Monday, March 24, 2008

That Sinking Feeling

I haven't done a post in a while, we've been doing some work on the house though. I've been building a wall in the basement stairwell, to support that side of the living room, that is sagging. I removed the 4x4 post that was at the end of a 6x8 beam (there's a 6x6 post 3' away from it). I built a footing, and replaced the 4x4 with a 6x6. The footing sunk about an inch, when I was jacking up the beam. I guess the footing was too small, and soil not compacted enough. The soil they used to backfill under our slab isn't very good, I don't think it was compacted, and it isn't gravel. I did use gravel when I did the new footing. Anyways, I built a 2x6" wall from the new post, along the stairwell. Well, the floor didn't fare very well, our basement slab is only about 2" thick, and it sunk about 2 or 3" under the wall. I was going to leave it, and just use self levelling compound against the wall. I couldn't do it though, it was just too half ass. So I broke out the part of the slab that was broken, I had to take out half the studs, and dug down about 12". I poured a new floor under the bottom plate of the wall, and where the door way is. It's about a 3'x5' oval piece. I tried mixing it in this large bucket I have, but it was so difficult mixing the concrete in that. So I pulled the wheelbarrow in to the basement, and mixed 9 bags by hand. I used the higher strength concrete again, so it should be good in about 2 weeks. The footing didn't crack at least, it just sunk, I compacted with about 6" of gravel this time, so hopefully it won't sink. We want to jack up the floor for this living room about another 1/4". The plaster is already cracking a lot, and the door to upstairs doesn't close now. We're going to plane the door, once the jacking it done. The door to the stairs has the opposite problem, so we'll have to more the latch down. It's not an option to jack the other side of the stairwell up, since there's a finished room in the basement on that side. Not really anything photo worthy, it's sure been a struggle though.


John said...

You have my deepest sympathy. I've had to spend a lot of time over the years jacking up every house I've owned in some fashion, it's always an ordeal. I wish you the best of luck. Hopefully, the worst is behind you.

Derek said...

I think we'd need a professional to come in and do it for it to be perfect. Then we'd probably want to replace the foundation, and dig a little deeper, big bucks. It's better than it used to be, when the whole back of the house was basically floating.