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  1. #1
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    Default Cracks in garage floor

    In the images, there is a long crack in an attached garage which obviously travels through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room. How do you think about this issue? Thanks

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Not sure. I can only judge from the images. YOu probably can do the same.
    What are you thinking?


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    What are you going to say in the report?
    nothing wrong. Patch?


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Have never heard the 10 feet rule.
    Where did you get this rule?
    "No structural issue and area should be monitored for uneven movement or repaired correctly."
    really?
    So you are not going to refer to engineer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Wood View Post
    Personally I would only point out what you should see as a practice at the time for a garage. Reason it is often ignored is lack of knowledge in the importance of the expansion crack. The 10 foot rule allows the area to properly expand and contract and should not be ignored. No structural issue and area should be monitored for uneven movement or repaired correctly.



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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Concrete does two things:
    - 1) Concrete gets hard.
    - 2) Concrete cracks.

    Laying out control joints for concrete cracks to follow *does not* guaranty that the concrete will pay attention and will crack at the control joint.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Jerry and Tom:

    Thanks for your input. Not sure if you noticed that in this case, the crack run through the foundation perimeter and travels to the adjacent room.

    Also I found an old thread talking about the similar issue, but people had different opinion:

    http://www.inspectionnews.net/home_i...struction.html

    Thanks


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Good Lord! That crack doesn't even garner comment. That is a ho-hum crack. Around here, flatwork cracks don't get our attention until they are gapped 1/2", heaved or settled, and jig saw in nature......and then, we just note them.

    (Yeah-yeah-yeah, I exaggerate, but only slightly )

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Henderson View Post
    Good Lord! That crack doesn't even garner comment. That is a ho-hum crack. Around here, flatwork cracks don't get our attention until they are gapped 1/2", heaved or settled, and jig saw in nature......and then, we just note them.

    (Yeah-yeah-yeah, I exaggerate, but only slightly )
    I agree. As Jerry said, concrete cracks! Would have been nice if it would have followed the joint, but it doesn't always cooperate.

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Lon: Thanks for your input. I read a lot of your good comments in this website.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Henderson View Post
    Good Lord! That crack doesn't even garner comment. That is a ho-hum crack. Around here, flatwork cracks don't get our attention until they are gapped 1/2", heaved or settled, and jig saw in nature......and then, we just note them.

    (Yeah-yeah-yeah, I exaggerate, but only slightly )
    - - - Updated - - -

    Are you going to write this in your report?


    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Heiler View Post
    I agree. As Jerry said, concrete cracks! Would have been nice if it would have followed the joint, but it doesn't always cooperate.



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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Tao View Post
    The agent I worked with 2 weeks ago sent me two images today(I found a long crack in the garage in that inspection). In today's images, similarly there is a long crack in an attached garage which obviously travels through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room.


    My opinion is "engineering evaluation". However, She sent to two other inspectors before asking me the same question, the following are the responses from them:


    “The garage concrete is a separate pour from the house foundation. This is a sizeable crack, yes, but what I would do and would recommend would be clean out as much as possible taking out any loose material and fill with concrete as needed to smooth the crack. I would not be overly concerned with structure with this crack.”



    "Cracks in the concrete floor of a garage are not a structural concern, they should be sealed with an appropriate material."



    How do you think about this issue? Thanks
    Mike, you seem like a nice guy who is trying to do your best for your client and I do not want to dissuade you from seeking information here. I do want to encourage you to step away from the "inspector speak" and canned phrases that have come with your inspection schooling and/or inspection software canned phrases.

    "engineering evaluation" is not an opinion. It is a partial phrase that should never appear alone in an inspection report. Hopefully that is short hand used only to describe what you actually wrote in your report.

    I would encourage you to write your reports in plain english as if you have your client standing next to you talking about the house. Your client needs information as well as direction. If you think the crack is big enough to affect the stability of the house foundation or whatever, say just that in plain english.

    All inspectors have to start somewhere and congratulations on seeking more information.

    If this crack was the worst of what was visible is would barely make mention in my report and certainly not a recommendation that the client hire another person to give them an opinion that they already paid me to provide.
    As others have said, all concrete cracks. Continue your education and learn to tell the difference about concrete cracks and share that with your clients.
    Contrary to what the inspection schools tell you, our job is not to "defer to other professionals", grow a pair and give your opinion. Yes, there is a time to defer when something is going on that you do not understand but everyday cracks in concrete is NOT the time to defer.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post

    I would encourage you to write your reports in plain english as if you have your client standing next to you talking about the house. Your client needs information as well as direction. If you think the crack is big enough to affect the stability of the house foundation or whatever, say just that in plain english.

