Front Steps Underpinnings Crumbling.. HELP - Building & Construction - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 12-31-2008, 12:24 PM   #1
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Front steps underpinnings crumbling.. HELP

New guy here, of course straight away with a problem.
The front steps to my house go up on a concrete slab, supported by.. something. It looks like old cinder blocks to me but please educate me.
Anyway the plaster has crumbled and all of a sudden within a week a good chunk of one corner of the support structure has crumbled.

I am asking everybody who knows how to basically fix this for their input. Bear in mind that it's pretty cold by now (I'm in PA) so I am not sure what my options are with regards to working with concrete.

Until I know how this should be fixed, I'm planning on bracing the corner with a wooden bracket made out of 2x4's, propped against the corner with 2x4's at a 45 degree angle. Does that make sense? I want to protect it from the elements until I can actually address the problem.

Any input really greatly appreciated. I understand hiring a professional is the best route, but I'd rather learn how to do it myself as I have very limited funds right now.

I'm trying to link in two pictures of the damage. Click on them for (very) large versions:

Thanks folks.



Last edited by Hans Meiser; 12-31-2008 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 12-31-2008, 06:24 PM   #2
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What I see is frost/freezing damage to cinder block. Water/moisture has gotten into the block, frozen and cracked the block. I do not see support problems. A good mason can fix that will little difficulty, but not sure of prevailing wages in your area. GOOD masons are not cheap, but I would guess about $500.

For references, ask friends, neighbors, co-workers, etc. They will not recommend someone that did a bad job.


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