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-   -   rotting beam (http://www.houserepairtalk.com/f45/rotting-beam-7385/)

seaox 08-24-2009 07:09 PM

rotting beam
 
My wife and i ended up moving into her dad's old house ( the one my wife grew up in) her dad still owns it and dont need it, he has basically said if you can fix it you can have it...the house is not in bad shape ( we live 15 minutes from the beach and it held for hurricane ivan) i'm pretty sure it was built in the late 1960's...

it has real hard wood floors and what looks like 5/8" thick boards under the real wood floor..but heres where it gets bad, it doesnt have a crawl space the floor joists sit about 4" off of the dirt under the house :eek: and it has some issues with the floor settling...this is due to a leaking hot water heater, and a washing machine (the washing machine and hotwater heater are back to back with a wall in between them)...

When we first moved in the house about a year ago noticed one wall in the hall starting to settle ( this is the wall that seperates the hot water heater and washer) so i cut a hole 2'X5' in the floor to inspect joists, most looked solid ( so i repaired the damaged ones and jacked and blocked them up to where they needed to be ) but there is a beam running under where the washer and hotwater heater sat that is falling apart ( rot from the water) i need to replace about a 10'-15' section it appears..what is the easiest way to do this ??

i'm guessing cutting the floor along the beam and supporting the joists while i install a new beam (the one thats there now is a 2x8 with a 2x6 laying horizontal on the bottom ( like an upside down T) the 2x6 floor joists rest on the bottom ledge of the "upside down T beam" any idea the cost if i hired a contractor to do this work for me ?? just a ball park, i know it will vary depending on alot but just wondering $1000 or $2000 ??


i work with wood and power tools all day at work so thats no problem its just that i have to find out how to go about it the right way

I have wondered for a while how much it might cost to lift the whole house about 18" or if its even possible, to make it easier for future repairs and any plumbing problems that might arise... any ideas on price or if its possible ?? again i know it will vary alot just looking into some options

i just want to say i have been browsing around the site some and love it look forward to the advise and future posting thanks !! :)

glennjanie 08-25-2009 02:24 PM

Welcome Seaox:
I doubt that your house has very good ventilation, being that close to the ground. There may be other damage to the joists under there.
I would start at the end of the house and tunnel out enough space to work on the beam. Then you can shore the joists up temporarily and put in a new beam. Use only treated lumber and try to get some positive (fan-forced) ventilation under the floor.
Raising the house is a big undertaking with risk of life and limb; you can expect to pay a high price.
Glenn

seaox 08-26-2009 05:13 PM

first off thanks for the reply !!

the house has a type of skirting at the bottom i guess you could say kinda like a mobile home but only about 8" tall they have a couple of solids then a vented one, so i agree it should have more ventilation...i actually work for a vinyl siding company. Would it work if i pulled all the old skirting out and just replaced it all with vented would that fix the ventalation problem ??

that tunnel is a good idea i had thought of it before and i guess it makes the most sense, just alot of work but if the end result means solid floors and make the house good i am all for it...the dirt under the house is so dry its pretty much sand anyways so maybe it wont be too bad...

I'm looking forward to using the site alot because after the floors i will be redoing the tongue and groove walls with sheetrock ( the tongue and groove is beat up and gouged pretty bad) and will be doing tons of other stuff if i can get this floor close to being level :D thanks again for the advise

seaox 08-29-2009 06:49 PM

rotting beam
 
Well i started digging and got about 4' long by 18" deep dug out and even though its sand its still alot of work !! i have a couple of pictures of the front of my house and i got to noticing from under the house looks like the sill plate along the front of the house isnt far from the dirt !! i have attached pictures ( the side of the house first then the front) in the front there is skirting under the siding but you cant see it..my opinion is the house needs to be raised to get it up away from the dirt because i believe this will further the rot along the front of the house...


the house pretty much sits "on grade" with the yard and the road (which is about 20 ft away) so if i dig out the front and underneath the house, the lowest part of my yard will be under my house. Wouldnt this be asking for a ton of water to "pool" under my house :confused:


also if the best way is still to dig it out, is there a giant shop vac contraption of some sort to help removing the dirt easier..i was reading on the internet that a guy was using some kind of industrial vac to help him but the post was from a long time ago :D He would take the hose under the house and suck the sand up and it would shoot the sand in the yard...




Side of house

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v5...n/100_2914.jpg



front of house

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v5...n/100_2912.jpg

glennjanie 09-01-2009 04:55 PM

Hello Seaox:
I don't know of a vacum that will remove the sand but it will make it easier if you tie a rope to both ends of a piece of metal, drag it under the house with one rope, load the metal with dirt, and have someone else drag it out by the other rope and dump it.
You are correct about the water pooling in your excavation. That can be remedied with a sump hole and pump near the outside. FHA and HUD require that wood structures be built at least 24" above the ground. Yes, yours needs to be raised to 3 concrete blocks high. It won't be an easy project.
Glenn

kwmainer 09-02-2009 02:10 PM

I wonder if in the long run, it wouldn't be 'easier' (but expensive) to literally make a new foundation - poured, sized needed for the house, ready to go with water/sewer connections... then move the house onto the new pad. There's a house over in West Palm they did that to. (Mizner house). Course, it would need permitting, GC/Engineering and the house moving company... But easier in the long run? Dunno. Sounds frightfully expensive. It's way more major work and cost than you were looking to do...

travelover 09-02-2009 04:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kwmainer (Post 34179)
I wonder if in the long run, it wouldn't be 'easier' (but expensive) to literally make a new foundation - poured, sized needed for the house, ready to go with water/sewer connections... then move the house onto the new pad. There's a house over in West Palm they did that to. (Mizner house). Course, it would need permitting, GC/Engineering and the house moving company... But easier in the long run? Dunno. Sounds frightfully expensive. It's way more major work and cost than you were looking to do...

It has lasted 40 years.......so if he replaces the rotted wood with pressure treated wood it will probably last him the rest of his life.

If it were me, I'd just create a crawl space with sump, add more ventilation and live with it. Can't beat the price he paid.

kwmainer 09-02-2009 04:24 PM

lol... true true!!! Price was right and it'll last for 50 years or more!

seaox 09-08-2009 07:25 PM

actually i think we are just going to pay to have the whole house raised 24" and leveled, the estimate over the phone was $2500 i think this is cheap enough and will probably do it when i get my taxes back this comming year, in the mean time i will be tunneling to get to the main beam to replace the 8- 10 feet that is bad so we can jack up on it when we lift the house

glennjanie 09-09-2009 09:48 PM

Hello SeaOx:
That is a good price! I charged that much to raise a house 20 years ago. We had already done extensive rehabilitation work on the house and I could'nt be sure how much of it might be damaged in the raising. It worked out that we raised it in 2 1/2 hours without any damage and the crew told me, "You owe us lunch at Moonlite BBQ in Owensboro". I gladly loaded all 8 in my truck and went to lunch. It was a very good day.
Glenn


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