    If this crack was the worst of what was visible is would barely make mention in my report and certainly not a recommendation that the client hire another person to give them an opinion that they already paid me to provide.
    Agree.
    That floor has a "common" or ordinary crack. Some here on this forum don't like to use "common" or "ordinary" but it's plain English that customers understand. I've had many clients who were structural or other types of engineers who had no complaint with those terms.

    For that floor, I use "Visible area appears serviceable (common cracks)"

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Based upon the photos, it does not look like the floor settled. I like to stamp my foot or jump a bit on slabs to listen/feel for voids. From what I am seeing, it looks like a non-structural shrinkage crack.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Based upon the photos, it does not look like the floor settled. I like to stamp my foot or jump a bit on slabs to listen/feel for voids. From what I am seeing, it looks like a non-structural shrinkage crack.


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    I appreciate all your inputs.

    Thanks


  14. #14

    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Where Im from all garage floors are just slabs (except very rare occasions where there is a basement under the garage) I say the same thing about garage cracks almost all the time, not a major or structural concern but I suggest all concrete cracks be sealed and maintained.


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    It's also a possibility that the sawn control joints were either cut too late, or too shallow, allowing the concrete to crack where it wanted to. And to be clear, such joints are not expansion joints (as someone previously mentioned). Expansion joints contain elements that can compress, allowing adjacent concrete to expand without destroying itself. Also, such cracks can't be effectively sealed with concrete, as a linked reference suggested.


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Tao View Post
    In the images, there is a long crack in an attached garage which obviously travels through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room. How do you think about this issue? Thanks
    Please explain, "through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room."

    NOTE: The slabs is the last concrete pour.

    I suspect the same batch off the truck, Same temperature & atmospheric conditions.

    NOTE: Nice concrete floating, crack kerf cuts, "but the concrete looks Rich and Dry"
    That will make the slab shrink.

    A slab should float on aggregate and be isolated from walls and posts to perform its best.


    Hypothesis; Hot day dry rich concrete not ideally isolated from the surrounding components.

    Concrete shrinks.

    It would be a mention and nothing more but I am limited to 2 pic's.

    Observation: 1/32" inch lateral concrete crack.
    Location; The garage and xxxx room.
    Recommend: A licensed concrete garage floor repair company.
    Recommend a flexible patch solution.
    Limitation: Slab concealed base aggregate and underlying components. No concrete testing performed. This not a technical exhaustive report.



    Mike, how old is the home?

    Last edited by ROBERT YOUNG; 03-25-2015 at 04:46 AM.
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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Not sure the year of that house. These two images are from an agent.
    Here are my images from a 5 years old house:

    I meant "the garage foundation perimeter and the crack extended into adjacent room".
    I will probably not mention engineering evaluation in future.
    But I discussed these images with my training school teacher and she thought I should refer to engineer and she has over 20 years experience.
    Even in the other thread, some inspectors have difference opinions about those cracks.



    Quote Originally Posted by ROBERT YOUNG View Post
    Please explain, "through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room."

    NOTE: The slabs is the last concrete pour.

    I suspect the same batch off the truck, Same temperature & atmospheric conditions.

    NOTE: Nice concrete floating, crack kerf cuts, "but the concrete looks Rich and Dry"
    That will make the slab shrink.

    A slab should float on aggregate and be isolated from walls and posts to perform its best.


    Hypothesis; Hot day dry rich concrete not ideally isolated from the surrounding components.

    Concrete shrinks.

    It would be a mention and nothing more but I am limited to 2 pic's.

    Observation: 1/32" inch lateral concrete crack.
    Location; The garage and xxxx room.
    Recommend: A licensed concrete garage floor repair company.
    Recommend a flexible patch solution.
    Limitation: Slab concealed base aggregate and underlying components. No concrete testing performed. This not a technical exhaustive report.



    Mike, how old is the home?


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Not sure the year of that house. These two images are from an agent.
    Here are my images from a 5 years old house:

    I meant "the garage foundation perimeter and the crack extended into adjacent room".
    I will probably not mention engineering evaluation in future.
    But I discussed these images with my training school teacher and she thought I should refer to engineer and she has over 20 years experience.
    Even in the other thread, some inspectors have difference opinions about those cracks.



