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  1. #1
    Don Jackson's Avatar
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    Default Flooring: bad slab?

    Hello (from a novice Home Inspector),

    A friend of mine has asked me to look at his kitchen (tiled) floor, as a favor, due to a crack that extends diagonally across the entire floor, which was installed on a slab. I have not made it over to look at it yet.

    I asked several questions to draw a mental picture. From what I gather, the crack sometimes follows the grout, but also includes the tiles themselves. It is a relatively new home (2000+). I told him it could be due to several reasons...poorly installed tile, cracked foundation (slab), curing foundation, or moisture getting through the grout. I also told him to look around the interior door frames for vertical cracks, and if they are getting larger, plus to check the vertical door frames with a level.

    He called me today stating that he now has a significant (noticible) area in his living room carpet that is quite wet...again, installed on slab. He called the carpet installer who checked it and found...obviously, moisture. The rest of the carpet is dry...just in that one area is it wet.

    I know decifering/diagnosing whether a foundation (slab) is in good condition or not is difficult, and beyond our scope of practice, but I'm looking for any advice as to what I may be over-looking. Any clues I should look for other than suggesting he rip up the tile and carpet?

    Any positive help would be appreciated.

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  2. #2
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Jackson View Post
    Hello (from a novice Home Inspector),

    A friend of mine has asked me to look at his kitchen (tiled) floor, as a favor, due to a crack that extends diagonally across the entire floor, which was installed on a slab. I have not made it over to look at it yet.

    I asked several questions to draw a mental picture. From what I gather, the crack sometimes follows the grout, but also includes the tiles themselves. It is a relatively new home (2000+). I told him it could be due to several reasons...poorly installed tile, cracked foundation (slab), curing foundation, or moisture getting through the grout. I also told him to look around the interior door frames for vertical cracks, and if they are getting larger, plus to check the vertical door frames with a level.

    He called me today stating that he now has a significant (noticible) area in his living room carpet that is quite wet...again, installed on slab. He called the carpet installer who checked it and found...obviously, moisture. The rest of the carpet is dry...just in that one area is it wet.

    I know decifering/diagnosing whether a foundation (slab) is in good condition or not is difficult, and beyond our scope of practice, but I'm looking for any advice as to what I may be over-looking. Any clues I should look for other than suggesting he rip up the tile and carpet?

    Any positive help would be appreciated.
    Sounds like a leak under the slab and not just from drainage. A drainage leak is not under pressure and usually soaks into the soil slowly. A water line leak will continuosly push water into the soil and also push it up thru the slab. Don't know the land lay out so cannot comment more on other conditions. Tell him to not run wate rin the home and then look at the water meter. Let it stand with no water running for a half hour and see if the needle moves. Other than that I am all out with lack of info.


  3. #3
    Don Jackson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Thanks Ted! I will do just that. I will take a look at everything and take photos and provide more info if need be in order to figure this out. Thanks again Ted.


  4. #4
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Jackson View Post
    Thanks Ted! I will do just that. I will take a look at everything and take photos and provide more info if need be in order to figure this out. Thanks again Ted.
    Don: He needs to have both ends o the system leak tested before damage is done.

    Aaron


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Jackson View Post
    A friend of mine has asked me to look at his kitchen (tiled) floor, as a favor, due to a crack that extends diagonally across the entire floor, which was installed on a slab.
    .

    Let me guess: There is an inside corner to the house at or near one end of the diagonal crack.

    Am I right?

    Now for a statement: When tiles are properly installed (laid) onto a slab, they are fully bonded to the slab (that is the intent). Thus, when the slab cracks from initial settlement (all houses have initial settlement), the tile cracks with the slab.

    Yes, one go to all the time, effort and trouble to install a crack separation membrane, but no one does it properly, so you end up with worse problems than when you started by fully adhering the tile to the slab.

    I always advised my clients to wait until just before the one year warranty to get the builder to replace the cracked tiles. That will allow for as much initial settlement as possible, then make one repair at one time, that way you will not have all those "grout repairs" all over (you will see a slight difference where the new grout ended).

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    .

    Let me guess: There is an inside corner to the house at or near one end of the diagonal crack.

