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Question DetailsAsked on 11/21/2017

block wall crack repair cost

I have a 65 year old single story block building with vertical crack in the cement block that has separated approximately 1/8 to 1/4 inch in some places. the cracks start at the concrete floor and reaches to the ceiling. What could the cost be and how bad could it get?

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With that size crack and age of house, that would normally be considered a simple aging settlement crack - of significant concern only if it is letting water in or the wall is offset along the crack (either one side up or down relative to the other, or one part tilting in or out alongthe crack line). Commonly occur near the center of the foundation, usually because they have greater total load at the corners, or wider at the bottom because the center of the wall is sinking (usually due to poor compaction under the strip footer.


Unless causing cracking through the strip footer under the wall, is propogating up through the body of the concrete/cinder blocks (as opposed to zig-zagging up along the mortar joints), or is causing cracking or sticking doors/windows upstairs, usually no attempt is made to structurally adjust it. in this case, if water infiltration is not an issue, the crack is usually just injected with grout to reestablish the bond with the concrete or blocks and to limit outside water infiltration possibility. Usually the contractor will drill about 3/8 - 3/4" holes along the crack and inject grout though those holes, filling the crack with the grout under pressure so it spreads throughout the affected surfaces. Large enough cracks (about 1/2" wide or more) can be trowel filled from both sides. Obviously, a crack like this through poured concrete foundation is more of an indication of significant loads or settlement that one in block walls, which have quite weak mortar joints.


If you have high outside water level (permanent groundwater level is high or seasonally) then the best solution is excavating down and using a waterproof expanding cement grout like Thoroplug to seal the crack from the outside, then bitumastic sealer over that, and then crack filling with same crack filler or with plain portland cement grout from the inside to complete the crack repair.


Here are a couple of related previous questions with answers FYI:


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Basement waterproofing would be your normal Search the List category for a contractor. Major damage (cracking through solid blocks, offsets in the wall, affecting upstairs also, crack propogating over a short period of time) should normally be looked at by a Structural Engineer to be sure nothing majhor is going on. Many times, a surficial repair and injection is done from the inside first, going to the outside only if water infiltration is becoming a problem.



Answered 12 months ago by LCD




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