DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Flooring > Subfloor slopes downward from exterior wall for 2-3ft then levels off...




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Old 01-08-2008, 07:53 AM  
andersp
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Ok, here's some real life pictures. First one is a shot from the basement, and you can see the gap underneath the last joist before the wall, and there's even a tiny gap under the 2nd last joist. The 3rd joist from the wall is sitting on the beam. The second picture if from upstairs in the same spot right above where I took the first picture. You can see the bedroom wall on the right that I mentioned above, and if you look in the bottom right corner of the picture, you can see the gap underneath the drywall, and it gradually disappears as you move along the wall towards the green wall. This indicates the slope.

Hope this clears it up...



im000565.jpg   im000566.jpg  
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Old 01-08-2008, 04:19 PM  
glennjanie
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Hello Andersp:
I think I am seeing a double 2 X 12 beam with floor joists crossing over it and meeting joists coming from the other way. Perhaps the joist coming from the other side is on the beam and the ones on this side are held up to make them match on the top. The crack under the drywall is normal; you'll see that in a lot of houses.
Let's give the floor a marble test; got a marble? Lay it down by the green wall and see if it moves and in which direction. As an appraiser, I used to drop a pencil and see if it would roll. That was in a strong coal mining community and many houses sunk a foot on one end or on the backside as the old works under them fell in. Lay the marble in several places, stretch a string from wall to wall and measure under the string to the flooor.
Sorry, I just don't see that much of a problem here.
Glenn



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Old 01-08-2008, 04:32 PM  
andersp
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You are right, there is a joist for one half of the wall, and another joist for the other half, both meeting up in the middle over top of the main support beam. Both joists are completely lifted up off the main support beam, and still attached to the subfloor. The slope is steep enough to the point that I could not install hardwood over it. The pencil would probably beat the marble in a race The slope isn't too bad in the corners of the house along that wall, but a foot or two from the corner is when the slope really kicks in and consistently gets worse toward the middle of the wall (i.e. directly over the main support beam). I assume the corners are unaffected because the joists are embedded in the concrete foundation.

Your thoughts?

Thanks again!

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Old 01-09-2008, 05:45 AM  
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Default Shrinkage....

Your problem is typical of most homes. The wood shrinks and we end up with settled floors, cracked tape joints and gaps everywhere.
What to do? You could go around and jack things up here and there, then fix all the sheetrock cracks and such. Or leave it be and call it character in the home.
The nails are still holding the joists up at the beam, they wont move without some serious banging of the floor. The wood joists which have bends will also most likely stay bent. This is called "wood creap"( what did you call me)
This to me looks like my house when I purchaced it. I went around and jacked things and shimmed them where it was possible. I broke some sheetrock and replaced it and painted. Now I have floors which do not bend to the center as much. It takes alot of work ,but doing it gradually is OK too.
Just make sure you do not change any pipe drains so they are going the wrong way.
I used a lazer level in the basement to check my hieghts. The problem was my foundation was a half inch out of level, so I split the difference.
Have fun.

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Old 01-09-2008, 06:51 AM  
andersp
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Well, I would love to be able to leave it, but the slope is so steep for 2-3 feet from the wall that I will have to do something with it because I can't install the hardwoods with huge gaps underneath.

I have one other issue that I discovered at the other end of the house. There is one joist that seems to be pushing up where two subfloor sheets meet. Looking from below, all looks normal. So, I'm assuming that I can remove/replace area with new subfloor and shave joist a bit if required to level it off?

Thanks again.

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Old 01-10-2008, 05:35 AM  
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Default Sure

I would start with jacking things slowly and se where it goes from there. You may also be able to cut the nails at that joist and bring it down with jsut a few jumps or hits with a large hammer.
If that does not work then remove subfloor and have a straightedge to see how much to remove.
Just jacking that beam in the pocket looks like it will help. Just do not use wood to support underneath, it will just compress again. Use steel.
Good luck, we love more pictures too.

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Old 01-10-2008, 06:41 AM  
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Well, for my hump at the other side of the house, I read that I could just take a floor grinder/sander to it to level things off and make sure the nails/screws are below the surface enough so that they do not interfere.

As for the slope along the exterior wall, I'm thinking that I want to make a cut in the middle of the last joist before the foundation to start. See if I'm able to lower the joist back onto the main support beam once the floor is "released". If the joist is stubborn and won't lower, than I guess I can shim it underneath to fill in the gap to support it, and just shave the last two joists a bit and replace the subfloor at a level position.

Any reason why this should not work?

Thanks again.

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Old 01-11-2008, 05:40 AM  
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Default Hmmmm

Well, It is like I stated before. I would jack things up to the highest point possible in the areas which need it. Things settle down, they hardly ever lift up. The one joist which has lifted may look that way because everything else has fallen. I just hate to cut things when you have other alternatives. I know it is easier to just cut a joist but that is your call You could end up chasing this issue around when all you had to do was a little extra work to begin with. Don't forget in the areas you can not get perfect you can also use a self leveling floor mastic, kind of like concrete. Now these are only my opinions from what I can see and what you have explained. More pictures with levels on the floor or a straight object with contrasting color can help to understand more. Also you can call in a contractor to get their opinion and see if there is something we are all missing.
Let us know...

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Old 01-11-2008, 06:26 AM  
andersp
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Thanks everyone for your help. After hearing what everyone has been saying, and talking to a guy who's been building houses for over 30 years, I have determined to make the adjustments at the beam. The main beam below the sloped area has definitely settled at the point where it rests on the foundation because there's a small gap above it. I will try to jack it back to it's original height and shim it underneath with metal shims. This should bring the beam back up to the joists so that the joists can lay on the beam once again. If other adjustments are required afterwards with the teleposts across the house, so be it.

Thanks again.

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Old 01-11-2008, 06:49 PM  
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Default Good luck

Sounds like you found someone who will help you out. That's great. Let us know what else we can help with and keep us in the loop. We would love to know how it turns out and any pointers you can give to others.



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