Settling & Floor Dipping


Old 03-12-15, 11:34 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2015
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Settling & Floor Dipping

Hi All,

I need some advice. So I just bought a townhome that was built in 1996. I noticed a slight dip in the townhome but never really thought too much of it before. Now it's driving me crazy . My home inspector said that it was just a settling issue since it's happening near a load bearing wall and that if I really wanted to I can jack the floor back up to the original position. The only thing that is kind of weird is that I noticed the crown molding (picture 2) was cut like the dip has been there since the home was built. The crown molding on the right side of the door where the dip is, is longer than the crown molding on the left side and the top of the door is level. I have a strong feeling that this is the original laminate flooring and the original crown molding (I've seen neighboring homes with the exact same floors and molding in the home is consistent). The small dip underneath the molding does suggest it has settled a bit though if my theory is correct.

Anyways, I had a crawlspace specialist come out and he wants to replace all the middle columns supporting my main beam and install 4 new smartjack systems for $4k and level the floors since he says there's a small gap where some columns have sunk down but that it's no big rush. The home is 20 years old and I doubt it has much more settling to be done (amateur here, so I may be wrong), so I was wondering if anyone can provide some advice as to whether I should do this before I get new flooring OR just level out the floors above when I install new laminate (dip is about maybe 1/2 inch at most over a 5 ft span)? I don't want to put a band-aid fix over this but nor do I want to spend $8k to do both if this isn't as big of an issue as I'm making it.

1st Picture: 4 X's mark where columns are right now and oval is where dip is.
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Last edited by Leticia Maltos; 03-12-15 at 11:56 AM.
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Old 03-12-15, 03:33 PM
czizzi's Avatar
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Sorry, don't see any crown molding in any pictures. I do however, see a door that was installed such that the door operated correctly despite the house being crooked. My guess is that it was like this from day one. Otherwise, that door would be all out of kilter and not work at all.

Have you considered jacking up and adding composite shims under the main support beam on the existing piers? Should be a heck of a lot more affordable than pouring new footers and installing new supports.

I've seen new construction where the foundation was off slightly. It doesn't show up until you start framing. Then the fun begins. If yours was just a general sag in the middle of a great room than it would not really have a bearing on the structural integrity of the house.
Old 03-12-15, 03:35 PM
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Yeah I'd definitely get the dip fixed first because its entirely possible that if you replace the floor first that your floor guys might want to fill the dip with floor patch before they install the new floor.

Then if you jack it up later you will have a hump instead of a dip.

The gap doesn't sound good... probably have to bite the bullet. I don't see any crown moulding pics either.

Edit: just a thought but if you shim (which is a great affordable idea, Czizzi) I wouldn't recommend composite shims that might crush, anything that's load bearing above a column I would use stacks of steel shims.
Old 03-12-15, 04:24 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2015
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So sorry - I mean the door frame... not crown molding! Basically the molding near the floors and around the door (?) newbie here. When I bought the new place it did seem like they put in a new door there (this was the only door with blue tape around it and molding taken off from the back.
Old 03-12-15, 04:44 PM
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Sorry - I meant the floor molding and around the door frame. They replaced that door before I purchased the home (still had the blue tape around it and everything). I was always wondering why... Maybe this was the issue.. would the framing still be pretty messed up though on the new door?

Shimming is definitely an option. I've been leaning towards doing that and getting a few helpers but not too sure how hard of a job it is.
Old 03-25-15, 11:39 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2014
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i'm no contractor but i'd think a foundation guy could get under there and jack it up enough to put some steel shims under the low spots easily... unless it's a really small crawlspace.

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