Cottage on "floating footing"

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Old 09-12-15, 01:18 PM
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Cottage on "floating footing"

Our cottage, build in 1920's, was built on what is referred to as a floating footing. I gather this is a poured 1' by 1' footing embedded halfway into ground with 2 to 4 rows of concrete cinder blocks on it. It seems unusual now but common then and no problems whatsoever despite 80 plus years of freezing winters and hot summers in northern maine. However, I want to extend the back 8 feet and am thinking of doing the same thing. Is anyone familiar with thse cinder block / floating footer foundations....??? How were they done originally?
 
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Old 09-12-15, 01:27 PM
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Very common here in Maine.
IMO, make your extension in the same manner as the existing cottage so all will move together.

Bud
 

Last edited by Bud9051; 09-12-15 at 04:02 PM.
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Old 09-12-15, 01:30 PM
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While I am not familiar with floating footers, I suppose if I was to do it I would do the following. Dig a series of footer holes 36" deep to get below the frost line similar to if you were building a deck. However, instead of wooden beam that would eventually use for a wooden deck, I use a 1'x1' concrete steel reinforced beam that connects all the footer holes. Did that make any sense to anyone but me? Side view is as follows: visible concrete beam, not visible connected to the beam is are 12" concrete columns that goes down 36" every 5 feet.
 
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Old 09-12-15, 03:21 PM
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The cottage has done well with cinder block piers essentially sitting on this floating one foot footer. The space between the piers has been filled in with cinder blocks essentially to keep animals and snow out. Under the cabin floor is dirt about 16 incges down.. Is there any advantage to installing a 6ml vapor barrier over the dirt and try to seal it to sides, or is it best to leave it open as this is a non winterized.
 
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Old 09-12-15, 04:01 PM
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Have you been under there to see if there is a problem, like signs of mold or mildew? If not, then the need to add a vapor barrier is minimal. How many years has that space been enclosed with the extra cinder blocks?

I would also recommend you enclose the new space in the same way. Being enclosed would slow the frost and you want old and new areas to rise and fall together.

Bud
 
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Old 09-13-15, 07:06 AM
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The crawl space has been enclosed with the extra cinder blocks for over 10 years. I am going under with a bright light this week to inspect everything. I don't plan to use it year round, but was considering putting some insultation in floor joists to help with fall/spring heating, and vapor barrier. The walls and ceiling have insulation batts but no vapor barrier. However, part of me thinks I should leave well enough alone as current structure has stood the test of time.
 
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