    Am I right?

    Now for a statement: When tiles are properly installed (laid) onto a slab, they are fully bonded to the slab (that is the intent). Thus, when the slab cracks from initial settlement (all houses have initial settlement), the tile cracks with the slab.

    Yes, one go to all the time, effort and trouble to install a crack separation membrane, but no one does it properly, so you end up with worse problems than when you started by fully adhering the tile to the slab.

    I always advised my clients to wait until just before the one year warranty to get the builder to replace the cracked tiles. That will allow for as much initial settlement as possible, then make one repair at one time, that way you will not have all those "grout repairs" all over (you will see a slight difference where the new grout ended).

    Jerry

    He says the carpet is wet in the living room in the same area that the crack goes under. As far as tiles cracking I am in older homes as well as new homes all the time where the original tiles are in and not cracked and that was in Florida and here in TX. If there were no wet areas in the carpet in the exact same direction as the cracked tiles in the living room I might well agree with you. It do sound like there might be a bit of a problem in that there home.


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Jerry

    He says the carpet is wet in the living room in the same area that the crack goes under.
    Actually, the post stated that the tiles were cracked. Which is what I addressed.

    Then he stated there "is not" wetness, which (to me) means that the crack has been there, but the wetness is a new issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Jackson View Post
    He called me today stating that he now has a significant (noticible) area in his living room carpet that is quite wet...
    Yes, I did not address the wetness issue with my other post.

    The wetness problem would be many things 'other than' a leak.

    I had a house which I inspected during construction, I watched the underground plumbing being installed, the slab being prepped ... concrete was supposed to be poured on one day, I went out on the stated day and it had been poured the day before - so I did not see that, then inspected the rest of the house as it was constructed.

    Right after my client moved in, which was right after the wood floor was installed, they noticed a 'darker area' forming in the living room, and called me.

    I measured, monitored, and investigated (to the best I could back then, before the internet) and put my thinking cap on (the home inspector's best tool is "their thinking cap").

    After measuring the moisture outline in the wood (for the umpteenth time) I told my client that there is "only one thing I can think of which would allow and cause this", and that "one thing" was that the practice (back then) of using a garden rake to pull the wire mesh up into the concrete while the concrete was being poured "must have caught the edge of the moisture barrier and pulled it back too".

    After many calls between my client (an attorney), the builder, and myself, it was agreed that the builder would come out and core drill a 16" hole in the center of the living room to verify that the moisture barrier was intact (as the builder swore it was).

    The builder even told me that if they found the moisture barrier to be intact, that *I* would have to pay for the cost of the concrete cutting/drilling. I told him "no problem, and YOU, sir, will have to pay ME 3 times that amount *when you find the moisture barrier is NOT intact". Agreed!

    Well, there was no moisture barrier in that 16" diameter hole. In fact, you had to use your fingers and feel back as far as you could and you could just touch the moisture barrier on each side of the hole, the moisture barrier had been pulled back about 20" at that widest part, then (I have tape marked it out previously with my moisture meter) it tapered back to nothing about 6' out in each direction along that seam. That means there was an area about 12' long, 20" wide at the widest point, which did not have a moisture barrier.

    There were several other areas around the house like this, just not quite as large as that one.

    The groundwater was being forced up through that area by hydrostatic pressure, through the missing moisture barrier, THROUGH THE SLAB, and soaked into the wood floor enough that you could squeeze water out of the wood floor just by pressing your thumb down onto the wood.

    Now, think what can happen where there is a CRACK through which that water can come up through, without having to *soak through the concrete slab*.

    I am presuming there is a crack below the carpet, but crack or not crack, *WATER CAN* come up through a slab like that. *I* have personally seen it happen.

    And the builder bought that house back, making my client whole (which was a lot more than just the price of the house), for that reason and other reasons.

    What should Don do?

    1) Have the carpet pulled back and look for cracks.

    2) Use his moisture meter (I used my Tramex) and map out the area with elevated moisture. If this does not work, tape plastic sheeting over the area in 2'x2' sections (or whatever size you want), that will trap the moisture coming through in the various sections, allowing you to see where the moisture is coming through the most.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    All of the fine erudition regarding impervious moisture barriers, it is still my contention that a plumbing supply and DWV leak test should be performed in order to substantiate or eliminate this as the source of the moisture.

