5/32 crack in foundation wall

Old 11-15-09, 11:34 AM
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5/32 crack in foundation wall

My house was built four years ago and purchased three years ago. I'm still trying to track down what, if any, warranty information can apply to this. This crack is below the very top layer of the block in the wall that is backfilled for the garage. The crack is a few feet long, going from the part here to an inside corner wall where it terminates.

I found a picture I took of this crack, with the same ruler, exactly two years ago and it was 3/32 wide, so it has grown.

I also in the basement have a 4/32 crack at a top brick just above a window where the 4' long block was run as the top of the window. Additionally two more hairline vertical cracks from floor to ceiling (running straight through the blocks and mortar joints), one of which is on the same wall as this crack, and a 1/16" crack also floor to ceiling (other side of the garage back-filled wall). The others I only recently found when I pulled insulation and the 1/16" I think has moved little, if at all, from when I first found it.

I am thinking of having a structural engineer coming in to see what's going on, do you think that's reasonable before finishing this? Soil is clay-like. This past summer I finally got around to burying drains, so am getting little moisture build up in the walls.
Old 11-16-09, 02:20 PM
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If it will set your mind at ease, let an engineer look at it. It will probably cost about $200 but if you don't mind paying, do it.
Old 11-27-09, 12:18 PM
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Can you do this first of all? Is the area unfinished? If so and assuming the blocks were laid with good workmanship there are a few things you can do to start the ball rolling and sort this out. Get a couple of helpers and two or three short 2X4 blocks of wood and some mason's line.Have your helpers hold the line very tight along the top horizontal joint spacing the tight line away from the ends of the wall using the wood blocks. Now let's measure the distance from this block row in the middle of the wall, string line to block wall. It should also measure 1 1/2" from the mason's line to block wall all along this line. If it does not but measures any less than an 1 1/2" you obviously have a block wall pushing in. If you do not already have one invest in a dollar and a half line level. Are the corner blocks level? Is there settling in the middle?

Check the wall for plumb at middle using a plumb bob this time and use your blocks of wood to space the plumb from top block. Check for any deviation at bottom (line to wall) Is the wall basically plumb or is it heaving in at the middle.

You mention the garage is attached here. Did the mason or concrete footing man pour garage footers upon fresh fill after excavators backfilled basement excavation with or did they provide for a pier here coming up from the original undisturbed bottom of basement excavation to rest footing for garage on? How about the garage floor? Any cracking here?

Tell us more so we can help you.


Last edited by bullshooter5; 11-27-09 at 12:51 PM.

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