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Old 04-06-2011, 02:59 PM   #1
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


Hey Everyone...
I have a two story flight of exterior stairs where the majority of my 4x4 posts are rotting away at the footings.





I have come up with a solution that I think will work that doesn't require taking out the post entirely (which really isn't possible) or splicing in a new piece.
The plan will be to remove the existing blocks the post are sitting on, cut out the dry rot portion of the post, dig new footings and fill with concrete.
The one thing that needs to happen is that the new footing will need to be extended upwards to make up for the dry rot that was cut off... so my question is how high can I extend an 8" column (using a sonotube form) above the ground.
(Proposed Detail)

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Old 04-06-2011, 03:46 PM   #2
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


When you look at coastal homes on piers.....



and bridge piers....



and just decks in general.....




I'd say you can go up as high as you need ( 1-2') to as long as you design it properly.
You may want to include some rebar if it gets too high.

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Old 04-06-2011, 04:30 PM   #3
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


I'd check your local codes on footing sizes. I bet you need to go bigger than 8", particularly if you are extending above ground any distance at all.

A regular pier block has a foot print larger than 8" and that is the smallest footing you can use locally and never for anything near the size of what you are looking at supporting.

Good luck.
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Old 04-06-2011, 04:50 PM   #4
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


I have set hundreds of 8" to 10", sometimes larger, tubes for second story motel walkway columns. Needless to say the size and rebar were specified by engineers.

http://www.sonotube.com/products/son...sizechart.aspx
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Old 04-06-2011, 05:01 PM   #5
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


The area under the footing will be determined by the load on the post and the strength (capacity) of the soil.

The depth of the concrete depends on the code minimums or frost depth.

Use a Simpson bracket attached to the concrete (before or after pouring) that eliminates concrete contact with the wood.

Do not put concrete around the base of the wood post since it retains moisture that can be absorbed by the wood eventually and stops drying out.

Dick

Last edited by concretemasonry; 04-06-2011 at 08:37 PM.
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Old 04-06-2011, 05:05 PM   #6
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Fixing Rotten 4x4 on exterior stairs


Quote:
Originally Posted by Willie T View Post
I have set hundreds of 8" to 10", sometimes larger, tubes for second story motel walkway columns. Needless to say the size and rebar were specified by engineers.

http://www.sonotube.com/products/son...sizechart.aspx
From the website...
"Builder's tubes are designed for below-grade use, but may be poured to three feet above the ground line. They are not designed to be stripped. No bracing is needed unless used two feet above ground line. Even then, bracing requirements are minimal."

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