Saving existing old 12 ft high brick masonry wall

Old 10-29-06, 06:41 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 2
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Saving existing old 12 ft high brick masonry wall

I have an old garage that has a brick masonry rear wall that we would like to save after demo. This wall is on the lot line and would act as a fence for security. Located in industrial area. Its about 12 feet high and 80 ft long. Is it possible to add something to keep from falling over in bad weather? After demo ,only the wall will be left. I could leave the 90 degree end walls out a couple feet perpendicular for strength on the ends.

Thanks in advance
Old 10-29-06, 06:56 AM
GregH's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 9,498
Received 67 Upvotes on 61 Posts
I have done something similar by sinking posts every 12 feet and attaching the wall to a pt 2x8 running across the top of the posts.
The end walls will not help because the roof structure is what gives a wall it's vertical stability.

Because of the weight of the wall and the potential for someone getting hurt if it falls you will likely need to get an engineer's certificate to go along with the permit you will need to do this.

You will be changing an existing building into a fence which will require you to conform to whatever requirements your city/municipality has.
Old 10-29-06, 07:11 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 5,651
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
Saving existing old 12 ft high brick masonry wall

As you sure the wall is brick and not block?

The two critical things are:

1. The amount of steel in the wall and the thickness of the wall.

2. The width and depth of the footing.

It may have been built as a wall to be laterally supported at the top and when would have narrower footings and less vertical steel (if any) in it. In that case, you will be hard pressed to save it and it would be cheaper to replace.

As GregH said, only an engineer can tell you if it is suitable.

Old 10-29-06, 10:00 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 1,304
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
It can be done, but probably not so easy as you would wish.

What is the wall?
Is it a single wythe veneer?
A multi-wythe brick wall?
A single brick with some sort of masonry backup?

You will require the services of a structural engineer in any event, and if it is doable at all, he will tell you how.
Old 10-29-06, 03:13 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 2
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Thanks for your responses

GregH: This is located in south Chicago and this garage dates back to 40's or 50's.I was thinking along the same lines with large steel h beams sunk in a hole vertical like a post bolted through the wall and concreted in.

Conretemasonry: I think the wall is both brick veneer and block inside. I will find out. Probable 4''brick and 8'' block, but will verify
I will assume since we are in Chicago the footer depth is 3ft plus for frost. It looks like the top portion of the footer is exposed both in and out. I say this because there is a cap that sticks up 6 inches on the inside, so I assume they poured the floor to the footer rather than on top.

Tscarborough: i will get the details of the wall this week when in Chicago.

This is in a scrap metal yard so the H beams can be easily found. We are installing a new perimeter fence so I thought we could drill post holes next to the wall and then basically over design the support system, say 8-10'' beams every 12 ft or so. It would be a shame to knock it down as it faces an old church and in a tough area

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title: