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Building Codes and Inspections/Residential Building Code Doors and Windows


Barn Ext Wall
Barn Ext Wall  

barn floor plan
barn floor plan  
We are remodeling our barn (which is currently just a large, open space) to have two rooms and a hallway in the back half and a workshop in the front half. To do this we want to cut out openings for a door and two 2'x3' windows in the back exterior wall. Our current design has the full stud that's next to the window only 9.5" from the full stud next to the door (see the attached drawing). We are also adding 3 full studs in-between the window and door to be used as blocking for the attachment of the hallway wall. To your knowledge is this design violating any building codes? We have a building code book but I couldn't find anything that specified distance between doors and windows.

You can't find it because there isn't a specified distance between windows and doors other than you have to be able to install the windows and doors in accordance with the manufacturer's listing, which is basically their installation instructions.  There is a maximum stud spacing to support wall coverings and to provide the needed bearing capacity for whatever is being supported by the wall. Basically, you start with the wall stud spacing, add the required full length and jack studs at the doors and windows,any nailers needed for finishing wall coverings at the corners, and mounting electrical boxes & handrails, etc.,as you describe you are doing.

I don't see any problems with your method, but checking with your local Building Official is always a good ides to be sure there are no local code amendments that might impact your project.

Don't forget to provide at least a 36" x 36" landing and a light outside the door.

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Keith Fuller


I'm an ICC Certified Master Code Professional fielding general building code questions. My experience has been heavy in fire related issues.


I've been employed since 1985 as an inspector and plan reviewer, and am a municipal Assistant Building Official and Deputy fire Marshal. I've had fire service experience since 1972, having served as a three time Fire Chief and Fire Marshal in years past. The increasing workload, mandatory certifications, and continuing education requirements in recent years have caused me to concentrate my efforts on code related issues. I hold national fire service certifications as well.

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