brick exterior wall
The previous owners of my house had an addition built on part of the back of the house. They made a doorway into the new room and encased the remaining original back brick wall of the house in drywall. I would like to know if the wall can be removed to make the addition fully open to the adjoining room.
I know that beams and pillars can be used in place of load-bearing walls, but can this wall even be removed? Can a solid brick wall inside a home be taken down--without using a bulldozer or wrecking ball and causing a lot of damage? If so, how, and is it very costly? Also, the ceiling of the addition is higher than the ceiling of the original house.
Re: brick exterior wall
First off...I'm just a DYIer, not a pro. That said...
Yes, you can break down a brick wall without heavy machinery. It takes a long time, and you'll be sore for a week, but, is it safe in this case? The only person who could tell you that is an architect. Consulting one in this case is definitely worth your while. If they say it can come down, and how much additional support is necessary, you do it by first building a supporting wall next to the old one, then as the wall comes down, I think I'd add wall jacks to help support, until the final pillars (if needed) are put in. (One of last seasons' episodes of TOH involved removing a load bearing wall and removing an unneeded brick chimney (which isn't terribly different than a brick wall...)
I have no idea how much the architect would charge for his advice, but a couple hundred dollars is definitely better than possibly having the ceiling collapse.