Earthquake Foundation Damage

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Old 09-04-11, 11:53 AM
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Earthquake Foundation Damage

Little cabin in Virginia sustained damage to foundation. I'm out of state and haven't seen it but told blocks mis-aligned. House holding well so far with slight tilt. What is the easiest way to go about repairing block walls. My husband and I with the help of our carpenter friend built this ourselves over 20 years ago. Too old now to do the work but wondering if jack posts would be first step in crawl space of about 3' height. Since damage was widespread with Irene on its heels, tradesmen available are few to none. Will appreciate any input.
 
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Old 09-05-11, 03:51 PM
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The "tilt" that you mentioned is the first thing that has to be corrected. I would look for a way to build a header in the crawl space so the joists can be lifted. Then the blocks can be replaced. If it can't be done from the inside, then I would try to run one or more steel beams from the one side of the cabin to the other, through the foundation & lift it from the outside. You may need a house moving company to do that.

If you can get someone to take some pics, post them here.
 
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Old 09-05-11, 06:48 PM
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Thanks so much for your suggestions. I will see if I can get pictures taken. One friend suggested the house moving but right now, it's almost impossible to get anyone to do what is considered a small job. While the problems down there are not newsworthy except to local folks, two schools sustained major damage and have been closed, and other local government buildings took a hit as well as hundreds of homes and many businesses. Then add the damage Irene did along the east coast and there are just not enough tradesmen to go around. I will look into the feasibility of building a header. Again, thanks. I had not thought of building a header.
 
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Old 09-06-11, 10:27 AM
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Went through this in 1994 after the Northridge earthquake. Foundation cracked, block walls came down, and mobile home was dislocated from its jacks. People came in to the area (Los Angeles) from hundreds of miles away, capitalizing on the damage by charging outrageous prices. Most were unqualified to do much of anything except sweep the debris and a lot of those weren't qualified to do even that. I can sympathize with you. Be careful whom you select to do the work.
 
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