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My house is crumbling...:(

Posted by brer (My Page) on
Thu, Jun 25, 09 at 20:22

I don't know who to ask about it.
I live close by a small lake, and I think the foundation of my house is being undermined. Also, the water from three streets comes right into my driveway. A few years ago I had the small utility room remodled, and when the workers took off the loose paneling, they saw a 2 inch crack in the foundation. They decided it was serious and took off the front porch of the house that was adjacent to the room (a nice slate porch, I might sadly add) and put a huge steel beam along the front of the garage to hope to support the front of the house.

Well, since that time, a hole has appeared at the side of the wooden porch. We keep putting gravel and sand into it, but it just keeps eating it. Also, last year in the blacktopped driveway one of the wheels of our car fell into a hole (on a hot day). We pushed the car out and filled that hole. We haven't resurfaced the driveway, because, what would be the point if it's just going to get another sinkhole. At least this way we can keep filling the hole.

Who should I talk to?
What can I do?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: My house is crumbling...:(

I'd think a structural or civil engineer would be a good place to start.

RE: My house is crumbling...:(

A geological survey company that specializes in sink holes. Seriously.

RE: My house is crumbling...:(

I would also recommend getting a topographical. An engineering firm will be able to explain the different services - i.e. structural, etc.

We are also dealing with drainage issues on one of our clients homes. I'm going to provide a list of some of the things we are recommending - incase you read this blog again.

Gutters around the entire house - diverted down into a french drain that drains away from the home - so you would have to run a pipe in the ground toward the back or wherever lower to get the moisture away from the foundation. When you get an engineer out, they could best tell you the french drain size and more details on direction it should run.

Addressing the street side: Is there a curb? If not, there should be one and there should be a storm drain installed - again with a french drain running to a lower elevation with some rip-rap to help divert the flow. If there is a curb and the water simply runs down your driveway, consider putting in a speed bump - this would be similar to a curb in height but would hopefully divert the water to the storm drain. Again, the engineer should be able to look at all angles here.

Do you have trees in your yard?? I would seriously encourage planting trees, grass, etc. in addition to what the engineer will advise you on, trees will help with some of the moisture - by simply absorbing some of the water.

It sounds like the water table is pretty high there. I hope your engineer is able to find a solution for you.

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