Manufactured homes comprise wooden frames called studs, which are easy to transport and cheap to construct. They transport the homes in metal frames. However, the regulations require the homes to have studs to bear weight from the roof and snow and withstand winds.
Manufactured homes have studs that bear the weight from the roof. Studs are 2” × 4” (5.08 x 10.16 cm) for standard homes and 2” × 6” (5.08×15.24 cm) for high-quality homes. Inner walls have weaker studs, which are usually 2”× 2” (5.08 x 5.08 cm) because they aid partitioning.
In the rest of this article, I’ll discuss the tips to help identify studs in your manufactured home and how to use a stud finder to locate studs. I’ll also discuss the role of studs and how they construct walls in manufactured homes.
How To Locate Studs in a Manufactured Home
Manufactured homes have wooden frames called studs, which are the foundation that gives the house stability.
You may need to hang your picture frame, coat hanger, or a wall clock, but before hammering that nail in your wall, it’s advisable to locate studs so that your nails are firm and don’t fall off.
Finding the studs is easy. You only need:
- Tape measure
- Stud finder
- Drill and drill bit
Studs are usually 16” (40.64 cm) from each other. Once you have the requirements, you can use the tips below to locate studs in your wall:
- Pull your tape 16” (40.64 cm) away from a door, corner, or another wall. Use a hammer to tap on the wall and listen to the sound. It’ll sound solid if you’ve tapped on a stud and hollow if not.
- Find a light switch or an electric socket. Measure 16” (40.64 cm) horizontally away from the socket or switch and tap the spot lightly with the hammer to check if the stud is present. If it sounds solid, you found it. If it’s hollow, move a few more inches and tap to locate it.
- Inspect the walls and identify seams. Look for areas with nailed panels or drywall seams. Measure 16” (40.64 cm) from the seam in a horizontal direction. Verify if the stud is in that position using the hammer to tap gently.
- Kneel and examine the baseboard trim. Look for a nailed spot in the baseboard. The stud will be in that position, which will be the point where the stud joins the floor.
- Move the stud finder on your wall, observing the display. Your stud finder light will blink on when it detects a stud, and when that happens, mark the points where it indicates the presence of a stud. Carefully read and follow instructions from the manufacturer to use the stud finder properly.
- You may also tap the location with the hammer to counter-check.
- You can also use a drill to locate studs. Using the 1/16” (0.16 cm) bit, drill a hole in the wall. Should you drill through without gripping, then you haven’t spotted a stud. Your estimations or measurements are off, so try to measure 24” (60.96 cm). Old homes used 2×2 in (5.08×5.08 cm) studs, and they could have some room for errors. You could miss by 1” (2.54 cm).
- If all these tips fail, you can keep tapping every consecutive inch to find your studs. It’s advisable to note the stud distribution for your future reference.
How They Build Walls in Manufactured Homes
Manufactured home walls are built with vertical frames called studs.
Studs are usually 2”x4” (5.08 x 10.16 cm) spaced 16” (40.64 cm) apart.
They call it “on center ” or 16” (40.64 cm) OC in the construction language.
Above-average homes use 2” x6” (5.08×15.24 cm) studs while low-cost homes have 2” x 3” (5.08×7.62 cm).
The wind zones and state laws dictate how they’ll construct your home.
Interior or partition walls don’t bear any weight, and they may use 2” x 2” (5.08×5.08 cm) studs with 24” (60.96 cm) spacing.
Top and bottom plates, also called horizontal boards, help hold vertical studs in place.
Walls are built bordering windows and doors differently to spread the weight around the opening sides.
They also reinforce above the windows and doors with structural headers.
Attaching Walls to the Floor and Roof
The roofing and floor create structurally strong walls.
The interior and perimeter walls are attached to the floor by joists and metal straps known as hurricane straps.
If the roof of your manufactured home sits directly onto the top plate of a wall, that wall is called a bearing wall.
The load-bearing walls are usually the perimeter walls in most cases.
This YouTube video illustrates how they build manufactured homes:
Manufactured homes have studs, but their structure depends on wooden frames (studs) for stability.
Also, the building regulations dictate that home builders observe safety standards while constructing the homes.
However, the type of studs your home has will depend on federal law regulations and the geographical location of your home.
Cheers, tools owners!