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STRUCTURAL INSPECTIONS & DEFECTS
AGE of a BUILDING - how to determine
BRICK FOUNDATIONS & WALLS
CHIMNEY INSPECTION DIAGNOSIS REPAIR
COLD POUR JOINTS, CONCRETE
COLUMNS & POSTS, DEFECTS
DISASTER BUILDING INSPECTION & REPAIR
EARTHQUAKE DAMAGED FOUNDATIONS
FLOOD DAMAGE ASSESSMENT, SAFETY & CLEANUP
FLOOD DAMAGE TO FOUNDATIONS
FOOTING & FOUNDATION DRAINS
FOOTINGS EXPOSED, Repair Methods
FOUNDATION BULGE or LEAN MEASUREMENTS
FOUNDATION CONSTRUCTION TYPES
FOUNDATION CONTRACTORS, ENGINEERS
FOUNDATION CRACKS & DAMAGE GUIDE
FRAMING DAMAGE, INSPECTION, REPAIR
GRADING, DRAINAGE & SITE WORK
GUTTERS & DOWNSPOUTS
INSECT INFESTATION / DAMAGE
MOBILE HOMES, DOUBLEWIDES, TRAILERS
MODULAR HOME CONSTRUCTION
MOISTURE CONTROL in BUILDINGS
RETAINING WALL DESIGNS, TYPES, DAMAGE
RETAINING WALL GUARD RAILINGS
STRAW BALE CONSTRUCTION
STRUCTURAL DAMAGE PROBING
STRUCTURAL WOOD ASSESSMENT
THERMAL EXPANSION of MATERIALS
TIMBER FRAMING, ROT
WATER BARRIERS, EXTERIOR BUILDING
WATER ENTRY in BUILDINGS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
Block foundation damage: horizontal cracks, bulging, leaning due to damage during construction: this article describes the types & causes of horizontal cracks in the mortar joints of a concrete block wall or foundation wall that is damaged during original construction, typically during backfill.
We point out a special type of crack showing wavy, unbroken mortar as compelling evidence of the time of damage occurrence: before the mortar had hardened. The article notes that combinations of block foundation wall damage may be present and should be identified and evaluated. The page top photo shows a combination of open mortar joint in the block foundation wall and significant inwards bowing of the wall; this wall may be in danger of collapse.
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Wavy mortar foundation cracking: Our photo at left and the photos shown above right illustrate open crack sin the concrete block foundation wall of three different older homs. These wavy mortar cracks were detected in a home's basement.
The wavy mortar is not a shrinkage crack.
The un-broken but wavy mortar in the joint between the concert blocks tells us that this wall was pushed inwards at the time of new construction, before the mortar had hardened.
Perhaps if the builder had waited for her block foundation wall to cure before pouring the garage slab (or had reinforced the block wall) this crack would not have occurred.
Watch out: because combinations of forces can be at work on a foundation wall that seems "cracked" or damaged in any way, it is possible to have both old movement that occurred at the time of backfill or construction (wavy mortar that is not broken) and more recent ongoing movement and damage from any of a variety of causes.
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