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Old 08-31-2016, 08:55 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,661 times
Reputation: 10

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I'm looking for some help on replacing the sill plate on the front (east side) of a 2 story house. The existing sill place is rotting which has caused settling cracks, doors sticking, etc. The rot is being caused by water from the uncovered elevated concrete front porch that was poured against the house, then settled causing water to pond against the house.

The basement floor is concrete and it's approximately 7 feet from the floor to the bottom of the floor joists. The floor joists are 2x8's that are approx 16 inch on center. Just to be clear the joists are perpendicular to the sill plate. The sill plate itself is only a single board that I believe is a 2x6? The header plate for the end of the joists is approx 4 inches from the basement side of the sill plate. The basement is constructed of concrete block.
To raise the joists I'm considering constructing two 12 foot beams by constructing each beam from 3 2x6's that are nailed together with a 4th 2x6 as a plate for the other 3. I would place this beam against the floor joists and use 2 lally columns spaced 3 feet from each end and 6 feet from each other. To do the actual lifting I will use a bottle jack with a 4x4 post and then tighten the Lally columns- or should I configure a jack under each Lally column?


On the south side of the house the foundation wall was doubled due to a previous foundation issue (before we owned the house). To place the beam under that joist I would have to place the beam 4 feet from the wall- is that too far? To place the support closer I would have To use a single 2x6 that could be placed above the "extra" foundation wall.

I think the easiest way to access the sill would be by removing the concrete next to the house. Cut the concrete with a saw, then jack hammering out the section from the cut to the house. I'm speculating that the "cap"is only a few inches thick. I think when the porch was constructed that they built the foundation for the porch out of concrete block, filled I Inside with some dirt and then poured the surface "cap"of the porch.

I'd like to raise the house incrementally over a few weeks. Should I cut the concrete and open up the porch before starting to raise the joists? Thanks for any assistance.
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Old 09-01-2016, 07:50 AM
 
28,430 posts, read 70,768,727 times
Reputation: 18363
The work you are proposing carries FAR TOO MUCH RISK not to involve professionals! The situation you are describing NEEDS to be reviewed by a qualified engineer. Even if the previous repairs to the foundation were signed off by someone that understood the initial problems the fact that 22' of sill plate is rotten away and you need to repair that means a NEW solution needs to be designed.

While it probably does make sense to try to remove the concrete porch to access the foundation there is a HUGE RISK that the porch is already forced against the rest of the home and any effort to modify this area could result in catastrophic collapse of the entire house. I have seen such situations and it literally can result in something going from a "porch repair" to a the whole house being a pile of rubble in just a few minutes.

Depending on the size of the house you may be grossly under-estimating the forces you are dealing with -- if the house is large the only way to effectively make the needed repairs may to hire a firm experienced in using the sorts of equipment that "house movers" have access to -- they do not use 4x4s and bottle jacks but GIANT steel girders and an array of automated hydraulics to precisely take the loads off the failed sill and allow proper repairs.

This is NOT a DIY project!
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:01 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
12,499 posts, read 48,525,774 times
Reputation: 14060
"Moving" a two story with 2X6's and a bottle jack? Surely you jest?

Now would be a good time to find a hobby that doesn't include carpentry skills!

Seriously, you need to contact a GC that either has a PE on staff or has a good one on call. I've seen this achieved in a couple of different ways- but by your description this sounds like a full-on lift. That's steel I-beams, cribbing, and power-assisted hydraulic jacks, making a uniform lift (worse case scenario).
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Old 09-04-2016, 07:44 PM
 
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I appreciate your replies and I fully grasp what you are saying. At this point I will say that I've put the house lift on hold - although I did upgrade my 12' beams to 3- 2x10's and 2- 2x6's. Right now the first step is to demo the poured concrete porch to determine what we are dealing with. After removing the threshold of the front door it looks like the house was constructed using balloon framing. I don't have thousands of dollars to spare and I think I can get better quotes on the job as well as finding someone qualified to do the work if I have eliminated as many "unknowns" as possible. Sure, I'd love to hire someone but I also don't care to later realize the company claiming they are qualified really don't know what they're doing. I work with many PE's and while many are excellent I'm also wise enough to know that sometimes those with the initials behind their name don't seem to realize what they don't know.

So...again, I appreciate the concern and its duly noted. Any tips for jackhammering the concrete are appreciated. I've cut into the concrete with a saw and hit it with a sledge and have quickly decided that a jackhammer is the way to go.

If anyone has any recommended questions to ask prospective contractors (when I get to that stage), I'd welcome that too. Thanks!
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Old 09-04-2016, 07:46 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,661 times
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I forgot to mention that one thing going in our favor is that this house was built in 1941 and already has cribbing between the floor joists. One of the "extras" not included in houses built today
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Old 09-04-2016, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
12,499 posts, read 48,525,774 times
Reputation: 14060
Quote:
Originally Posted by SA41 View Post
I forgot to mention that one thing going in our favor is that this house was built in 1941 and already has cribbing between the floor joists. One of the "extras" not included in houses built today
I have no idea what you think is cribbing- but "between the joists" ain't it. Cribbing has the ability to actually support a house-
Attached Thumbnails
22 foot sill replacement for 1941 house Ohio-image.jpeg  
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Old 09-06-2016, 09:02 AM
 
28,430 posts, read 70,768,727 times
Reputation: 18363
I'd guess the OP is confusing bridging / cross-bracing with cribbing -- How to Stiffen a Floor with Bridging | The Family Handyman



Further evidence that they do not have the knowledge to deal with the situation that they are facing...

Read up to learn the correct terms -- Replacing a Rotten Mudsill

(probably need to subscribe / open account for full access...)
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