a wall is a set of
hands every 8 to 10 feet along the wall. This
gives everyone a comfortable weight to lift
without over stressing anyone. For safety, use
your legs in the lifting process as much as
Once the wall is raised nail the end braces to
the rim joists then nail the braces to a stud
or window opening about a third of the way down
from the top plate, about every 8 to 10 feet
apart. Nail the blocks to the deck alongside
the braces that are nailed to the wall. Nail
through the deck into the floor joists. Plumb
the wall and nail the anchor end of the brace
to the blocks on the deck.
The final step in raising the wall is to nail
the bottom plate of the wall to the deck.
Straighten the wall along the chalk line
snapped on the deck before nailing.
Knowing how to raise house walls effectively will
take some of the hazard out of the task. Now you
can begin work on the rest of the wall.
See related articles:
Framing Walls | Wall Framing Layout
How to Cut Roof Rafters
How to Frame Gable Roofs
How to Make Stair Stringers