    Aaron



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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    it is still my contention that a plumbing supply and DWV leak test should be performed in order to substantiate or eliminate this as the source of the moisture.
    Nothing wrong with doing that - in fact it makes perfect sense to start the investigation by doing the easy things first, and eliminating the easy things first.

    I was providing insight into what it 'might be' when it is found that there is 'no leak'.

    After all, "It is a relatively new home" (however old that means, but I am presuming it means 'within a year old, two years tops'). It's not like this 'just started on a 40 year old home', in which case the first two things to suspect would be: 1) severe and unusual amounts of rainfall; 2) leaks.

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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Nothing wrong with doing that - in fact it makes perfect sense to start the investigation by doing the easy things first, and eliminating the easy things first.

    I was providing insight into what it 'might be' when it is found that there is 'no leak'.

    After all, "It is a relatively new home" (however old that means, but I am presuming it means 'within a year old, two years tops'). It's not like this 'just started on a 40 year old home', in which case the first two things to suspect would be: 1) severe and unusual amounts of rainfall; 2) leaks.
    JP: Granted. It's just that I am a proponent of Occam's Razor.

    Aaron


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    I'm just a small town boy with limited English skills being as English is Greek to me.

    Tell me again in simple English words ... (if the word as more than one letter in it, I get easily confused).

    (Yeah, I looked it up, but what I found does not succinctly jive with how you used it.)

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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    I'm just a small town boy with limited English skills being as English is Greek to me.

    Tell me again in simple English words ... (if the word as more than one letter in it, I get easily confused).

    (Yeah, I looked it up, but what I found does not succinctly jive with how you used it.)
    Simplest answer is usually the best. (Texas boy paraphrase)

    Jim Luttrall
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    Simplest answer is usually the best. (Texas boy paraphrase)
    That's an incorrect re-statement of it (at least from what I read on my searches for it).

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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    That's an incorrect re-statement of it (at least from what I read on my searches for it).
    JP (country boy, yeah, right): Jim simply gave you the simplest explanation of the meaning. Another simple explanation, though not a favorite of mine, would be the KISS theory, "keep it simple, stupid".

    From Wikipedia:
    "Occam's razor (sometimes spelled Ockham's razor) is a principle attributed to the 14th-century English logician and Franciscan friar, William of Ockham. The principle states that the explanation of any phenomenon should make as few assumptions as possible, eliminating those that make no difference in the observable predictions of the explanatory hypothesis or theory. The principle is often expressed in Latin as the lex parsimoniae ("law of parsimony" or "law of succinctness"): "entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem", roughly translated as "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity". An alternative version "Pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate" translates "plurality should not be posited without necessity". [1]
    This is often paraphrased as "All other things being equal, the simplest solution is the best." In other words, when multiple competing theories are equal in other respects, the principle recommends selecting the theory that introduces the fewest assumptions and postulates the fewest entities. It is in this sense that Occam's razor is usually understood. This is, however, incorrect. Occam's razor is not concerned with the simplicity or complexity of a good explanation as such; it only demands that the explanation be free of elements that have nothing to do with the phenomenon (and the explanation).
    Originally a tenet of the reductionist philosophy of nominalism, it is more often taken today as an heuristicmaxim (rule of thumb) that advises economy, parsimony, or simplicity, often or especially in scientific theories. Here the same caveat applies to confounding topicality with mere simplicity. (A superficially simple phenomenon may have a complex mechanism behind it. A simple explanation would be simplistic if it failed to capture all the essential and relevant parts.)"

    So then, I used the term as a heuristic maxim or rule of thumb to mean that the simplest solution is often the best. YOu, on the other hand can read it any way you like, just so long as communication between us is not your goal. You might even apply Einstein's Razor as a defense here which says "It can scarcely be denied that the supreme goal of all theory is to make the irreducible basic elements as simple and as few as possible without having to surrender the adequate representation of a single datum of experience." Variants: Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler. Make things as simple as possible, but not simpler. KISS - but never oversimplify.

