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  1. #1
    tj moore1's Avatar
    tj moore1 Guest

    Default Foundation questions part 2


    Just wanted a quick opinion on my foundation wall. This is the only exposed wall (rest of basement is finished) and there is no cracking in the floor that I can see. Windows and doors open close fine throughout the home. Minor relief cracking in corners of some windows. Pictures here :Pictures by tjndnd - Photobucket

    My concerns:

    Vertical hairline crack down to the floor. (shrinkage)

    Slight bulge in middle forms of wall (not "horizontal" bow like from external force....only in middle form- concrete possibly poured unevenly?)

    Diagonal hairline crack about 3 feet, running up from floor (shrinkage?)

    Walls/floors "slightly" off in spots - leaning the direction it would if the left foundation wall settled slightly.

    Two hairline cracks on outside of foundation, under garage.

    Home is 20 years old, and has sold 6 times since 1993. Inspector said that I could fill cracks, but they aren't anything to be majorly worried about - not structrually related. Called structrual engineer, explained cracks - they also said that minor cracking isn't a major concern and he might not even worry about filling it.

    Am I being super paranoid? Or, is some minor cracking, and wall/floors being off normal. I posted before and got some great answers - this time I posted with more pictures......Thank you very much!

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN

    Default Re: Foundation questions part 2

    I think you are beating this horse to death! If it is this big of a concern hire a PE who specializes in residential foundations.
    Go back to the thread that you started yesterday and read what folks are telling you...

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Lake Barrington, IL

    Default Re: Foundation questions part 2

    TJ - Your new photos indicate no concern. Part of what you are seeing are the separations between the different truck loads of concrete - it's normal. Over the past 19 years I've looked at many homes on both sides of Randall Road and I can pretty much assure you that your foundation is no different than anyone else's out there.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Oregon, USA

    Default Re: Foundation questions part 2


    First of all, the (mostly) vertical crack shown in the picture with the red steel support beam embedded in the wall's block-out is not "hairline." By definition, a hairline crack in concrete is generally less than 0.003" in width, or the width of a human hair. A true hairline crack would barely be visible in a picture taken from that distance. The crack shown looks to be somewhere between 1/16" and 1/8" in width, or at least 20 times wider than a true hairline crack.

    The crack shown started at the block-out in the original wall, and worked its way downward. The block-out itself is actually a stress-raiser, as its location results in an abrupt change in the wall's cross-section (even though it's filled in with concrete). And the beam actually looks like a retrofit, added after the home's original construction. Without being on site to perform a more thorough evaluation, I suspect the crack may have been caused by differential footing and/or wall settlement, probably originating near a corner of the foundation.

    Before offering a "don't worry about it, all concrete cracks" advisory, I think I would want to know if the crack shown is actually growing and getting wider. And if it is growing, finding the causes of same (and taking steps to mitigate them) would be worthwhile before attempting repairs. An extensometer can be used for measuring changes in crack width, and can be purchased for less than $20 by anyone. Or go the cheap route and get a crack comparator (Portland Cement Association used to give them away, probably charges for them now). Won't be as accurate, but can be made to work adequately. I have a small stash of them laying around somewhere, if anyone wants one.

    If cracks are truly dormant, seal them only to prevent future water intrusion, or if it makes one feel better.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Caledon, Ontario

    Default Re: Foundation questions part 2

    The value of experience is not in seeing much, but in seeing wisely.


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