Horizontal crack all the way round the house

Martin Wiseman wrote:

It's could be that there is expanded metal covering gaps, or used as a "key" to get the render to stay on. The lintels are quite likely to be concrete. Can you supply a picture of the outside of the house, taking in the brickwork above and around the window? Your best option is likely to be to hack off some of the render around the crack - don't go at it like a maniac, else you may take off more than you want. Paint the surface where you removed some render with PVA 1:5 PVA:water, apply new sand/cement, plaster, or even pollyfiller mixed with sand. Leave slightly below the finished level. If there is expanded metal, make sure that you press your filler well into/through it. When it's dry, a day or two, finish with polyfiller.
What tends to happen is that if there is any movement, sand trickles down behind loose render, and the gradual wedging effect makes the cracks worse, and pushes the render/plaster outwards as well.

Fill the cracks around the lintels, or, better, patch the render.
Now, the crack around the wall is perplexing (as is the colour scheme!). Is the ceiling to wall joint OK? Have any works been done to this house? Has it been re-roofed? I notice in your picture there's a step in height for the crack as it approaches the corner. Can you supply any more photos. of this crack, and the corresponding outside?
J.B.
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Martin Wiseman wrote:

If you have any kind of underpinning done or make a subsidence claim, then insurance will only be offered by a select few insurers, and will be expensive.
Once a house has this kind of claim on it, it is blighted :(
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Martin Wiseman wrote:

Hm. This shows that the windows have been replaced, which might (or might not) have a bearing on the cracking around the windows on the inside. When you remove some of the render around the big crack, you will be able to see what the situation is re. lintels.

It's odd, that - I'd expect the board to be higher up the wall. There seems to be a row of "soldiers" above the window, partially covered up...

Do report back, won't you!
J.B.
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=================The circular mark (4 brick courses down / 1 brick from window) suggests that the house has had either cavity wall insulation injected or possibly some wall ties replaced. If either of these has been done then it might explain some or all of the cracks. You would need to inspect the mark I've indicated to see exactly what it is and to see if there are similar marks elswhere on the house. It might just be a blemish from the local yob's ball-bearing gun!
Cic.
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Hi,

Almost certainly the cavity wall insulation, however this was done in the last 18 months and the cracks were there long before it.
The wall ties are almost certainly original, they have not been replaced in the last 25 years.
Having previously said there were no cracks on the outside, I had a chance to inspect it through binoculars today and there are some cracks. The dark line at the left of the mortar between the two bricks in the top row vertically above the circular mark you referred to is a crack and there is a similar width of crack through a brick at the opposite end of the window.
Martin.
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On Tue, 17 Aug 2004 19:23:54 +0100, a particular chimpanzee named
and produced:

<snip>
Two questions: 1. Are there any other horizontal cracks lower down? 2. Is the roof constructed using a 'traditional' cut roof with purlins and separate ceiling joists, rafters, etc.?
If the first is yes, I'd be thinking about wall tie failure. If the second is yes, it could be that the roof is spreading slightly, pushing out the top few courses of brickwork. It would be more pronounced around a window as this is a natural weak point.
Personally, if the walls aren't out of plumb by more than 15-20mm and show no recent movement, I wouldn't be too worried. I'd rather live with the occasional patching job than involve insurance companies (see my tale of woe http://tinyurl.com/53d3x ).
--
Hugo Nebula
'What you have to ask yourself is, "if no-one on the internet wants
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Hi,
I've now removed some plaster and exposed the bricks. I've started a new thread under the title "Horizontal crack round house - an update" to continue the discussion.
Regards, Martin.
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