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Old 02-04-2012, 11:53 AM   #1
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


I don't even have a question, but looking at this is a little overwhelming and I'm struggling with motivation. I know what I have to do, but with 15" between the ground and my floor joist, I'm barely left with enough for my jack after I put in a 2x6 temp beam and a 2x10 under the jack... I'm out of jack posts, and even then they aren't short enough to take the place of the jack so I'm going to improvise with a cement block and boards....

Then I have to get a 2x10 beam into there, and excavate for a footing with enough space for a post under the 2x10 beam.

The electrical wires... yeah.

Not seen in the photo is the fact I also have to reroute a heating duct.
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Please do NOT consider any "before" picture of my house as any kind of endorsement of any particular construction method. In fact, you should probably assume that if I post a "before" picture, I am posting it because I am soliciting advice on a proper replacement for one of MANY things done wrong by a previous owner.
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Old 02-04-2012, 08:54 PM   #2
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


Wow. No envy from this end. Good luck. My friend has a place just like that, and hates with a passion having to grope around under there. Any possibility of getting a small excavator to dig you some room at all? That opens another can of worms, but maybe smaller worms. ???
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:03 PM   #3
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


To get any type of beam in there your going to have to bust out the foundation or feed it through a foundation vent. Not going to happen with that small hole.
As messed up as that house is from your other post you would be far better off lifting the whole house and fixing it right.
I see once you finish messing with that beam the whole house also needs to be rewired. Oh the joys of owning and old house.
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:42 PM   #4
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
To get any type of beam in there your going to have to bust out the foundation or feed it through a foundation vent. Not going to happen with that small hole.
As messed up as that house is from your other post you would be far better off lifting the whole house and fixing it right.
I see once you finish messing with that beam the whole house also needs to be rewired. Oh the joys of owning and old house.
What? You don't like that flex conduit on in the corner of the wall?

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Old 02-04-2012, 09:46 PM   #5
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


They could have at least painted it yellow to hide it.
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Old 02-05-2012, 10:06 AM   #6
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


I feel your pain.....at least you didn't have to re-route your entire drain line in your house. I had to pour a footing under a wall 8' long....right where the main drain was.....

A little advice....a BIG hole is just as easy to patch as a small hole.....make that hole bigger.....and dig out some of the dirt for more room....it will make life a 'little' easier...
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Old 02-05-2012, 08:56 PM   #7
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house


I was thinking this thread wasn't going to see any action! Okay, so some more info, followed by a progress report.

The house doesn't have a foundation, this is typical of what holds up the floor joists. Aside from my project adding beams, we intend to have a foundation dug and poured around the perimeter when I'm able to get financing. Would've been last fall, but I'd recently changed jobs and my application at the credit union was declined citing the recent job change plus my credit utilization, both of which will be within guidelines this summer.

Rewiring: that is among my projects long-term, this wiring was the main panel, but I've installed a new panel elsewhere in the house and the second floor is rewired - it was worse. The first floor will get rewired as the old wiring is phased out from moving the first floor bathroom, kitchen and stairway.

Access holes: The hole shown is the most recent hole I've cut, I have 6 other access holes - 2 of which are in this room. Most of the rest of the crawlspace is 27" deep, some as deep as 36", only the last 8' of the house is 15" deep. Feeding boards into the crawlspace is done through an outside access hatch cut through the brick veneer. I already have most of my 2x10's fed into the crawlspace.

If I call the 4 beams beam 1 (northernmost) through beam 4 (southernmost) then beam 3 is built and beam 2 is ready to build, I just wanted to bet beam 1 built before beam 2 because beam 2 will obstruct one of my other crawlspace opennings, forcing me to crawl under beam 2 to get to beam 1.

Re-routing drain lines. Actually, that was one of the first thing I had to do after we moved into the house. I knew that the drain pipe under the driveway was in bad shape because before we moved in, I had to snake it because I had backflow from the standpipe for the humidifier. We've since had that replaced, but the snaking had made that last through the first winter.

The drain line I found out I had to replace AFTER we moved in was the one going to the other side of the house where the kitchen and laundry are located. That pipe had failed somewhere underground and was bubbling up around where the new-er PVC joined into the clay coming out of the ground in the middle of the house. I ran new PVC drain. I had to rerun most of it again because I needed to reroute the stack to clear beam 1 further forward.

I'm a bit slowed down this weekend by some back pain, but once I wrangled the materials into place, the second try went easy....

First try, I wanted to place a 2x10 under my low profile 20 ton jack, then a 1/4" steel plate under the triple 2x6 temp beam.. That didn't fit. So I had to dig out under the 2x10, and once I did that everything fit, and I was able to lift until I took the pressure off the wood on top of the brown cinder block. I had to break the block up with a sledge hammer, and I placed a cement block under my temp beam, but the house didn't lower that far. I'm leaving it in place just in case for now.

Next, I have to reroutethe heating duct. That'll be a project done from another access point after my back feels a little better.
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One of the cement blocks holding up my house-ne-corner-beam-challenge-progress.jpg   One of the cement blocks holding up my house-ne-corner-beam-heating-duct-challenge.jpg  
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Please do NOT consider any "before" picture of my house as any kind of endorsement of any particular construction method. In fact, you should probably assume that if I post a "before" picture, I am posting it because I am soliciting advice on a proper replacement for one of MANY things done wrong by a previous owner.
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