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Blake Patterson
 
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Default Cracks appearing in interior walls...what to do?

Almost two years ago we moved into this house. The original part of
the house is a colonial built in 1939, 2 story w/ basement. In the
late 50's / early 60's a large den / kitchen expansion was built onto
the house with basemenet adjoining the orig basemenet. 5-7 years ago a
2nd floor was put atop the den / kitchen expansion (I've got the permit
records for that but not the orig expansion).

In the past few weeks I noticed that along the ceiling / wall corner in
the bahtroom that is part of the most recent, 2nd floor expansion a
series of cracks up in the corner running around a good part of the
bathroom (3 walls - drywall). I went looking and found that there is a
crack between the plaster wall and moulding going down the main
staircase that was part of the original house - easily determined as it
has cracked part of the paint that was just applied 1.5 years ago. The
bathroom and kitchen under it are part of an overhang that extends off
the newish den and are supported by the orig house at one end and a
series of 2x2's that sit on a brick retaining wall at the other side -
not sure if the wall is reinforced underneath. Felt should eventually
augment support at that end w/ footing and a series of new 2x2's not on
the wall itself.

The original part of the house is brick 1st floor, masonite siding 2nd
floor (on the side of the house the basement is exposed and that wall
is brick so there's 2 floors of brick on one side). I notice no
stairstepping in any of the brick, nor patches from earlier stepping.

The time we moved in saw more rain in the area than had been present in
nearly 100 years. There are two under-house drainage pipes that run
into a gutter and they drained for months after we moved in. They've
been rather dry for a year aside from recent bit of activity due to
recent frequent precipitation, but nothign like before. I have sump
pump in the finished basement room (part of 2nd expansion) and it
hadn't kicked in for a year but did run a few days on and off a 3-4
weeks ago.

So...not sure what is causing this. I guess my real question is - who
would I get in to determine what is going on here? A structural
engineer?

Thanks for any help.




bp

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Art
 
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Default

You want a professional engineer. Check yellow pages ads. Usually they
specialize but if you call the wrong guy he will probably refer you to the
right guy.


"Blake Patterson" wrote in message
oups.com...
Almost two years ago we moved into this house. The original part of
the house is a colonial built in 1939, 2 story w/ basement. In the
late 50's / early 60's a large den / kitchen expansion was built onto
the house with basemenet adjoining the orig basemenet. 5-7 years ago a
2nd floor was put atop the den / kitchen expansion (I've got the permit
records for that but not the orig expansion).

In the past few weeks I noticed that along the ceiling / wall corner in
the bahtroom that is part of the most recent, 2nd floor expansion a
series of cracks up in the corner running around a good part of the
bathroom (3 walls - drywall). I went looking and found that there is a
crack between the plaster wall and moulding going down the main
staircase that was part of the original house - easily determined as it
has cracked part of the paint that was just applied 1.5 years ago. The
bathroom and kitchen under it are part of an overhang that extends off
the newish den and are supported by the orig house at one end and a
series of 2x2's that sit on a brick retaining wall at the other side -
not sure if the wall is reinforced underneath. Felt should eventually
augment support at that end w/ footing and a series of new 2x2's not on
the wall itself.

The original part of the house is brick 1st floor, masonite siding 2nd
floor (on the side of the house the basement is exposed and that wall
is brick so there's 2 floors of brick on one side). I notice no
stairstepping in any of the brick, nor patches from earlier stepping.

The time we moved in saw more rain in the area than had been present in
nearly 100 years. There are two under-house drainage pipes that run
into a gutter and they drained for months after we moved in. They've
been rather dry for a year aside from recent bit of activity due to
recent frequent precipitation, but nothign like before. I have sump
pump in the finished basement room (part of 2nd expansion) and it
hadn't kicked in for a year but did run a few days on and off a 3-4
weeks ago.

So...not sure what is causing this. I guess my real question is - who
would I get in to determine what is going on here? A structural
engineer?

Thanks for any help.




bp



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Blake Patterson
 
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I just did a better inspection. There are cracks along the plaster
wall / ceiling moulding in areas in all of the 1st floor parts of the
orig house. These are visible becasue everything was painted and it's
plain to see what has happened since that painting 1.5 years ago. In
one room there is a long hairline crack that runs along the plaster
wall itself, turns a corner, and keeps going. Doorframes between rooms
show moulding cracks. I am getting concerned now...


bp

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Banty
 
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Default

In article et, Art says...

You want a professional engineer. Check yellow pages ads. Usually they
specialize but if you call the wrong guy he will probably refer you to the
right guy.


I'll be looking for a professional engineer come spring regarding some new
stair-step cracking at a corner of my block foundation. Quite a few in the
yellow pages - any tips on picking a good one? Asking around for references has
gotten me some mixed results thus far.

Banty

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Art
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Might sound silly but you could call a lawyer who specializes in defective
residential construction litigation and ask who he recommends. His expert
would have to be highly qualified to survive cross examination and easy to
understand. I found 2 that way.


"Banty" wrote in message
...
In article et, Art
says...

You want a professional engineer. Check yellow pages ads. Usually they
specialize but if you call the wrong guy he will probably refer you to the
right guy.


I'll be looking for a professional engineer come spring regarding some new
stair-step cracking at a corner of my block foundation. Quite a few in
the
yellow pages - any tips on picking a good one? Asking around for
references has
gotten me some mixed results thus far.

Banty





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Joseph Meehan
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Blake Patterson wrote:
I just did a better inspection. There are cracks along the plaster
wall / ceiling moulding in areas in all of the 1st floor parts of the
orig house. These are visible becasue everything was painted and it's
plain to see what has happened since that painting 1.5 years ago. In
one room there is a long hairline crack that runs along the plaster
wall itself, turns a corner, and keeps going. Doorframes between
rooms show moulding cracks. I am getting concerned now...


bp


It is hard to see from here. Some cracks in older homes are expected.
Some however can be a sign if serious trouble. Don't assume the worst but
do check it out.

--
Joseph Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math


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