Pinning Sidewalk to Foundation

dave2007September 25, 2012

I'm replacing the sidewalk along one side of the house and am getting conflicting recommendations from contractors.

So far three bids want to pin the new pour to the foundation with steel rod and one adamantly opposes the idea. The house is 1914 construction on a cement block foundation and not poured concrete foundation.

What are the recommendations here?

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HandyMac

I am not a concrete expert, or even a concrete worker, so my opinion is based on logic and some experience with seeing how concrete ages over the 50 or so years I have paid attention to that sort of thing.

I really don't see the point in pinning to the foundation. When---not if---the side walk begins to move, the pinning will create stress points and the sidewalk will probably crack at the pin points.

My logic says pinning into concrete block is not a secure anchor to start.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 4:21PM
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lbpod

And, worst case scenario, it may eventually crack your
foundation.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2012 at 9:05AM
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don92

A ledger on the foundation might be the way to go. It would keep the sidewalk at the right height to the foundation and give it the flexibility of moving in and out. Angle iron bolted to the foundation would work as the ledger

    Bookmark   September 27, 2012 at 3:40PM
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dave2007

Thanks for the input. I agree that leaving the foundation intact is a good idea.

We're going to go with the bid that will avoid putting things into the foundation blocks. The contractor does good work and had good response from references.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2012 at 7:25PM
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brickeyee

A ledger without adequate fastening is going to have the same issues as pinning.

Concentrated point loads that could lead to cracking and failure of the foundation.

This is one of those things that calls for a LOT of smaller rated fasteners to distribute the load.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 10:41AM
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don92

brickeyee, I have used ledgers many times for sidewalks in the past 30 years with good results. Many things including decks are ledgered to foundation walls, a sidewalk is no different.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 10:10PM
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brickeyee

"Many things including decks are ledgered to foundation walls, a sidewalk is no different."

Except it is a much larger load than a wooden deck.

most of the deck ledger fastening riles now specify through fastening.

A deck attahced to just a pice ofrim joist is far to likelt to pull away.

I have used plenty of ledgers also, for decks, veneer brick, and even sidewalks and patios.

The problem of load concentration by inadequate spreading of the load remains, and is far wore in CBUs than poured concrete basement walls.

I also have earned plenty of repair money from ledgers that produced foundation cracking after a few years.

Tear out the sidewalk or patio, fix the foundation (often water leaking is the major issue that brings it to the owners attention).

For some funny reason water seems to 'prefer' running into the cracks to the interior more than going to the foundation drainage system below.

Probably something about an easier path.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 10:17AM
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don92

A sloping sidewalk on compacted soil and 4" of gravel make the load on a ledger negligible. It is more of a failsafe than the primary load bearing as a deck would be. Filling cells with mortar for bolt installation in cmu's.
I have never seen a foundation fail in any way from a sidewalk ledger.
Water can be an issue without proper slope, P. drain and gutters.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 11:12AM
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brickeyee

:A sloping sidewalk on compacted soil and 4" of gravel make the load on a ledger negligible. "

right up till the material compacts further and shifts the load.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 2:05PM
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