    Quote Originally Posted by ROBERT YOUNG View Post
    Please explain, "through the garage perimeter and extended into the adjacent room."

    NOTE: The slabs is the last concrete pour.

    I suspect the same batch off the truck, Same temperature & atmospheric conditions.

    NOTE: Nice concrete floating, crack kerf cuts, "but the concrete looks Rich and Dry"
    That will make the slab shrink.

    A slab should float on aggregate and be isolated from walls and posts to perform its best.


    Hypothesis; Hot day dry rich concrete not ideally isolated from the surrounding components.

    Concrete shrinks.

    It would be a mention and nothing more but I am limited to 2 pic's.

    Observation: 1/32" inch lateral concrete crack.
    Location; The garage and xxxx room.
    Recommend: A licensed concrete garage floor repair company.
    Recommend a flexible patch solution.
    Limitation: Slab concealed base aggregate and underlying components. No concrete testing performed. This not a technical exhaustive report.



    Mike, how old is the home?



  19. #19
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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Tao View Post
    Not sure the year of that house. These two images are from an agent.
    Here are my images from a 5 years old house:

    I meant "the garage foundation perimeter and the crack extended into adjacent room".
    I will probably not mention engineering evaluation in future.
    But I discussed these images with my training school teacher and she thought I should refer to engineer and she has over 20 years experience.
    Even in the other thread, some inspectors have difference opinions about those cracks.
    "These two images are from an agent."
    Did you tell him/her that this make take time and you could not go any faster, and how much to charge their clients?
    Just kidding Mike.

    On a serious note;
    I meant "the garage foundation perimeter and the crack extended into adjacent room".

    Mike, A crack running the perimeter would be a circumference.
    A perimeter follows the contour of the foundation.
    "Perimeter drainage, perimeter fence."
    PERIMETER: A perimeter is a path that "surrounds a two-dimensional shape."
    Greek "peri" (around) and "meter" (measure)
    I am not meaning to correct you. I just hope that helps you.

    Running the width or length of the home would be a straight or semi straight line. A diagonal line would start my bat senese tinglings.

    I would call an specialized repair foundation company if the crack continued through a foundation wall like a stem wall or the foundation itself.
    Look at cracks in a 360 degree view. Think 3 dimensionally/vertically/horizontally.

    Ground settlement or movement can expose cracks that are displayed in your photo. Those guys in California or close to faults are use to see concrete cracking.

    Solid Foundation repair companies come with in house ENGINEERS. Usually $450:00 to $600.00 for a report and fix write up in my neck of the woods.

    Thanks for the reply.
    Pst...tell the agent to refer you some clients for helping out.

    Last edited by ROBERT YOUNG; 03-26-2015 at 02:04 AM.
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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Concrete does two things:
    - 1) Concrete gets hard.
    - 2) Concrete cracks.

    Laying out control joints for concrete cracks to follow *does not* guaranty that the concrete will pay attention and will crack at the control joint.
    Agreed with Jerry. I see cracks like these all the time in garages and basements on floors that do not follow the rules and do not crack at the expansion joints. Concrete has a mind of its own and will crack where it wants to crack. As long as the crack is not separated or displaced or showing evidence of water coming up through it, I call it out as a typical shrinkage crack and let it go at that. At most, I tell people they can seal the crack if they don't like looking at it.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    1: Concrete has a mind of its own and will crack where it wants to crack.
    2: evidence of water coming up through it,
    3: At most, I tell people they can seal the crack if they don't like looking at it.

    1: Concrete transforms from a liquid to sold.
    In slabs, the substrate, aggregate and soil consistency can affect the solid form that will exhibit concrete cracking.

    2: Water under the slab effects the soil's composition / placement. It is also live loading, exerted pressure.
    The most typical term would be hydrostatic pressure. when the vertical liquid, water, pushes the liquid under the footing and into openings at the footing foundation intersection.

    Lock key/kerf in the footings are rarely done correctly.
    A labour etches out a inverted ferrow with a 2x4' and the liquid concrete slumps deforming the kerf. It should be dimensional angels. A dovetailed kerf made with extruded styrofoam would be better. The styrofoam can be extracted when the concrete is cured.

    3: Sealing is acceptable/appropriate BUT any slab crack should be examined by someone capable of determining the cause.

    JMO

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Tao View Post
    But I discussed these images with my training school teacher and she thought I should refer to engineer and she has over 20 years experience.
    Even in the other thread, some inspectors have difference opinions about those cracks.
    Your teacher's opinion touches on one of the major rifts over inspection style in this industry. There are HIs totally in the CYA camp and refer just about anything for further evaluation by appropriate expert. Others feel that they are hired to identify defects and call for remedial action rather than evaluation.

