Solid Pour Foundation


The vacation home I purchased in Aug. of last year has 2 cracks (not huge in width- but they go through the wall all the way and run almost the entire length) in a vertical foundation wall. They happen to be the wall that faces the upslope of the hill I live on.
There are also some cracks in the garage floor area. I was told I might get 'those'. But I don't believe there should be cracks in a solid pour foundation wall this (very) early on. Should there be? Also what causes this to happen in new construction.?
And I guess If there shouldn't be any cracks , what could the builder do that would remedy the situation to the point of making me whole again. Also, the home comes with a 10 year warranty, so anything MAJOR after Aug. is covered.
But (for now) I'm still under him for claims.
TIA CP
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The only warranty you get with concrete is that it WILL crack. I am the owner of a new solid pour foundation also, and it has more than 2 cracks in it. I'm not worrying about the cracks in my foundation. Just keep an eye on them, measure, take pictures and see if they get bigger. Things will tend to settle and shift a bit that may cause some minor cracking. I would not worry about it unless the cracks open up and get big.
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Good to hear. I will 'play' dumb and let the builer know on my last list I have to submit for the annual run through on gigs.
I've never had a new home till this one. And it's amazing how it becomes a used one even if you're not living in it for 6 months. I just got back in it.
I purchased it Aug. 15 and headed back to work in Fla on Oct 15. Only 2 months of true (near) perfection. My thinking was if I wasn't living in it but half the time it would age half as fast. NOT.
But there is (alot) less wear and tear.
They aren't big cracks. Thanks for the advice I will photograph 'em.. CP
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Keep in mind, there is re-bar in the pour so you will not have a catastrophic failure. I have two cracks in mine. They have not moved in 25 years.
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epoxy some pieces of window glass on either side of crack, if it moves the glass will crack
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The cracks should be filled with injected epoxy, not just coated with new cement.
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Someone mentioned expanding epoxy to me recently. I didn't ask for a brand name or type. Does this sound familiar to anyone?
--
charles

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They drill holes into the concrete, perpendicular to the crack. Next them hammer in plastic feeder tubes into the holes. In the exposed end of the tube they screw in a fitting similar to what you'd find on a ball joint. Finally they mix the epoxy and pump in through the fitting into the tube until is starts coming out of the crack. The epoxy also expands as it sets - at least it did with our foundation.
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They used rebar in this home as they do in all of their homes. The builder has a very good local reputation. And in this development is the biggest builder by far.
Out of curiosity, I checked how the warranty addresses these types of cracks. And it jives with what J A said above. Minor cracks are common in the floor and walls of solid pour construction.
Up to 1/8 inch is ok in solid pour walls. Above that and a claim should be filed. And up to 3/32 in floors with no more than 1/4 inch vertical. As I said, I'll make a half of a big deal out of it before my bumper to bumper is up. But these are no where near that size.
The warranty says if they are above those sizes, they surface repair them unless of course they affect the structural soundness.
I would never retain an attorney or make a big deal out of something like this (especially based on someone's vague post) unless I researched several sources.
But I must admit I thought solid pour was infallable..
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I would not be passive about this. The fact that the builder has a "Foundation cracks" clause in his contract just means that he is covering himself from poor workmanship from his low bid subcontractors. Your original post said that the crack goes through from inside to the outside for the length of the wall. That does not sound normal to me. It sounds as though you now have a two piece foundation wall. You have no idea what that crack will be like in five years and don't count on that 10 year home warranty to give you satisfaction. You'd better read that carefully as they are mostly used as a sales tool and not for customer satisfaction. If I was looking at your house to buy and saw a crack the way you describe I would walk away. Wouldn't you?
Take a walk around the neighborhood and talk to some of your neighbors about cracks in their foundations.
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Here's a link to that crack gauge I mentioned: http://www.humboldtmfg.com/c-2-p-288-id-2.html
Here's some links to sources of information: http://www.inspect-ny.com/structure/foundation.htm
http://www.hgtvpro.com/hpro/bp_foundation/article/0,2617,HPRO_20146_5081991,00.html
http://www.superseal.ca/cf_foundation_cracks.html
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I have spent the better part of my working life in basements of all types. I would not consider any cracking acceptable. Yours sounds extreme to me for a new house. I'm wondering if they put any reinforcing bar inside of the concrete. You could also have soil settling problems. They may have put the footings on filled in dirt. I would address this immediately as you don't know what the long term ramifications will be. Talk to a lawyer, an engineer, and the building inspector. Get lots of pictures. I saw on TV once some engineers putting these little gauges on cracks to monitor for settling or earthquakes (I can't remember). Maybe you can get some of those to monitor the progress of the cracking. You don't want to lose value in your house. I would ask the builder to buy it back.
I remember about 20 something years ago I was working on a four story apartment building in Los Angeles. As the job was drawing to a close another company demolished the building next door and began excavating for a new foundation. Their foundation hole undercut the footings of the building I was on by several feet. The buildings were only about 20 feet apart. A few days later the owner of the building I was on noticed cracks in the underground garage. Both jobs came to a halt until the engineers could figure a way to rectify the problem. I remember one day I stopped by and there were about twenty people from both sides looking at the cracks and the hole. There was a city inspector, lawyers and engineers from both sides, the two architects, the contractors, and who knows what else. Eventually they came up with a solution to dump a lot of concrete between the buildings.
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