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.
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.
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
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..
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.
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
But I must admit I thought solid pour was infallable..
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.
Here's a link to that crack gauge I mentioned:
Here's some links to sources of information:
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
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