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  #1  
Old 05/12/10, 02:08 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western North Carolina
Posts: 3,089
HowTo lay Block under existing house??

Two rooms of our house do not have cement block "foundation" walls....what am I supposed to be calling it? The "skirt wall" that goes around and closes off the crawl space of the house. The crawl space to those two rooms only has plywood over it. Animals get under there and the rooms are too cold. The rest of the house has proper cement block foundation / crawl space / skirt walls.

I want to rip off the plywood and build a cement block wall. I know I have to pour a cement footing.....and I know how to do that.....but How To handle it where I have treated posts for support at the corners?? I want to take those out too but how to take them out and not have the room fall off the house??

Would I build a footing PAD first on both sides of the treated Post, then go on and build the cement block tower thing on each side....then put "shims" or whatever you call the little pieces of wood that would make the cement block tower reach the house wood frame part....Joists I think it is called....the floor Joists.....and then knock out the wood post???

OR would I put those metal Leg temporary things that hold up a house in there.....build the whole footing plus the cement walls and then take out the temporary metal leg things? I think I might could put some sort of Brace under the corners and hold that up with the metal legs....??

My husband would just kill me if I let the rooms fall off the house and down the hill...so I need to figure this out......Thank you!

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  #2  
Old 05/12/10, 02:32 PM
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 143

If I were doing this, I would create a temporary bracing system - temporary beams and some jack posts to support the rooms that will be out of your way when you build the new concrete block wall. Then remove the existing posts. You can then do your footing and concrete block walls properly.

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  #3  
Old 05/12/10, 02:56 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Whiskey Flats(Ft. Worth) , Tx
Posts: 7,752
Quote:
Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
Two rooms of our house do not have cement block "foundation" walls....what am I supposed to be calling it? The "skirt wall" that goes around and closes off the crawl space of the house. The crawl space to those two rooms only has plywood over it. Animals get under there and the rooms are too cold. The rest of the house has proper cement block foundation / crawl space / skirt walls.

I want to rip off the plywood and build a cement block wall. I know I have to pour a cement footing.....and I know how to do that.....but How To handle it where I have treated posts for support at the corners?? I want to take those out too but how to take them out and not have the room fall off the house??

Would I build a footing PAD first on both sides of the treated Post, then go on and build the cement block tower thing on each side....then put "shims" or whatever you call the little pieces of wood that would make the cement block tower reach the house wood frame part....Joists I think it is called....the floor Joists.....and then knock out the wood post???

OR would I put those metal Leg temporary things that hold up a house in there.....build the whole footing plus the cement walls and then take out the temporary metal leg things? I think I might could put some sort of Brace under the corners and hold that up with the metal legs....??

My husband would just kill me if I let the rooms fall off the house and down the hill...so I need to figure this out......Thank you!
................Like stush said you can reinforce , and you could use some angle iron say 3"x5"x1\4" thick and fit it under the outer perimeter beams and use concrete blocks and small wood strips too get it level . Then maybe hire a backhoe too come in and dig out the perimeter so you can pour a beam with steel in it . Or , you could dig it out with a shovel if you're so inclined . I'd think a backhoe could dig it out in less than an hour unless you have issues with rock .
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  #4  
Old 05/12/10, 04:17 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: lat 38 23' 25" lon -84 17' 38"
Posts: 3,050

Stush had the idea, what we would call needle braces (a stout timber or steel beam with cribbing under each end) to hold the building at grade and then you can build the wall. Once the wall is built on each side of the needle brace it can be removed and the opening finished. Same idea is used to replace a foundation wall or to raise a house to move it.

Is this a doublewide or mobile home? If so the frame should hold it up. Skirting is placed to close out critters and wind as well as make the thing look nice.

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Old 05/12/10, 04:54 PM
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I did this by lifting up the house on car jacks (actually big truck bottle jacks), digging down, building my wall and then setting the house back down. Rather than block I made a poured bond ring beam, steel reinforced concrete. Once I did that the house never shifted again. Nice.

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  #6  
Old 05/12/10, 06:04 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western North Carolina
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Hello - yes, this is a normal house and not a mobile home. We added the two rooms but at the time we did not know how to lay cement blocks.......well we still don't but I am going to get some help with that part.....and now we need to do it right. Should have done it the first go round...but live and learn.

So - I have some of those metal "jack" things and so I will jack it up....pour the cement footing and then try and find a Block Man that is sober and will show up........

I have some really huge beams ....think they are white oaks.......can I use those to make a side ways brace thing and just hold up the corner......with the metal jack things holding up the beams? It would be "catty corner" over the corner of the room........with the metal jacks out of the way of where I need to pour the cement footing? If the Jacks are firmly in place........and the beam cross wise holding the corner........does that sound OK???

Thank you everyone!

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  #7  
Old 05/12/10, 08:28 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,069

I did a similar job on small ranch we owned. The end wall of the crawl space frost heaved inward and needed to be replaced. After supporting the house and jacking the end up an 1/8" or so, I dry stacked the concrete block and trimmed the top block to fit tight with a diamond blade in an old circular saw. I then coated the dry stack block with surface bonding cement. Try googling this stuff. It makes a wall that is stronger than a standard mortared block wall, and requires a lot less skill. good luck.

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  #8  
Old 05/12/10, 08:34 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: lat 38 23' 25" lon -84 17' 38"
Posts: 3,050

If the beams are stout enough and if they are placed where they can carry the load and if the jacks you are using can hold the weight that should be fine. Jacks are rated in the tons they can support. White oak is a stout timber. Is there a lot of weight in the room? Pianos, water barrels, weight machine with tons of weights? Sounds like you got a good idea of what needs to be done, you'll need to make the call on the variables since you are on site. I'd go with a beam under joists (to support the floor) and across the sills at points (to support the walls). If you care to post some pictures I think you could get a better answer.

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  #9  
Old 05/13/10, 04:01 AM
 
Join Date: May 2004
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Whatever you do, remember to leave an inspection door so someone can get into the crawl space.

While you're thinking about digging and concreting around there, you might consider putting in a cellar not quite as big as the rooms (the easy way), or all the way out so the cellar walls support the room walls. Costs more now, and you may decide you don't need it, but consider it. It'll never be cheaper to do than now, and you really couldn't do it right in the future without destroying what you're about to do.

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  #10  
Old 05/13/10, 07:29 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western North Carolina
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Wogglebug - good idea but we already have a cellar and just need to close up under these two rooms. But - good idea.

FarmerWilly2 - no, there is nothing very heavy in the rooms! But that does give me the idea to move the furniture to the other side while doing this work. Thank you. One room is a bedroom so I will move the bed and dresser away and the other room is a huge "mud room" & laundry but the only heavy thing on that side would be the washing machine. I can use the washer over at our Cabins and keep that water weight off it until we are finished. I do not remember the ton weight on the metal-jack-things I have but I kept the paper with them (yep - I am complusive) and so I can check it that way. When I had to use them last time (after a cement block pier post broke) I doubled up to be sure I had enough but I did not think to read about the weight. They are heavy metal jacks and big. Thanks for that idea too.

Thank you everyone! We start the digging in the morning!

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  #11  
Old 05/13/10, 04:08 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: lat 38 23' 25" lon -84 17' 38"
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Let us know if you have any problems or questions.

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