Floor Joists Lifting Off Foundation Walls?!
I bought a house in a neighbourhood notorious for its shifty soil conditions. The home inspector who we hired had inspected the house 4 years prior -- he said that there had been some downward movement of the foundation walls since then, but that since the grading had been taken care of, it had probably stopped. Since moving in, we've had cracks appear in the upstairs walls, etc. This is common in this neighbourhood. That's the background -- now the real problem:
The house was built in 1961, and the floor joists are poured into the foundation wall (there is no foundation wall above them, and no rim joist.) About 1/2 of the foundation walls are visible, and in almost all spots, the joists are no longer resting on the foundation wall. In some spots, they are as much as 1/2" up. Other spots they are only 1/4" or 1/16" up. They have also moved side to side, punching small holes in the parging on both sides of the house. Perhaps this shows that the foundation walls are moving inward. Needless to say, I am worried about a few things:
a) will the joists break, as they are unsupported on the end. (The basement is finished, and in spots, the basement walls aren't floating any more -- this agrees with the hypothesis that the foundation walls have sunk.)
b) without downward pressure on the walls, will they begin to move inward from the pressure of the ground?
I could rip out the finishing, and brace the basement with 4" channel iron poured into the basement floor, etc -- that's a job I am not eager to do. But, if it needs to be done...
Would it work to shim the floor joists on the ends, to redistribute the weight? If so, what would I use? Grout has been suggested -- thoughts on that?
Thanks so much for any feedback you can give -- I'm feeling rather overwhelmed with the whole thing, and just want to know what I can do to fix it!
maybe there's a specific kind of material/wood that would be good for these floor joists , like something more porous, that expands and is flexible but still provides support?
fishfool @ The Reef Tank
oh i didn't see how old this thread was
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