new foundation question

I am not involved with this. It happened / is happening next door in a home over 650k.
Around December it was about 10 degrees. Bulldozers were in, forms installed and concrete foundation was poured. Less than 24 hours - I think it was like 16 hours the forms were removed. We saw the humidity / steam from 75 feet away - it was below freezing. Other neighbor thinks that he heard a popping noise for a couple of days afterwards - could that have been the foundation cracking??? What is the correct length of time for forms to be left in place in the northeast in winter - I thought it was like 3 days?
Next around 3 months later the garage floor for 2 cars was poured against existing foundation. Its maybe 8 feet above cellar floor.
The house foundation floor is above the water table. However there is water coming through into the cellar where the floor meets the walls almost everywhere. The grading is sloped away from house, there is maybe 6 inches of earth, and then its all sand. No one in neighborhood has sump pumps and these houses are higher than half the other neighbors houses.
Today I met new potential buyers who were allowed to bring things in before the closing. They asked me about the hardwood floors which I could see starting to cup. I install hardwood and I noticed it within 10 seconds. The floors are maybe 3 months old. We got humidity meter out and checked it in our house where it registered 6 percent. In this new house cellar the floor joists in first floor measured in the cellar were over 16 percent (off our scale).
Question 1: is it possible to seal a foundation?
Question 2: potential new homeowner doesn't want the drain with pump in cellar floor. They want a french drain. What are the odds of this working?
Question 3: had anyone ever had a new foundation done by lifting the house? And what is a wild guess for the cost to pick up a 3100 sq foot house on 2 levels? Myself if I bought it I would hold back that amount at closing and if the builder couldn't make it dry for a year than I would want that done. There is no way that the cellar could ever be finished with the water and humidity which is a shame because it has ceilings maybe 9 feet high.
TIA.
Oh ya - there is yet another house next door and we looked in that cellar. Its wet. And its not sold.
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oreo123 wrote:

Demolish and start all over again. Pouring foundation in dead winter is OK but looks like that house was built really shoddy from bottom up. Bad news for years to come. I live in Alberta. Looks like you have way more crooked builders down there. Up here every new house comes with warranty footed by industry. There was an instances whole house had to be rebuilt because of poor workmanship. They do basic thing right at least. And they police themselves. Tony
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Are we talking 10 degrees farenheit or celsius when the concrete was poured? Concrete will cure ok down to temps just above freezing, though the curing times increase quite a bit. Below that, it will not cure properly. There are forms available which are insulated and additives that will make it cure faster, etc. The concrete generates heat itself, so if the correct procedures are used to keep it insulated, pours can be done well below zero. Has anyone talked to the building inspector? He should have done an inspection, was he aware of the conditions it was poured in and procedures used?
As for the french drain, it sounds like the house should already have these. There should be a drain tile system along the foundation, leading to a sump pump hole, which is there to then pump the water out. Just having these doesnt guarantee a dry basement, but it is a big help.
It's not uncommon for new homes under construction to have some water on the basement floor as they are being built. Typically, the site has unsettled soil, improper grading, etc at that stage. Once everything is finished, that's when I would become concerned with any water.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net (Chet Hayes) wrote in message

Meant to say that if correct procedures are followed, pours can be done to well below freezing.
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16% in all wood , or different in areas , wood take a Long time to dry when wet, new and green. House is not heated or dehumidified. I have a good Delmhorst Moisture meter, it took a frame sill 1 yr to dry after being soaked. It measured maybe 15% after the leak was fixed 6 months later. Today years later it is 0% 1%, a humid basement. Jack a house you are kidding , you dont even know its bad. Its not even your house.
French drain probably necessary . French drains usualy use pumps.
Its their house , they can see the floor and leaks , it passed inspection Right. So you are going to new home owners scaring the shit out of them and being a nosy body telling people their new floors are bad , that Somebody may have heard their foundation Crack in the Real cold winter , when you suspect they did it wrong anyway. and their foundation may fail their house is on a lake and full of extremely high wood moisture. Its a good thing you werent allowed in the house while it was being built, you would condem the whole place Did you ever stop to think it aint your business, it may be normal, and you are an intrusive , disruptive pest ruining peoples privacy and new home and scaring the shit out of them. What you hate the builder ? this is your revenge. You should worry about your life and house not people that you dont know or didnt ask for your two cents worth of doughtfull fears.
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I met the new - well potentially new - neighbors yesterday. They asked if we had water in our cellar and I said never. They asked me to look at theirs. I have installed lots of hardwood flooring and when walking towards the cellar I saw the cupping of 2 month old hardwood already. And 2 steps downstairs into basement a musty odor. There is standing water on 75 percent of entire foundation where it meets the floor. And one spot in the middle of the foundation. Last shower here was about 5 days ago.
What seems to have happened here is the foundation was poured, the forms were removed around 16 hours later, and there was never any attempt to keep it at 50 degrees. It was below freezing those nights. For the next 10 days it never got over 50 degrees and every night it was below freezing. I have nothing against the builder at all. He subbed it out and he should have been watching his project. I just feel bad when someone gets ripped off by shoddy construction. And in this case the new people want to finish the cellar off into a playroom - not a damp sauna.
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Ive yet to see a concrete co pour when its to cold for their mix. Additives are used for freezing. Records are kept by them temp and additives known so as to not have future liability. Considering jacking up the house and A new foundation is a little crazy and unsubstantiating fear. If floor is wet its wet builder should fix before selling , buyer should not buy before fixing. The house uheated or dehumidified will not have normal humidity in wood. Things wet may not dry. My sill took so long to dry I was sure it was still leaking. maybe a year in a heated dehumidified basement.
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (m Ransley) wrote in message

Also kind of curious that the original post claimed it was 10 degrees when the concrete was poured. Now, in another post, it's stated it was never over 50 and got below freezing at night. Quite a difference and a long way from 10 degrees. I'm also assuming the original 10 was faranheit, since 50 sure can't be celsius.
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Sorry all about not fully explaining everything.
I was talking ferinheit and not c. I pulled weather records and it was below freezing every night after pour. And the forms were yanked around 16 hours later. There was no heat applied, no blankets, nothing. The second or third night it was around 15 or 20 F.
I wonder this - if a foundation has cracks can it really be fixed? Its not my house - its next door. When I cruised though the cellar yesterday it was really humid.

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Does it have cracks? Have you actualy seen any? Yes they can be fixed . A neighbor hearing popping isnt relavent as is you mentioning jacking the house and putting a new foundation. Conctete companys are very carefull in winter especialy, their liability is very great and they use additives when necessary . And stop work when weather makes it unsafe for product performance. Leaks are a separate issue that need to be fixed , but a closed -sealed new unventilated house can have extremely high humidity as with tight construction and no air circulating causing alot of issues even mold and floor cupping. Talk to your concrete co for pour parameters and your top building inspector. Or hire an indepandant engineer.
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oreo123 wrote:

Tell the new homeowners they should have a home inspector out to take a look now, well really before they signed anything. They really should get the inspector out before they take possession.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
  Click to see the full signature.
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Now that's good, neighborly advice!
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