    There are lots of these razors. One of my favorite, which may be aptly applied to our not-too-soon-to-be-history s(h)itting president is Hanlon's Razor: "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." Variants: Never ascribe to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity. Never ascribe to malice, that which can be explained by incompetence. Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

    Aaron


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Aaron

    I do adhere to KISS

    I read reports all the time that clients have gotten a hold of and they are trying to just go thru it to find the previous concerns. Most of the time I have to help them with the report. Their frustration is on their faces. They just want to see the concerns. They ALL "what is with all this other stuff." I have to explain that all of that filler is for nothing more than protecting the inspector. "Their question is always. "Why do they have to have it thru the entire report? "Why can't they put all those disclaimers and fill in the beginning or the end so when it comes to the report we can just find the concerns?"

    The summaries from most folks are formatted just as the report. All the disclaimers are mixed in with it. All the pictures are in the summary. All the disclaimers of "I cannot be expected to see thru walls" "I do not know the surface condition of the roof sheathing because the shingles are on it obstructing my visual inspection".

    Then after that half a book of the summary you get into the report which is an exact copy of the summary. Before you get into even the summary or the report you have to filter thru pages of absolute useless fill.

    I don't do a summary. I only add pictures to the actual report that are actual concerns. Most of the time those pictures are in the end of the report and a name tag at the bottom. They read the report then look at the pics and say "oh, this is the picture of the crack in the brick on the right side of the home"

    I do not add any disclaimers throughout my report. Well, a couple of minor inspector to local code disclaimers are in there.

    I do not have a large paragraph in the report for a "Their is leak at the trap under the kitchen sink"

    KISS. I strongly adhere to that.

    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 01-12-2009 at 10:36 AM.

  16. #16
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Aaron

    I do adhere to KISS

    I read reports all the time that clients have gotten a hold of and they are trying to just go thru it to find the previous concerns. Most of the time I have to help them with the report. Their frustration is on their faces. They just want to see the concerns. They ALL "what is with all this other stuff." I have to explain that all of that filler is for nothing more than protecting the inspector. "Their question is always. "Why do they have to have it thru the entire report? "Why can't they put all those disclaimers and fill in the beginning or the end so when it comes to the report we can just find the concerns?"

    The summaries from most folks are formatted just as the report. All the disclaimers are mixed in with it. All the pictures are in the summary. All the disclaimers of "I cannot be expected to see thru walls" "I do not know the surface condition of the roof sheathing because the shingles are on it obstructing my visual inspection".

    Then after that half a book of the summary you get into the report which is an exact copy of the summary. Before you get into even the summary or the report you have to filter thru pages of absolute useless fill.

    I don't do a summary. I only add pictures to the actual report that are actual concerns. Most of the time those pictures are in the end of the report and a name tag at the bottom. They read the report then look at the pics and say "oh, this is the picture of the crack in the brick on the right side of the home"

    I do not add any disclaimers throughout my report. Well, a couple of minor inspector to local code disclaimers are in there.

    I do not have a large paragraph in the report for a "Their leak at the trap under the kitchen sink"

    KISS. I strongly adhere to that.
    Ted: Agreed. Summaries are for clients with advanced A.D.D. or are card-carrying Prozacians (Zoloftians, Xanaxians, et al.) - and, of course, their lazy-ass agents.

    Aaron

    Aaron


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    (to save unnecessary text I've deleted most of it, but this is the relevant part - red text is mine for highlighting)
    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    Jim simply gave you the simplest explanation of the meaning. Another simple explanation, though not a favorite of mine, would be the KISS theory, "keep it simple, stupid".

    From Wikipedia: "Occam's razor (sometimes spelled Ockham's razor) is ...
    This is often paraphrased as "All other things being equal, the simplest solution is the best." In other words, when multiple competing theories are equal in other respects, the principle recommends selecting the theory that introduces the fewest assumptions and postulates the fewest entities. It is in this sense that Occam's razor is usually understood. This is, however, incorrect. Occam's razor is not concerned with the simplicity ...


