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Old 07-03-2018, 10:39 AM   #1
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Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly


Hi all,

I recently purchased a home with a garage built into a hillside.

It is leaning badly. I am almost certain this is because of insufficient draining and improper grading.

Basically, the earth has been allowed to slope towards the garage on two sides. I can see where the water is getting up against the walls. It seems to be eroding the topsoil in a couple places, and with no proper drainage, it likely causing bad pressure and the lean.

Someday I might want to replace the garage - but for now I just want to stabilize it from falling further into the neighbours'.

My tentative plan is to dig out the topsoil around the poorly graded sides, and replace it with impervious fill that is properly graded away from the garage. Then do a thin layer of topsoil above that for grass.

I know that, in addition to the impervious soil, it should have drainage - but the proper place for that would be at the bottom of the foundation - and that would be a massive job, needing an excavator (as you can see, it is basically impossible to get any kind of excavation equipment up to this area).

I am also considering the use of foundation wall anchors like this (https://www.supportworks.com/solutions/geolock.html), which would also, I hope, stop the garage from leaning further.

What do you think? Would grading with impervious soil keep this thing from leaning further? Or do I need to consider more drastic measures (wall anchors, or worse, completely digging out the soil around the garage...which is probably about 6ft deep).

Pics below.
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Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly-pf64mzn.jpg   Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly-pkxq6rk.jpg   Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly-svy2fms.jpg   Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly-thq3zgy.jpg   Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly-uodysim.jpg  


Last edited by jmetrail; 07-03-2018 at 10:43 AM.
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Old 07-03-2018, 01:15 PM   #2
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Re: Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly


The newer concrete retaining wall has been added and back filled. The garage was not built to be a retaining wall.
At the very least you need drainage, I think you need an engineer
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:29 PM   #3
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Re: Garage built into hillside - buried on two sides - leaning badly


It looks like a large part of your problem is caused by your neighbors retaining wall and enclosed area. I'm guessing that enclosed area with a fence around it is a swimming pool? If that's the case it's exerting an extreme amount of pressure against the sides of your garage, something the garage probably wasn't designed for what it was originally built. In most areas that structure would not have been allowed to be built unless a complete engineering study was done to determine that it would cause structural and runoff issues and neighboring properties.
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