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Wall / Joist air cavity air return

3 years ago

We are in the middle of a semi-custom build of a 2200sf home on a partially finished basement (1100sf). It seems like they plan on placing one of the air returns for the basement on the wall opposite the furnace by using the joist and wall cavity. It seems that they had to do this because the return crosses the two supply ducts (zoned system).

From what I’ve read, using wall/joist cavities is an outdated practice that doesn’t even meet code in some areas (but does seem to in ours). I’ve sent a message to our project manager to ask about this, but wanted to get some independent feedback from the group here as well.

The first two pictures are from yesterday, the next two are from today, after they’ve started sealing it off.

Side note: I’m also worried about how they cut the top plate. Our plans show that there is thickened slab under this wall, does that hint that this wall is load bearing?

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MAC Design + Build
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Loudon County Full-Service Design/Build Firm & Kitchen Remodeler