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homersipes 02-01-2014 07:42 PM

ideas on jacking up a 2 story house
So my house was built in 1903 and the back half is settling due to he stone foundation. I am a pretty good at doing DIY things, just never jacked a house. Okay so the house obviously has a stone foundation, the back half is about 8 feet from a very steep bank, the foundation in the back is kind of buldging out, so this is my issue. So my thinking was to cut out sections of the concrete floor, dig down and put in sauna tubes to put screw jacks on. build up a beam using 2x10s just as you would a header to go the entire length of the back side of the house, would need to probably use 6 jacks to raise it up then once its up put in a flat 2x8 on the top of the foundation as a gap filler and shim up to the sill, then just leave the jacks there permanently as I just build rc planes down there. then the weight isnt on the foundation, I could use bigger tubes and once its raised put in some 8x8s next to the jacks then could remove the jacks. is this feasible, or am I day dreaming here?the floor beyond the wall in the pics is perfectly level, its the floors above where my planes are that is the concern.
I live in vermont, and the main part of the house is a gable end here is what the house looks like from the outside, sorry I dont have any pics of the outside that are real good.
part of it is the kitchen to the right which is an add on, the other is the original house which is where the gable end is.

JoeD 02-01-2014 09:30 PM

This most definitely needs a structural engineer to give solution. Depending on the solution the implementation MIGHT be DIY.

BridgeMan 02-03-2014 08:35 PM

I agree with JoeD. A good engineer will be able to tell you the cause of the settlement, and the best approach for correcting the situation.

If you try to do the job yourself, make sure to use heavy movers jacks and not flimsy automotive screw jacks. Also, take the sono tubes (a sauna is a hot room for sweating in) down far enough to get below the ravine's steep slope line--not doing that means the sono tubes could move and kick out in the future.

nealtw 02-03-2014 10:56 PM

Sono tubes would require a footing, size and depth to be decided after soil conditions have been judged by a geo-tech engineer. beams, posts and jacks can be dangerous combination. You didn't say about how far it has settled.

havasu 02-04-2014 08:20 AM

Sorry, but the RC plane being built distracted me. Can you post more pics of it, since it seems to be one hell of a work of art!

oldognewtrick 02-04-2014 08:39 AM

Wonder if he's heard of Team Flying Circus?

nealtw 02-04-2014 10:21 AM


Originally Posted by oldognewtrick (Post 99687)
Wonder if he's heard of Team Flying Circus?

Just post the link.

mudmixer 02-04-2014 10:54 AM

Keep in mind the settlement is probably not due to the stone foundation, but from the soil settlement.

Unless you are soil expert (not just gardening), you need someone to look at the big picture since it may continue.


bud16415 02-04-2014 11:17 AM

Has something changed after 110 years to now start your house to settle? Have you just recently seen the movement? If the house is new to you and you see out of level conditions they could have been like that for 75 years. How much out of level is it over how many feet?

Are there big cracks or gaps where the movement has taken that part of the house away? Any broken or stuck windows and doors etc? These can be clues as to how slow a process is going on. I agree get a pro in to study the structure and foundation and know that lifting it back if it has taken many years to change can cause other problems. You mentioned a steep bank close to the house. Is there ongoing erosion visible?

Many homes here on the bluff of the great lakes have shown similar problems and it’s not a matter of fixing the house. In most cases it’s cheaper to move the house than try and stop mother nature. Those are sever cases but when something has been stable for 100 years and then starts moving IMO that’s a sign of an outside influence.

mudmixer 02-04-2014 12:54 PM

It could be local soil failure/settlement or a "global" soil movement that does not necessarily cause a lot of cracks but tilting and some small cracks, but in the end, one part ends up being lower.

If you don't get to a stable soil with you repairs, problems could continue. That is the danger of not having someone looking at the big picture. most of the hillside home in CA that slide are built on a solid foundation, but the major big picture and long term changes cause the identifiable problems after they happen. That is an area extremes, but show what can be possible. - At least it is not the problem that happens in FL with the "small" sink holes that eat homes.


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