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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Canada, Québec, Brossard
    Posts
    30

    Default Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    Hello,

    I was inspecting a multiplex year 1990 with 6 unites.
    I noticed a crack on the brick wall. I couldn't see the foundation (ground level was too high).
    I then told my client that the crack could be sign of a movement coming from the footing.
    My client is a general contractor and he immediately called a guy and 15 minutes later (no joke) a hole was dogged under the crack.
    There was no crack on the foundation. Nothing. (see second picture)
    I wanted to know if this means the foundation is safe despite the crack on the brick wall or could there still be a problem with the foundation even if there was no crack on it?
    If the crack on the brick wall has nothing to do with the foundation, any theory, else then a truck hitting the brick wall or water causing the joints to crack, on what could have done this?

    thanks

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,549

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    1990 multiplex in Quebec. Is that brick veneer? If moisture got behind the brick, freeze and thaw could have caused the cracks.
    I would check anywhere that water can get in.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  3. #3
    Garry Blankenship's Avatar
    Garry Blankenship Guest

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    How high does it go ? Are there any more ? Veneer or structural ? Not a good thing any way you slice it. Defer to an unretired Watson.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
    Posts
    5,005

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    I am with John on this one.

    Is the walkway sloped towards that corner?

    Is there a downspout discharging water near this corner?


  5. #5
    Stephen G's Avatar
    Stephen G Guest

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    If thats the laneway to the right of pic one. My WAG is the moving truck or cement truck drove real close creating a way to much ground pressure at the corner.
    The you get what we see in the pretty pics...send more pics


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    BC Canada
    Posts
    368

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    If this is a structural wall, it is more serious. If a veneer, that could be the result of frame shrinkage & brick expansion.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    780

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    Looks like veneer, and I wonder how well that right edge is supported. Kinda looks like it's hanging over the edge of the foundation a bit. Maybe it's just one of the photos that makes it look that way.

    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
    - James Burgh, 1754.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Central Virginia
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    Are there any expansion or control joints in any of the walls?

    The full loathe honey, but to the hungry, even what is bitter tastes sweet.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Bennett (Denver metro), Colorado
    Posts
    1,394

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    Years ago, a six year old kid decided to take his dad's car for a drive.......into the side of my house. The brick was undamaged but the mortar was badly cracked.
    (when I got outside, the kid was in the passenger seat with his seatbelt on. The car was still in gear just pushing against the house. kinda funny in hindsight)

    So, the explanation may be as simple as a vehicle smacking the corner.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Central Virginia
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation


    Here is a good resource from The Brick Industry Association

    http://www.gobrick.com/Home/tabid/7604/Default.aspx

    Technical Notes on Brick Construction: 18 and 18A may shedmore light on this topic.

    http://www.gobrick.com/TechnicalNotes/LinkstoTechnicalNotes/tabid/11294/Default.aspx


    The full loathe honey, but to the hungry, even what is bitter tastes sweet.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Rolla, MO
    Posts
    126

    Default Re: Crack brick wall, but not foundation

    Eli

    If that is one long continuous brick wall I would initially agree with Peter... thermal movement. The linear thermal expansion of brick veneer is 0.0000031 inches/inch of wall/degree of temperature change. A 60 foot straight wall will expand or contract from the center to the outer edge or 30 foot in each direction. If the brick was laid at 60° F and the current surface temperature is 120° F on a hot summer day, that is a 60° F change. Doing the math the expansion is 0.0000031 x 60 x (30 x 12) = 0.067 inches or approximately 1/16" of movement at both ends.

    Randy Mayo, P.E.
    Residential Engineering & Inspection Services
    http://www.rlmengineers.com

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