Crumbling Foundation?

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  #1  
Old 05-13-05, 03:04 PM
dianarosner
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Question Crumbling Foundation?

I need some help. My house is almost 100 years old and it has a cement foundation with a full basement. On the left side of the house, the foundation in the basement is literally crumbling. If you touch it, it crumbles to the ground in chunks. It seems dry. Other than some spots on the floor of the basement that seem damp sometimes (the cement is darker than in other spots), the rest of the basement appears to be water free and the right side wall seems solid. So what is the problem and how do I fix it? The exterior of the foundation on that side is doing almost the same thing, it appears that outside layer that is painted black is coming off and taking a layer of the cement foundation with it. Any ideas?
 
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Old 05-14-05, 12:23 PM
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Basement Walls

Without seeing the walls, this may or may not be true. But, it sounds like you have rotten concrete in that wall. This is not uncommon in houses of your age. It comes from having dirty sand when the concrete was mixed. This is why it is crumbling. About the only option you have, is to replace that concrete wall, which is not cheap. Like I say, I may be wrong, but I don't think that I am. Sorry about that.
 
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Old 05-18-05, 09:09 AM
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What about your wood wall method Jack? ie. building a pressure treated wooden foundation wall inside the old wall. See reply to me @ http://forum.doityourself.com/showthread.php?t=205971

As a follow-up Jack to my own previous post and probably of interest to Dianarossner, how long would you anticipate this method lasting? It seems to me that reasonablty well sealed pressure treated wood should last indefinately. Why would anyone go to the trouble and expense of lifting a house and repouring a concrete foundation if this wood method works and lasts?
 
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Old 05-18-05, 09:17 AM
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One more thought. It may be the case as I have been told it is for my house that minerals (salts?) in the local soil are breaking down the concrete. Nearly every house of that erea in my neighborhood has crumbling concrete from minerals in the soil leaching into the concrete with groundwater. I have a neighbor whose house has a realtively new concrete pony wall built inside the old crumbling wall for extra support and sure enough it is starting to crumble as well, so it does not seem to be a case of bad concrete, just local conditions that are not good for concrete. I have been told that no matter what solution I go with, I need to waterseal the foundation from outside to stop this decay.
 
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Old 05-22-05, 08:11 AM
dianarosner
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Thanks

Originally Posted by Jack the Contractor
Without seeing the walls, this may or may not be true. But, it sounds like you have rotten concrete in that wall. This is not uncommon in houses of your age. It comes from having dirty sand when the concrete was mixed. This is why it is crumbling. About the only option you have, is to replace that concrete wall, which is not cheap. Like I say, I may be wrong, but I don't think that I am. Sorry about that.

Thanks for the information. As much as I was hoping it wouldn't be anything so seriour, now at least I know what needs to be done to fix it. Thanks again
dianarosner
 
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