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Question DetailsAsked on 5/21/2017

my add on den is starting to separate from the house. looking for a repairman or company Tulsa Ok

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2 Answers


Assuming you are talking a smallish crack, typically tight at the bottom (foundation level) and wider as you go higher on the wall, this is commonly caused by the new addition foundation settling relative to the house, which has already (over the years) done most of the settlement it is going to do. More common with slab-on-grade construction than deeper foundations.

Should not happen beyond perhaps just minor interior wallcracking (and maybe narrow exterior cracking on brick or stone exteriors), but most contractors do not compact the foundation area well before placing it, especially with slabs on grade where it is commonly reraked and levelled after any compaction, leaving loose soil for the foundation to settle into over time.

Damage is usually non-structural, especially with stud frame houses, which are real tolerant of foundation movement, and except with rigid (brock, stone, concrete, stucco) exteriors commonly does not reflect through to the outside, or perhaps only as a sligh creasing or warping of the siding and rarely the roofing shingles.

Many times, assuming just a crack not more than 1/4" or so wide at the top, unless it is growing noticeably or you are seeing significant vertical offset, just patching with spackle and touching up the painting every few years for the first 10-15 years handles it. You will commonly also get a flooring offset of a small fraction of an inch at the interface between the two foundations.

If you are seeing significant offsets (more than 1/4" or so wide cracking, tilting of walls, buckling or distortion of roofing, or more than a hair offset of the walls in or out relative to the otehr part of the house, then time to get a Strcutrual Engineer (for typically about $200-250 range) to look at it to determine if he feels it is structurally significant. Ditto if you have a crawlspace or basement and the foundation has a wide-open crack or offset, as opposed to just a hairline crack - or if the cracking is propogating through solid concrete foundation or though foundation blocks (as opposed to zig-zagging along the mortar joints).

Obviously, if quite new construction, if the addition is under warranty then that should cover the repair.

The "proper" solution for this - having an intentional structural disconnect at the addition, with interior and roofing transition strips and trim and waterproof membrane at the exterior (under the siding) to allow for up to maybe 1/2-1" movement at the connection point without visible effect. Interior cracking on drywall is typically handled by leaving a drywalljoint at the interface which can freely crack, and covering it with trim (like a doorframe, whether or not there is a door there) which is fastened at only one side of the interface so the drywall can crack open a bit without showing distress.

For the repair itself if not in to DIY'ing it - of course Roofer or Siding or Mason for that type of work, or commonly Handymen for drywall crack repair and paint touchup, also for putting in a deliberate drywall transition point (scribing a line to encourage the cracking to go straight up the wall and across the ceiling at the interface) and then putting in a wide trim frame to conceal it.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD



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Answered 3 years ago by Member Services

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