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foundation report 2300 Granadadoc - Austin TX Home Inspection

By Pedro Butler,2014-05-06 02:15
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foundation report 2300 Granadadoc - Austin TX Home Inspection

June 8, 2009

Per the owners request, a slab on grade foundation check was conducted on the home property at 2300

    Granada, Austin TX. This request was prompted by concerns for possible foundation issues of settlement

    and cracks. This is a foundation check only and does not take the place of a full home inspection report

    as it only addresses the foundation of the home. No baseline foundation elevation report was available at

    time of this inspection to verify how the foundation was performing when new or after any repairs.

This foundation is NOT currently performing as intended and has had significant movement.

    A laser / digital ZIP level check of the foundation showed an approximate deviation of 8” from the front

    to the rear of the home. With readings taken from the approximate center of the home the outside corner

    of the front bedroom facing the street showed a +3.1 reading while the far outside corner of the back

    bedroom had a reading of 4.8. There is a crack noted at the exterior foundation grade beam along the north side of the home. Interior wall cracks were noted at the living room and bedroom walls and ceilings.

    All visible attic framing was noted to be intact with no signs of separation and no visible evidence of

    flooding or leaking pipes was noted at the time of this inspection.

Recommended repairs:

It is highly recommended that a State licensed Professional Engineer or certified foundation repair

    company be consulted to design a plan of repair for this home as significant foundation movement has

    occurred. Normal foundation movement typically exceeds no more that 1 ?” deviation. This home

    shows up to approximately 8” of movement.

As with any significant foundation movement / settlement there may be unseen damage at the under home

    plumbing drain lines. It is highly recommended that a State licensed Plumber be consulted to provide a

    pressure test of the drains to determine if damage has occurred as a result of the foundation movement.

Please note that this was a visual inspection only and that no soil sampling, destructive testing, or

    removal of wall or flooring sections was accomplished. This is a report of first impression of what was

    visible and available at the time of inspection only. An opinion on the overall future performance of the

    foundation cannot feasibly be made on a one-time examination of the structure. Inspectors cannot

    predict the possibility or potential for future foundation movement or damage. Texas soils are deemed to

    be unstable and may cause foundation movement or damage at any time.

Note: Some engineers and foundation repair companies may disagree over needed repairs as foundation

    movement, or failure, is a highly debatable issue. However, State inspectors have only two reportable

    options; Performing or NOT performing as intended. Repairs are solely at the discretion of the parties

    involved.

    Austin Structural Inspection Services

    Phone: 512.751.5199 Fax: 512.294.2055

    Email: larson@austinstructural.com

    www.austinstructural.com

    Soils throughout Central Texas

Most of the soil structures in this area are better suited to crop production than to urban development.

    The problem is in the shrink/swell potential. For the most part the area's soils tend to shrink when dry and

    swell when wet. This requires engineers to design structures that will remain stable while being supported

    by a constantly moving base. This movement is considerable in much of the area. Without going into

    great detail, let us just say that a stable soil has a PI (plasticity index) reading of 12-15. Most of the

    Central Texas soils weigh in at about 25-30.

Now, that brings us to the foundations of our homes. There are basically two configurations of

    foundations in the Central Texas area: slab on grade and pier and beam. The majority of houses built

    since the early 60's have been of the slab on grade type. Sometimes referred to as a "floating" slab, these

    are essentially large slabs of steel-reinforced concrete sitting atop the undulating soils of the region.

    It is a credit to the engineers that most house foundations perform fairly well here. But, no matter how

    well a house foundation is engineered and constructed, if the homeowner does not properly maintain it, it

    will almost certainly develop problems over time.

Foundation Care and Maintenance

Preventing a problem is always more desirable than having to cure one. Certain maintenance procedures

    can help prevent or arrest foundation problems if initiated at the proper time and carried out diligently.

    The following are suggestions that help encourage foundation stability.

Watering

In dry periods, summer or winter, water the soil adjacent to the foundation to help maintain constant

    moisture. Proper watering is the key. All foundation watering measures should be monitored by a State

    Licensed Professional Engineer or a certified foundation repair company. Serious foundation problems

    can occur if the soils are improperly watered.

When cracks appear between the soil and foundation, the soil moisture is low and watering is in order. On

    the other hand, water should not be allowed to stand in pools against the foundation. Watering should be

    uniform and preferably should cover long areas at each setting, ideally 50 to 100 lin. ft. Too little

    moisture causes the soil to shrink and the foundation to settle. Too much water - an excessive moisture

    differential can cause the soil to swell and heave the foundation. Along these lines never attempt to water the foundation with a root feeder or by placing a running garden hose adjacent to the beam.

    Sprinkler systems often create a sense of "false security" because the shrub heads, normally in close

    proximity to the perimeter beam, are set to spray away from the structure. The design can be altered to put

    water at the perimeter and thereby serve the purpose quite adequately. The use of a soaker hose is

    normally the best solution. From previous studies of infiltration and runoff it became evident that

    watering must be close to the foundation, within 6 to 18 inches, and excessive watering can be prevented

    by proper grade around the foundation.

Invoice:

$150.00 (paid VISA). Mail payment to: Kenneth Larson 3115 Sesbania Dr. Austin, TX 78748

    The report was provided by Kenneth Larson; a State Licensed Professional Real Estate Inspector (TREC #5702).

    Austin Structural Inspection Services

    Phone: 512.751.5199 Fax: 512.294.2055

    Email: larson@austinstructural.com

    www.austinstructural.com

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