The first step in figuring out how to space studs in a wall is to figure out if the wall is a load-bearing wall or a non-load-bearing wall. If it is a load-bearing wall, which means it supports the weight of the floor or roof above, the studs need to be placed 16 inches apart. If it is a non-load-bearing wall, studs can be spaced 24 inches apart.
To properly space studs, the measurement needs to be from the center of one stud to the next. This is called on center. With load-bearing walls, it is crucial that studs are placed no further than 16 inches apart. If not, there can be structural damage to the floor or roof above, which can result in major financial losses or injury. Non-load-bearing walls simply need to be able to support their own weight, including any wiring, plumbing, or insulation that will be in the wall. When building a wall, it is essential to get good pieces of lumber. Bent or warped lumber can result in an uneven and unsafe wall. When choosing lumber, hold the lumber at eye level so that any twists or bends can be seen by looking lengthwise down the piece.