Extending a wall and got up into my attic to make sure I have a rafter to nail to and the rafter is 4 inches over from where I want to extend my new wall. Not sure what the existing wall header is nailed to. Should i just toenail some 2X4 up there to nail the top of my frame to?
George ~ Chicago, Illinois
George, if the existing wall that you are going to lengthen is not load bearing, then it would not be unusual for the wall to have no header at all. However, it is important for the newly-built portion of the wall to be securely attached to both the floor and the ceiling, regardless of the framing structure in the existing wall. Attaching the wall's bottom plate to the floor is simple enough, but you will have to add some "nailers" to the rafter framing before you can attach the top plate of the new wall to the ceiling.
Measure the distance between the two rafters that are closest to where the new wall will attach to the ceiling, and then cut a few 2x4's or 2x6's to length. Position the pieces of wood between the rafters, keeping them flush with the bottom of the rafters with the widest portion of the board facing downwards. Securely nail the wood pieces into place. You can then attach the top plate of the new wall to the ceiling, making sure to set the nails or screws where the newly installed "nailers" are located. Good Luck with your project!