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Cracks surrounding large window - Newer Modular Home


huff.jeremy's Avatar
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11-15-14, 11:46 AM   #1  
Cracks surrounding large window - Newer Modular Home

Hello,

I have owned this home for two years and it is only seven years old. It is a modular home set upon a poured concrete/walkout basement. I had no experience with modular homes, but was very impressed with the build quality. All walls are framed with 2x6 lumber and everything in the home seemed very solid.

In the master bedroom there is a large window (three standard windows side-by-side in the same frame). There is a large vertical crack developing which is centered directly under the middle window. It seems that the drywall is physically bowing out at this point. I noticed also that there are single hairline cracks at the upper corners of the window as well, spreading diagonally away from the corners.

I am pretty handy, but do not know where to start with this problem. Does anyone have any idea what the cause might be?

 
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11-15-14, 12:51 PM   #2  
Is there any evidence of moisture damage? what does the exterior side of the wall look like? Have you set a level on the sides and top of the window to see if it's still set correctly?


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11-15-14, 03:06 PM   #3  
Got a picture?
That's a weak area in any home and common to see issues after the house settles.
See what happens when you push in on that area to see if it moves.
May just get lucky and be able to just add some screws and pull it back in place.
Those cracks can be gone over with some paper tap and G/P drywall compound.

 
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11-15-14, 04:43 PM   #4  
Thank you for the responses.

There is no sign of previous moisture in the drywall, wood, or carpeting nearby. The foundation, joists, and flooring below the window show no signs of moisture or movement either. (Pictured below). I do hope it is just normal settling, but the 1/8" gap where the baseboard joint was pushed apart makes me wonder if this can actually be considered "normal".


Here is a picture of the biggest crack:



Here is the hairline crack at top corner.



Here is a photo of this area from the basement. Im glad I didn't find a crack or bowed wall here...

 
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11-16-14, 03:50 AM   #5  
That looks like a typical settlement crack. I'd repair the drywall and keep an eye on it and only be concerned if the damage returns. A little bit of caulk will take care of the baseboard joint.


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11-16-14, 05:11 AM   #6  
I'm curious as to what we are looking at in the basement, that doesn't look like a concrete wall. Is that a modular type wall or something covering it. Sorry for being stupid, but at least I'm not afraid to ask .

Since the movement is centered on those windows, the header above is a concern. Did they install one long header over 3 windows or individual headers over each one. Could you take a picture of those windows from inside, all three in one shot. Also, maybe a picture from outside.

Test your skill with a lever and note what you find for now and future reference as you will be watching this to see if it moves some more.

Bud

 
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11-16-14, 05:58 AM   #7  
I thought it was brick/block but a closer look does reveal what looks like panel joints every 4' BUT the way the floor is framed you'd think that foundation wall is load bearing, not just an underpin.


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11-16-14, 10:29 AM   #8  
Thank you for the replies. I do hope that this is normal, as mentioned, but the bulging of the baseboard makes me fear that something structural has given-way. What else would push out with enough force to create that bulge?


I will get some pictures of the entire window by this evening. Being a modular, I wonder how open the manufacturer would be to providing information (whether this is a common problem or whether they could provide drawings of how it is constructed).

Yes, the concrete has that "brick" pattern moulded into it on both the interior and exterior surfaces. I am not a fan of it, it looks to me that the rough surface will make future finishing and insulating more complex.

 
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11-16-14, 12:08 PM   #9  
I would definitely talk to the mfg. They will have the drawings, but may not share. But may still be able to describe how that was placed on the foundation.

A level attached to a straight 8' 2x4 and held up against the bottom of those floor loists will tell you if they slope to the area of that crack. Who knows, foundations are never perfect and maybe this one had a low spot that the house is now settling to.

Bud

 
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