    Most newbies in this biz don't have the expertise in all areas of home construction to be qualified to do the later. But you should work hard at educating yourself to get closer to that ability. In my opinion, most HIs will see defects and suspected defects where further evaluation is the appropriate advice, but as you gain experience and knowledge, you should see fewer of those.

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Concrete does two things:
    - 1) Concrete gets hard.
    - 2) Concrete cracks.

    Laying out control joints for concrete cracks to follow *does not* guaranty that the concrete will pay attention and will crack at the control joint.
    Agree.
    I would add 3) doesn't get stolen

    I have a check box in my report that states "typical cracks". Check the box, move on.


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by ROBERT YOUNG View Post
    ....... any slab crack should be examined by someone capable of determining the cause.

    JMO

    To each his own and maybe these types of cracks are more substantial in your area. But around here, if I called for expert evaluation every time I saw a shrinkage crack, I would be calling for them at every inspection and buyers would be paying an expert to come and tell them the same thing.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    I have to say "thank you" to all of your inputs again. It is really helpful!
    From the replies, actually, I can sense that people from high earthquake areas seem more confident with "typical". Others may be more cautious like me.

    Can I ask those confident people one more question?

    Has anybody heard any story that a HI gets sued because he/she missed a settlement garage slab crack by saying "typical"? I was not that experienced in dealing with the cracks. I know most of them is just OK. However, I was told some times, those cracks develop very fast. I really hope I can hear some stories in the other end. Or maybe I worried too much!


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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    I frequently (including yesterday) mark a driveway as "serviceable" with major cracks. The one yesterday had two cracks gapped 1/2" to 1", but was still doing its duty. I recommended sealing the cracks but nothing more. I've been making these kind of calls for 17 years without ever being called back. For your area, if in doubt, drive around and get a sense of what constitutes "typical" and you can accurately call out "typical cracking". I'll add that when I see a jig saw puzzle of hairline cracks, I call that "major cracking" but depending on the over all condition, may still declare the slab serviceable. I don't like to see trip hazards (>1") or settling/heaving more than 1/2" and will not call those conditions as "serviceable".

    As Raymond said, my comments are only for driveway flatwork. Foundations are an entirely different animal. Basement slabs have more generous tolerances than foundations, but tighter tolerances than driveways and sidewalks.

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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Lon, thanks. Try to understand better.
    You meant garage cracks are included in drive way cracks.
    In other words, the garage and drive way are in the same slab.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Henderson View Post
    I frequently (including yesterday) mark a driveway as "serviceable" with major cracks. The one yesterday had two cracks gapped 1/2" to 1", but was still doing its duty. I recommended sealing the cracks but nothing more. I've been making these kind of calls for 17 years without ever being called back. For your area, if in doubt, drive around and get a sense of what constitutes "typical" and you can accurately call out "typical cracking". I'll add that when I see a jig saw puzzle of hairline cracks, I call that "major cracking" but depending on the over all condition, may still declare the slab serviceable. I don't like to see trip hazards (>1") or settling/heaving more than 1/2" and will not call those conditions as "serviceable".

    As Raymond said, my comments are only for driveway flatwork. Foundations are an entirely different animal. Basement slabs have more generous tolerances than foundations, but tighter tolerances than driveways and sidewalks.



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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Tao View Post
    Lon, thanks. Try to understand better.
    You meant garage cracks are included in drive way cracks.
    In other words, the garage and drive way are in the same slab.
    Sorry for not making that clear.

    In general, I treat the slabs the same, although they are sometimes poured at separate times. However, in a garage, I don't like to see conditions that will cause melting snow off of a car to drain anywhere but toward the garage opening and will call that condition out.

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  29. #29
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    Default Re: Cracks in garage floor

    What you have to learn over time is why cracks occur. If there are not proper control joints in the slab it will crack. If the slab has not settled and the cracks are not offset, there is not much else that could cause the cracks. I am always concerned about voids below slabs, whether there are cracks or not. Those are the slabs that concern me, because occasionally they fail suddenly.

    Here are typical shrinkage cracks in a basement floor slab of a new house I inspected two days ago. They put in control joints that are less than 1/2" deep. Standards call for at least 1/4 the thickness of the slab.

    P3241016 (512x341).jpg


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