Latest Discussions : Basement & Foundation

Travis F

02:56PM | 12/28/02
Member Since: 12/27/02
1 lifetime posts
I am considering a major reno to my old sidesplit house to gain space and efficiency. One option is the following - now before anyone rolls thir eyes, just hear me out. If you've done this before successfully, please contact me.
I am considering digging out the existing crawlspace - which is about 4 ft hi, concrete floor, quite large and ohh what a waste of space. I'm pretty sure that the walls do NOT go the full 8 ft depth. Is there any way around this without replacing the whole damn thing. Under-pinning sounds out of the question. Is it worth it? etc. To build out ( add-on) instead, I would be disrupting 3 rooms. This scheme (crawlspace) would be the least disruptive. I haven't seen much positive responses back from other forums but I'm not yet convinced that this wouldn't be worth checking out. I am handy, sensible, have access to heavy equipment. I have an idea from a friend about building an inside wall close to the existing wall without disturbing the foundation that might work-but I'm concerned about lateral pressures/shift. Any experience, advise is appreciated. Thanks.
Travis Fowler, Caledon East, Ont.


04:06PM | 12/28/02
Member Since: 11/06/02
1278 lifetime posts
You are right to be concerned about your friends idea. I have done similar projects and I have to tell you that it is only in your imagination that this would be the least disruptive. It can be done but not easily or inexpensively and I would encourage you to get together with a soils and a structural engineer first. If you were hiring me to do the work, the first thing I would do is aask for your engineering report or hire a guy at your cost. I wouldn't dream of taking chances like this with your home and my life without an idea of the type of soils, a plan for dealing with them, and a budget adequate for the task. The estimate for budget depends on knowing what you will be dealing with.
For instance, it might be that the reason it was originally built with a shallow crawl instead of full foundation is that there is much water in the soil at five feet in depth.

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