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Old 05-28-2012, 08:40 PM   #1
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Hi All,

This is a crack I found on the exterior brick. I dug down a bit and the crack continues. My questions is:

Should I continue to dig down until the crack stops? And if so, how do I go about sealing the crack (the best way)?

Thanks for reading!

Jeff
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:47 PM   #2
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


I'm a little concerned why earth is back filled above the foundation,covering the brick---

Water will go through brick and mortar--and can cause damage to the wood framing of the house--

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Old 05-28-2012, 09:09 PM   #3
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Yea, looks like im on a slight downslope, but the grass was about level with the foundation on the right and as you can see by the pic, it slants down the further you go to the left...
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:14 PM   #4
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


My brick knowledge is lacking--but there are a bunch of folks here who will give you a proper fix--

-Do add regrading to the list---I've been following your other thread on the leak at the porch slab--

What a dumb design--those cast stoops cause a lot of damage.
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:19 PM   #5
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Thanks for responding Mike. It's been a long haul so far, I'm just taking it one day at a time, taking the advise from the folks on here and hiring out what I can't do.

I have the storm door being installed in a few days, so that helps with the threshold from leaking...
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:24 PM   #6
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Wise move--installing storm doors can be a royal pain--but that will help-

along with keeping water from getting behind that step--
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:23 PM   #7
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Quote:
Originally Posted by oh'mike View Post
I'm a little concerned why earth is back filled above the foundation,covering the brick---

Water will go through brick and mortar--and can cause damage to the wood framing of the house--
The important thing is where is the top of the foundation--i.e., where is the mudsill. As long as it's 6" above grade, it's all good. It's possible the brick extends below the mudsill, as shown in this detail from Thallon's book Frame Construction

It's hard to tell from this pic if that's the case. We can assume where the top of the floor is, based on the door sill, but not knowing the depth of the joists...
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Old 05-29-2012, 06:55 AM   #8
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:02 AM   #9
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Quote:
Originally Posted by cortell View Post
The important thing is where is the top of the foundation--i.e., where is the mudsill. As long as it's 6" above grade, it's all good. It's possible the brick extends below the mudsill, as shown in this detail from Thallon's book Frame Construction

It's hard to tell from this pic if that's the case. We can assume where the top of the floor is, based on the door sill, but not knowing the depth of the joists...

Yea, I believe the brick goes further down, because where the white vent is on the right side of the picture, that goes through the rim joist, and its probably about 1 foot deep from the basement wall to the rim joist (from the inside).

Not sure if that helps you..


I guess I just need to know how to patch the crack. Do I use a cement mix, do I use that black tar looking stuff?
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:21 AM   #10
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Trucon01 View Post
Yea, I believe the brick goes further down, because where the white vent is on the right side of the picture, that goes through the rim joist, and its probably about 1 foot deep from the basement wall to the rim joist (from the inside).
OK, well then for sure your brick goes below the mud sill and you're probably fine in this regard.

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I guess I just need to know how to patch the crack. Do I use a cement mix, do I use that black tar looking stuff?
I don't mean to scare you, but trying to patch this might be like putting a band aid on a gaping wound. The crack extends below the brick and into the foundation. This tells me you likely have differential settling in your foundation, and that could be a big problem. I'm no expert though. What I do know is the last thing I'd be thinking about is how to patch that. Get on the phone with a few foundation companies and get them out there to figure out what's going on there.
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:42 AM   #11
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


BTW, if you have differential settling, that crack would extend through the entire width of the foundation wall. Is the foundation wall exposed in your basement or crawl space? If so, see if the crack is visible there. Though, maybe you have a monolithic slab foundation and this isn't an option.
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Old 05-29-2012, 10:06 AM   #12
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


My basement walls are concrete blocks and there are no cracks in it. Do you think I should dig down to see how far the crack goes (I'm assuming it will be the whole way).?
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Old 05-29-2012, 11:01 AM   #13
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


That's very interesting. This would point to a crack in the parging, which is typical and easy to address. However, why does the crack extend to the brick? Quite a mystery. If that was my home, I'd break away the parging to see what's going on behind it. Are the concrete blocks cracking on one side but not the other? Reparging that area is a straighforward DIY job. I think you really need to understand why the brick and the parging is cracking before you try to apply a superficial solution. Something isn't adding up here, and if there's a bigger problem going on, you want to find out sooner than later.
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Old 05-29-2012, 11:10 AM   #14
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


OK. So dig down the whole length of the crack and try to see what's behind it?

What kind of material would I get if I needed to re-parge the area?
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Old 05-29-2012, 11:27 AM   #15
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How to best seal this crack on the exterior?


Quote:
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OK. So dig down the whole length of the crack and try to see what's behind it?

What kind of material would I get if I needed to re-parge the area?
Oh, I would just start with a little area, below grade. All you're trying to do is see if the crack extends to the concrete block block wall.

Looking at your picture again, something still isn't adding up. That doesn't look like parging. It looks like poured concrete. But you say you have concrete block foundation wall, so that doesn't make sense. Also, note how the parging doesn't extend out beyond the brick. It seems flush with the brick, pointing again to the possibility that it isn't parging.

It's hard to tell from one picture. Can you tell if that's parging or concrete? Parging typically has brush or trowel streaks, and you won't see gravel in it.

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