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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    (to save unnecessary text I've deleted most of it, but this is the relevant part - red text is mine for highlighting)
    ]

    JP: Selective editing will not win your argument. Taking things out of context, while the forte of most AHJs, does not become you.

    Aaron


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    ]

    JP: Selective editing will not win your argument. Taking things out of context, while the forte of most AHJs, does not become you.

    Aaron

    Aaron,

    Not taking things out of context, simply pointing out that, *in its own context and content*, it states: "This is, however, incorrect. Occam's razor is not concerned with the simplicity"

    Yeah, that was one of the references and definitions I read when I looked it up, and why (when Jim posted "Simplest answer is usually the best. (Texas boy paraphrase)" I posted "That's an incorrect re-statement of it (at least from what I read on my searches for it)."

    Aaron, read the context and content, you will find that is precisely what it says.

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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Aaron,

    Not taking things out of context, simply pointing out that, *in its own context and content*, it states: "This is, however, incorrect. Occam's razor is not concerned with the simplicity"

    Yeah, that was one of the references and definitions I read when I looked it up, and why (when Jim posted "Simplest answer is usually the best. (Texas boy paraphrase)" I posted "That's an incorrect re-statement of it (at least from what I read on my searches for it)."

    Aaron, read the context and content, you will find that is precisely what it says.
    JP: Sorry, but no cigar. Your revisionist BS will not fly by me. Fold it up and fly it in some other direction. I can bury you with authoritative references that support the use of the term in the common vernacular meaning.

    Nice try.


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    I can bury you with authoritative references that support the use of the term in the common vernacular meaning.

    Maybe you can, but not WITH THAT reference you posted. And THAT was the justification you used.

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  22. #22
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Maybe you can, but not WITH THAT reference you posted. And THAT was the justification you used.
    JP: I can even with that one, but not now. Long report to finish before 5pm.


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Back to the subject posted: The installation of adequate moisture barriers is the absolute key to preventing moisture intrusion into the building envelope in concrete slab foundation systems. I just finished a case where the developer’s foundation crew either eliminated the moisture barrier for a cost savings or just forgot about installing one?

    Of course the home devo;ped problems and eventually the building settled and became uninhabitable due to soaked wall-to-wall carpeting, cracked flooring, settlement, and eventual mold growth. The litigation resulted because the engineering firm that was retained to conduct inspection of the slab before the buyers closed escrow noted that there where no problems, when in fact every local old time home inspector in the county knew that this particular area was rife with cracked and settled concrete slab foundations along with moisture infiltration due to a very high water table.

    The end result was removal of the slab (8 inches thick with 5/8” rebar) and drainage system and first class moisture barrier installed. The PE who did the inspection w paid a great deal of money to settle this case and I’ve attached a few photos to show the extensive damage caused and how it was corrected. Regardless whether moisture originates from a high water table, poor drainage or broken/leaking plumbing piping, and/or a hydro heating system the end result is never going to be a cheap fix.

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    Last edited by Jerry McCarthy; 01-12-2009 at 01:41 PM.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    I have to ask the question. Is it possible that all that work cost less than a buldozer and a new structure. Just to remove the concrete and rebar from within a structure has to be enormous. I would have preferred a new home. Just trying to shore up and restore the interior of the home and try to keep it square and plumb must have been a nightmare.

    With out naming names can you give that total cost. I am seriously interested.


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Ted
    I was not privy to the final settlement on this case, but I would venture it ran somewhere between 350 & 450 K. Still, considering the home sold back in 2004 for 1.5 mill it was not a bad deal and other than a long drawn out legal wrangle the property owners are happy. (and that’s always the bottom line, right?)

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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Jerry, great pics but for the less knowledgable among us could you tell how that new system works? Are the orange areas dug down for piping and what not? Thanks


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    My bad Jerry, obviously that area is for a footing so to speak for load bearing walls now(I'm guessing, but if so is there still vapor barrier under that, meaning the orange product is not the vapor barrier?). So then I'm curious, could the concrete poured into that area not possibly penetrate/rip any barrier that is under that? Sorry for being naieve, but thanks again! Brian


  28. #28
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Robertson View Post
    My bad Jerry, obviously that area is for a footing so to speak for load bearing walls now(I'm guessing, but if so is there still vapor barrier under that, meaning the orange product is not the vapor barrier?). So then I'm curious, could the concrete poured into that area not possibly penetrate/rip any barrier that is under that? Sorry for being naieve, but thanks again! Brian

    Orange = vapor barrier. Unless there is something sharp under the vapor barrier which there should not be that is the norm pour.


