I'm replacing foundation plates and rim joists on the house. The dry rot is
so bad that I can use my bench brush to sweep out the lumber.
I need to replace about 40 lineal feet. I'm jacking up the house (about an
inch) from the outside (siding already removed), pulling out the rotten
material and replacing it with pressure treated 2x6 lumber. I cannot
install foundation bolts on the plates, nor were there any in the first
Seems like my only choice would be to get some earthquake straps, drill and
bolt the straps vertically to connect the foundation and one of the studs.
Repeat every 4 feet.
BTW, this is not high earthquake country.
Anybody have a better idea.
Of course I cannot drill vertical holes in the old foundation. 3" of
clearance is not enough for an angle drill or a 8" bolt. As I have
suggested, I can, on the outside, drill horizontal bolts into the foundation
and using a strong-tie bolt to the stud above. Repeat every 4 feet.
That'll work, but my first thought was L-shaped plates on the inside,
epoxy-lagged into the block or poured wall, capturing the new sill plates,
with maybe a lag screw into the sill plate if the L-plate is wide enough.
With plates in opposing directions on either side of house, that should keep
it from doing a Dorothy in a windstorm, which is what the bolts are for,
unless you live in earthquake country.
On the first page of the google results it gives this:
Down near the bottom of that page is a section called "Bolting Homes
With Low-Clearance". Might be useful to you.
Having the house bolted to the foundation is not just for earthquakes,
but also for any high-wind situation -- does your area have
hurricanes, tornadoes, or severe thunderstorms? I have seen slides of
a house shifted off its foundation by winds of no more than 65 mph.
For that matter, it might help in other situations too, like if a car
hits the house. I would favor bolts epoxied in. You might be able to
rent an angle drill to drill downwards through the sill plate into the
foundation to install them.
Chuckle. Seen (or not seen?) that a lot myself. If the framing crew gets
ahead of the kid assigned shit duties like that, and the floor gets decked
over before anyone notices, it tends to fall through the cracks. And if the
J-bolts are rusty, crusted with concrete, or at a bad angle, or too short,
and the kid isn't a go-getter....
(My old man was the GC or strawboss, so I pulled a lot of punch list duty as
a kid. Putting those washers and nuts on from below, and getting a socket
wrench on them, was often a lot of fun, especially in crawlspaces.)
I have seen a lot of houses built on cement block foundations without
anything securing the sill plates to the blocks. It does not seem to be a
problem and I am not sure that the blocks would help much in an uplift
anyhow. Houses have been built for centuries just sitting on rock piles or
However, I agree that having it bolted down strongly is a good idea. I am
not sure that just bolting the sill plates makes it a strong connection
between the ground and the rest of the house. It would depend a lot on the
type of foundation wall and on the strength of the framing connections.
Not disagreeing- but back in the old days in the midwest, hurricane
straps/earthquake straps would have rated a 'Huh?' As a kid, a pack of
tornadoes came through a Real Cheap cookie cutter subdivision my father was
strawboss on (after his own high-end custom home company went belly up, it
was the only work he could get, much to his embarrasment.) I worked one
spring vaction on the cleanup of that subdivision, which was luckily mostly
still vacant. Several of the houses were sucked up off the foundations, and
the sill plates did stay attached to the joists. The J-bolts were still
sticking out of the concrete block, no nuts to be seen. If The J-bolt is in
a filled block cavity, and if the block foundation has the proper tie metal
every third course, and a rebar in filled holes every X feet, it is pretty
solid. A monolithic pour reinforced foundation would be much stronger,
If I ever had the money to build a house, yes I would strap foundation to
floor system, floor to studs, walls to rafters, etc. Pretty much what the
California,Florida, and similar region codes require. May only need it once
every hundred years when Mother Nature gets cranky, but it is so cheap and
easy to add during construction, it is real cheap insurance. Retrofit, of
course, is a much more expensive PITA.
I take it from this that the floor system bears directly on the mud
sills, and that is why you have can not install retrofit bolts from
above? If so, then as another poster suggested, take a look at the
Simpson products on this page:
In particular, consider using the FAP product if the edge of the
mudsill lines up exactly with the end of the foundation, or the UFP
product if it does not. Note that typically these would be used on
the inside edge of the foundation, not the outside edge. Be sure to
use corrosion resistant fasteners and hardware (hdg or stainless) for
anything contacting treated wood or concrete.
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