09:30PM | 11/14/06
Member Since: 03/05/04
301 lifetime posts

MOST likely, the reason(s) a basement wall can crack-leak-bow is from one OR more of following---

1) the SOIL that was used as Backfill against the outside of the wall settled/compacted which causes a spring-like lateral force against the way and caused the wall to crack-leak-begin to bow inward. Most builders use the SAME soil that was excavated to backfill, a few will use a LITTLE gravel-peastone BUT, still backfill w/mostly the same soil which was excavated.

2) the backhoe/equipment operator didn`t know and/or didn`t use any-enough CARE when backfilling heavy/large amounts of same soil against newly built walls. Walls where steel reinforcing rods were NOT used or sometimes, bsmt floor was NOT poured/installed and they still backfilled. Thing about using heavy equipment ALONE is that the WEIGHT of the equipement itself, when operated near/along basement walls can/could cause a wall to crack/bow.

3) the soil that was used for backfill finally got its first few soaking/rain and its always possible that, when clay is used as backfill against bsmt walls it, expands when it gets wet and then, contracts. THIS kind of Lateral-SOIL-PRESSURE OFTEN causes new/old wall(s) to crack,leak,bow inwards.

4) Tree ROOTS, roots can grow along/against outside of basement walls and certainly could cause a crack, leak, help push a wall inward.

5) some cracks/leaks can be caused from underground vibrations, again, from heavy equipment being operated close by, like in the street or even from house being close to a highway, yup.

Don`t believe me, this...

take time and read it....

for instance, see --Compaction-- 2nd para

"The problem is that the PRESSURE from the compacting process gets transmitted THROUGH the Soil to the WALL. Basement walls have been known to CRACK or fall over while earth is being dumped against them OR,compacted around them; so foundations should ALWAYS be BRACED BEFORE Backfilling.

AFTER compaction, SOIL is under compression like a spring and CONTINUE`s to PUSH Against the foundation as it tried to practice sands and gravels densify or compact more readily than silts or clays, creating LESS of this springlike FORCE--one more GOOD reason to use them for backfilling!!!!

--Careful On Construction Site--

"When there`s a heavy load on the ground next to a foundation, some of the PRESSURE is transferred to the WALL.During construction, bulldozers and trucks that come near a basement wall can add enough surcharge Pressure to damage the wall. A NEW building being built next to an existing basement can also INCREASE the Underground PRESSURE and DAMAGE the EXISTING foundation..."

Got milk?


09:36PM | 11/14/06
Member Since: 03/05/04
301 lifetime posts


06:35PM | 02/17/07
Member Since: 02/16/07
2 lifetime posts
We are building a home on the lake in south carolina. We have to build up 4.5 to 5 ft to be above the flood zone. So we decide to build up 10 feet so that we could use that space under the house garge and shop etc. I almost decided to use superior walls however after reading some of these post has me thinking other wise. What kind of basement would you use knowing all the pros and cons of each system. And for fyi purposes how much experience do you have years and if any with superior walls.

thanks Chris


03:27AM | 02/19/07
Member Since: 04/09/06
17 lifetime posts
1. Superior walls DOES NOT WARRANTY their product. The Cement Company is responsible for the product.

2. It took over 1 year for Superior Walls to acknowledge this.

3. Superior Walls says that the Bulging is USUALLY caused by the lack of support beams used when the concrete is poured. They are support the wall from below but (especially at windows) they often dont support the wall. They claim it is normal and that your walls are actually thicker in those spots...they also claim that concrete DOES flex.

4. The installer who did our house cut the lentils above the basement windows to prevent the windows from cracking. Thats OK with poured foundations but it is apparently a significant problem with superior walls because they have little "fudge factor" (I think of it as a truss vs stick built kind of thing).

5. Superior Walls STILL has not sent anyone out to look at the basement after 1 1/2 years and there are SUPERIOR WALLS foundations sitting bare without houses ever placed that have problems in South-Central NJ due to INSTALLER/CONCRETE issues.

6. SUPERIOR WALLS Sells a concept. They do not control or provide warranty. You need to have faith in locals for warranty and they can go in and out of business overnight---so much for a warranty


03:30AM | 02/19/07
Member Since: 04/09/06
17 lifetime posts
Would McDonalds come out to investigate if a franchise was serving defective hamburgers. YOU BETTER BELEIVE IT!


03:39AM | 02/19/07
Member Since: 04/09/06
17 lifetime posts
It may be that placing a concrete patio along the house caused weight that led to the basement walls flexing inward according to SUPERIOR WALLS.

With SUPERIOR WALLS, you have to block a minimum of a 4 foot by 4 foot section in each corner of the home and the placement of sill plate seams is crucial or the walls can fail. Also, the taller the basement, the more likely a SUPERIOR wall will fail.


05:31PM | 02/19/07
Member Since: 08/26/05
8 lifetime posts
As I posted before We have experiance no problems with our Superior Wall Basement.

The Local Franchise we dealt with Was Superior Walls of Ohio. They have been great,The Local Sale Rep. even made a follow-up Call a year later to see if we were still pleased with the product.

I can say our builder had plenty of experiance with the superior wall product and Installed the proper blocking, foundation drainage system and backfilling as per Superior Walls of Ohio specifications.

I question I have to ask is: Was the basement floor concrete placed after the first floor decking installed and before backfilling? Otherwise that could cause problems later as per Superior Walls of Ohio Specifications.

One last point I would use a precast basement wall system over a cast in place basement wall system because the consistency of concrete mix remains the same throught the pour and the concrete forms remain in place until the concrete has cured out enought to remove the forms without any damage to the concrete mix. Which does not always happen with a field constructed and placed concrete basement wall system.


03:31AM | 02/20/07
Member Since: 04/09/06
17 lifetime posts
We placed a modular home onto the superior walls. As far as poured vs superior walls, I think the concept is good but the SUPERIOR WALLS people have NO control over the concrete company or the Wall installer. In our case, the problem was with the installer. To prevent law suits, HE CLOSED HIS BUSINESS SO WE HAVE NO WARRANTY!!! (incidentally, within 2 months he installed superior walls in the home across the street under a different company name...a true insult to us...)


03:35AM | 02/20/07
Member Since: 04/09/06
17 lifetime posts
SUPERIOR WALLS claims it is due to sagging of the insulation foam during pouring of the concrete. They are poured on "layed down" over the foam. It makes some sense. REM: SUPERIOR WALLS takes no responsibility for the quality of concrete used or for the installer. They do not warranty their products!
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