Is this a diy foundation repair job?

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Old 07-10-14, 08:56 PM
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Is this a diy foundation repair job?

Hi all. I'm in a (poor) part of Orange County, California. My house was built in the 1960's. We opened up a wall to change out a couple of windows and found some structural issues.

The footing which runs from the garage to the back of the house is cracked fairly severely. It is in the footing right at a T intersection of the back wall of the garage (gable end), side of the garage and beginning of the house. It is cracked clear through to the outside wall.

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I can't afford to hire a foundation repair company or a structural engineer (minimum $500 for a site visit), nor a contractor to put it all together again.

The crack is most likely from a lack of proper drainage from the side of the house. There are 1/2" cracks in the garage slab with the front of the garage sinking about 3/4". The sill plate running perpendicular to the cracked foundation is overhanging the concrete edge by almost 1". The builder laid the sill plate right along a snapped red chalk line, so the sill plate was built too close to the edge of the slab. The anchor is actually partially exposed. The top of the perpendicular wall is canted in about 3/4", having pulled away from the top plate of the bedroom outside wall.

I did not expect to find this problem, but since I have, this is what I plan to do.

Epoxy #5 rebar into the footing at a right angle to each other both on the inside and outside at 18" depth and 12" depth. Aditionally I will insert #5 rebar from one side of the crack to the other. I will tie the rebar together and pour a new footing 2' x 2' on the inside of the crack and the outside.
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To fill the actual gap, and encase the new rebar, would normal concrete be okay? Is there an epoxy filler for a 3" gap? Am I off my rocker?



Thanks!
 
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Old 07-10-14, 11:30 PM
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A "poor part" of Orange County? Does such really exist? But no, I definitely don't think you are off your rocker. In fact, quite the contrary.

But to answer your question, I think what you're planning to do definitely has merit, and should slow down (if not eliminate completely) the foundation movement you're experiencing. It's possible the crack completely through was at least partially caused by lack of adequate rebar at the junction of the two walls/footings.

For your situation, I'd tie the L-shaped bars together with a few vertical No. 4s, to prevent horizontal cracking when things are subject to settling forces. I'd also use at least 3 sets of horizontal bars instead of just 2 over the full height, such that they're spaced no more than 9" apart. Make sure to blow all of the drilling dust out of the holes before loading them with epoxy. Each set of bars can be lapped (and tightly tie-wired) together before the epoxy has set up. I'd use a brand-name pre-bagged concrete mix, sweetened with pure Portland cement. A neat Portland cement bonding slurry will help in gluing new concrete to old. Make sure to first clean and remove dirt/debris from bonding surfaces, too, before setting forms.

And before doing anything, don't forget to correct the faulty drainage situation that was causing or contributing to the problem in the first place.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 07:03 PM
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Thank you. Got the job done. My little harbor frieght concrete mixer and hammer drill came through like champs.

We're taking care of the drainage issue, and will be done by the rainy season. The prior owner had termites and replaced a lot of fascia and rafter tails, but never replaced the gutters he ripped out. Some more drain pipe and apron work to go!

Again thank you for your contributions. I can't tell you how much I've learned from reading your posts.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 09:02 PM
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I'm glad you found my information helpful. In my next life, I want to be a teacher, as I derive a lot of satisfaction in sharing with others what I've learned over the years.

After all, it doesn't make any sense to take it to my grave with me.
 
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Old 07-12-14, 04:48 AM
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I derive a lot of satisfaction in sharing with others what I've learned over the years.
I think that is why most of us help out here ..... and if you are like me, you've reached the point in your life where it's a lot easier to explain to someone else what needs to be done than do the work yourself
 
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