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Old 12-07-2011, 02:19 PM   #1
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brickwork problem


Hi,
A friend of mine's mother bought this house a few years ago. The brickwork seems to stick out between the houses, more so at the top. It has been like this since she moved in and hasn't got any worse.
We were wondering what has caused this to occur.
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Old 12-07-2011, 04:51 PM   #2
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brickwork problem


That doesn't look good to me. Only guessing: it could be structural failure or if a veneer wall, lack/failure of brick ties. Either way, I'd get a pro to come look at that. I'd guess a structural engineer or a good mason.
Any movement of structure inside the building? Gaps and/or cracks in walls/ceilings?
I'm sure a pro will chime in once they are home from working.

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Old 12-07-2011, 04:53 PM   #3
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Knowing what part of the country and what country you are in wouldn't be beneficial so don't bother telling us that.
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Old 12-07-2011, 06:56 PM   #4
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Interesting separation pattern.
Any water leaking evidence inside the house?
Bowing walls or cracked plaster?
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Old 12-08-2011, 08:59 AM   #5
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Many thanks for the replies so far.
The house is in London, England.
I believe that the walls are solid brick, about 10 inches thick.
There are no known water leaks or evidence of cracking. or bowing of the walls.
The house she owns is the one to the left of the jutting out brickwork.
It appears to get worse nearer the top.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
We were wondering what has caused this to occur.
Likely a foundation shift.
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Old 12-08-2011, 12:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by devonman View Post
Many thanks for the replies so far.
The house is in London, England.
I believe that the walls are solid brick, about 10 inches thick.
It looks like the outer row of bricks are not tied to the masonry behind it. On a veneer brick fascade, the bricks are tied to the wall with brick ties, nailed to the wood studs.
There should be something tieing that fascade to the wall behind it.
If you go on the roof and push the wall, is there any movement?
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Old 12-08-2011, 01:46 PM   #8
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I havn't been up on the roof yet. The wall seems to have a brick going longways, and then one going into the wall as if it's for a tie. This pattern is repeated all along the wall.
If it's a foundation problem I suppose that involves underpinning.
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:02 PM   #9
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I havn't been up on the roof yet. The wall seems to have a brick going longways, and then one going into the wall as if it's for a tie. This pattern is repeated all along the wall.
If it's a foundation problem I suppose that involves underpinning.
If a foundation problem caused that, why wasn't there associated damage on the interior walls and ceilings?
Easy to check, just go down the basement and look at the walls or go outside and dig a bit in that area.
But I doubt that's the issue. It's an in/out displacement shift, not a settling one.
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Old 12-08-2011, 07:21 PM   #10
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Looks a bit like a job I worked on a few years back. The walls had moved out about 4 inches possibly due to extra weight from concrete tiles replacing slates spreading the roof.
We rebuilt the front walls of one house, but next door didn't want theirs done, so we were told to built the new one plumb, and tooth out as we got higher up where it wouldn't run in with next door's.
It looked a bit silly, but it's what the punter wanted.
It might be a similar situation here.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:54 PM   #11
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If a foundation problem caused that, why wasn't there associated damage on the interior walls and ceilings?
I guess I should have followed through with my thought process a little further.

First of all this is in London England. Europe is well known for its masonry construction over wood framing construction so at this point I am assuming the entire building is a masonry structure.

Then I am further assuming the brick is only a veneer. A typical method. Of course the veneer (if it is) should be tied to the basic structure but that doesn't mean it is and that doesn't mean the forces haven't ripped any ties there may have been at one time.

When I said a "foundation shift" I guess I was thinking only of a foundation that supported the brick veneer. This isn't to say the foundation shouldn't be a common foundation supporting both the basic structure and the veneer but who knows - you know how the mind wonders and wanders.

What puzzles me most is how the two walls could possibly separate as it appears they have in such perfect "saw-tooth" fashion without crumbling at least several of the bricks. Even if a first wall was erected and left keyed to later receive the adjacent brick one would think the mortar and forces would be such that the obvious movement would most certainly destroy an ample number of brick but it doesn't seem so in the photo.
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Old 12-09-2011, 02:43 PM   #12
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What puzzles me most is how the two walls could possibly separate as it appears they have in such perfect "saw-tooth" fashion without crumbling at least several of the bricks. Even if a first wall was erected and left keyed to later receive the adjacent brick one would think the mortar and forces would be such that the obvious movement would most certainly destroy an ample number of brick but it doesn't seem so in the photo.
It could be that the wall was knocked down and toothed out on the house and then rebuilt plumb. Next door didn't want theirs done.
Only a guess though.

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