Request the Builder
Q: I’m thinking of acquiring a household that has a crawlspace. The foundation is in pretty negative form. Although the property appears to be really undesirable, it really is acquired excellent bones. Is it feasible to completely take out a poor foundation and install a new, taller 1? What is actually concerned? Who does this form of do the job? What would you make positive receives completed if you’re likely to all this perform? — Hanna S., Hartford, Conn.
A: Any individual acquiring these types of a dilapidated residence requires to negotiate a genuinely superior offer. The excellent information is that the previous foundation can be eradicated and replaced with a new forged-concrete basis, developing a comprehensive basement. The job is not significantly various than eating an elephant. You just get one particular bite at a time.
Hanna’s query reminded me of a interesting time early in my making vocation. Fresh out of faculty, I had just rehabbed my very first dwelling in Cincinnati. It failed to want a new basis, but it was otherwise in very bad condition. 4 months of operate reworked the residence again to its former glory.
About a half-mile absent, a developer needed to place in a little searching shopping mall, but there ended up about 10 residences and an apartment developing in the way. Not only did he obtain all these qualities, but he also proceeded to move them about a mile away on some wooded land he purchased at the end of a avenue. I try to remember seeing these homes, and elements of properties that had been cut in 50 percent, creeping down the road to their new foundations.
Hanna desires to speak to diverse foundation contractors to see which ones have done just what she wants to do. Not all basis contractors have the knowledge to operate underneath a household that is suspended above the get the job done web-site, sitting on cribbing made with timbers the measurement of railroad ties.
These basis contractors will also know the names of the distinct household-relocating firms in the location. The first action in the approach of tearing out the aged foundation and installing the new 1 is to prepare the dwelling as if it is really going to be moved to a new locale. Dwelling-moving firms do this like you could possibly brush your teeth. It is really just yet another task for them.
I would take into account several things if this ended up my career. For starters, I might want to make sure the residence was lifted high ample so there was favourable drainage away from all sides of the property. The creating code’s least typical is 6 inches of tumble in the ground in the first 10 ft of horizontal distance away from the foundation. I think that 12 inches of drop is a great deal better.
If the finances enables, I would also test to pour the new foundation partitions as high as doable so a accurate 8-foot ceiling height may be obtained in the basement. Hanna wants to make certain a fantastic substantial-effectiveness vapor barrier is installed less than the new basement concrete ground.
I would also put in interconnected perforated 4-inch pipes beneath the new basement slab to capture radon gasoline that may be seeping up from the regional bedrock. A riser pipe that connects to the underneath-slab pipes ought to then be extended up to the roof to vent the radon.
Q: I’m about to install ceramic tile on a concrete floor of a 40-yr-previous dwelling. The concrete flooring has cracks in it. This is a Do-it-yourself endeavor, and I you should not have the more dollars to set up the expensive membrane that I should use. Are my new tiles likely to crack? What would you do? What about grouting the tile? — Sarah H., League Metropolis, Texas
A: I applaud Sarah’s spirit, and she can attain success if she does a several basic factors. There are unique crack-isolation membranes that uncouple the tile from the genuine concrete slab. She could possibly value all of them to see if there is 1 she can find the money for.
You will find not a question in my intellect that the new tile will create cracks instantly on leading of the cracked slab if no membrane is made use of. Simply because Sarah’s budget is tighter than a banjo string, she could possibly acquire a chance using two levels of 30-pound felt paper. This is a pretty reasonably priced materials, and even though I’ve never made use of it as a tile crack-isolation membrane, I really feel it has a fantastic opportunity of executing rather nicely.
If the cracks in the slab are broader than 3/16 inch, I would to start with try out to bond the concrete collectively by injecting a large-energy epoxy into the crack. This will go a lengthy way to stop upcoming cracked tile.
I’d then put in the felt paper just as you would a person of the fancy membranes. This demands a mattress of thinset adhesive that you then go over with the to start with layer of felt paper. Sleek the felt paper employing a rented linoleum roller. Be certain to install the felt paper so it crosses the cracks at a 90-diploma angle if achievable.
I would then put in the 2nd layer of felt paper over the to start with layer at a 90-degree angle. I might not put in any thinset in between these two levels. The body weight of the thinset underneath the tile and the tile alone will press this layer towards the first layer.
After the tile is mounted, Sarah should really go to my web page, AsktheBuilder.com, and look at my four-part movie sequence about how to grout ceramic floor tile. She’ll get experienced outcomes with a minimum of apply.
Tim Carter writes for the Tribune Content material Company. Check out www.askthebuilder.com for films and information on household projects.