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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Brian, Ted's got it.

    Jerry McCarthy
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    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Thanks!!


  31. #31
    Don Jackson's Avatar
    Don Jackson Guest

    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Here are the images I took at the residence in question of a cracked concrete slab versus poor craftsmanship. The house is 4 years old.

    My first observation was that the grading sloped toward the home on one side of the home, plus there were no gutters on the home. So, I question a problem with the foundation due to water intrusion.

    The visible foundation did not reveal any major cracks…only one hairline crack. The homeowner stated that he saw the vapor barrier being laid. The water meter test was normal.

    I checked the interior for any doors and windows that may stick, or not close properly. All checked out to be in satisfactory condition. No vertical cracks on the interior walls, except for an interior door frame that extended up the entire frame. Measuring from the ceiling to each corner of the door frame, I found that one side was lower than the other. Probably poor craftsmanship versus cracked foundation.

    The flooring also seemed to be poor craftsmanship. The kitchen tile was cracked through the tile starting at the kitchen counter and tapered as it progressed. Some tiles were “hollow” when tapped on. Some areas adjacent to walls and a bathtub had deteriorating grout. Some carpet areas were “bunching-up” in high-traffic areas. The mysterious wet area in the living room was dry. I asked if the dog urinated there, or if someone spilled a drink, but the owner said the coffee table was over that area. No stain on the ceiling above. I think their little boy spilt a drink and doesn’t want to fess up to it.

    I believe this is a combination of problems. I recommended installing gutters and downspouts to direct water away from the foundation. I’m leaning toward poor construction…crown moldings not lining up, hollow tiles, uneven door frames and loose carpet.

    The owner asked if I would recommend removing the tile to check for a cracked foundation. Obviously I told him to hold off to see if another solution to the cause could be found. I’m sure he will have the tiles replaced…probably by himself.

    My thought is to tell him the following “If your sole purpose is to check for a cracked foundation…wait and see if any other cracks form on the walls, foundation and/or if doors and windows stop functioning properly. If you are going to replace them no matter what, then you may get your answer when you reveal the concrete slab”.

    Even though he is a friend of mine, I am leery of recommending someone to rip up something to “hopefully” find an answer. I’m also leery of stating in a report that “the construction of your home was poorly done”.

    Do you believe this is a foundation problem, or shotty work?

    I know, a lot of info…well, words anyway, but I would appreciate all of your vast experiences and input.

    [FONT='Calibri','sans-serif']Don[/font]

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  32. #32
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    All of it looks like, well, inexperienced tradesmen. If the soil slopes toward the foundation and water sits next to it and not flow around it then that is the obvious for recommending grading and drainage repairs as well as a full gutter system. I recommend those things all the time. As far as the tile cracks, they are not going to crack from one to the next unless the slab is cracked under it. Recommending an engineeer may not be the way to go but at least a foundation company to take some measurements and add to your evaluation. They work with grading and drainage all the time as well in their business and they can give a full evaluation themselves and a price, if any, to go along with it.

    Some will say the foundation man may just be looking for his next job. My opinion is that you can say that about most folks but most humans have a pretty honest side to them. Most foundation companies will state if things are beyond them and will recommend an engineer if they can't figure out the cause themselves.


    I don't know about your part of Florida but around here foundations will come out for an eval for free. I have never found one that did not say pretty much the same as I did with the exception of a few times. Those instances they recommended and engineer.

    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 01-20-2009 at 09:24 AM.

  33. #33
    Don Jackson's Avatar
    Don Jackson Guest

    Default Re: Flooring: bad slab?

    Thanks Ted!

    Actually, where the tiles begin to crack in the kitchen, on the other side of the wall at the exact same location, the tiles are cracking and have that hollow sound as well.


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