Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
In the small amount of time that it took to actually jack up the foundation, the vast marjority of those problems either disappeared or diminished. You have to see it so I'm posting some before and after pics. I hope that helps you to see what a difference this dusty, dirty, noisy process made.
There are still a lot of cracks to patch, but they are closed cracks. I've been told to wait about 60 days to do any patching which is fine with me. It will be cool weather and much better for patching and painting.
I hope everyone has learned something about foundation problems in Houston and the great work that can be done to fix them.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Finally, the work is done!
Tomorrow I'll post the "after" pics. Really amazing stuff!!
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
The first thing they have to do to dig the holes is to jackhammer away the concrete. That was the most fun (not) of the whole deal. Luckily the workers knew what they were doing and got the job done pretty quickly. And there wasn't nearly as much dust generated as I had expected. I had put a new filter in the A/C and had to change it again the next day when they were finished. Wow!
After opening up the concrete, they have to dig the holes by hand. Yes, by hand!!! And once they got past the top layer, the soil was very hard and it took them a long, long time to get it all dug out. Of course on a couple of the holes they had to go in two directions for the two piers. They did get a couple of other crews out there late in the day, but it was too crowded for them to help out much.
So the day ended with deep holes in the kitchen, bedroom and hall that they covered with big pieces of plywood so I wouldn't fall into one and break my leg as I was told another customer had done.
This is in the kitchen where they are breaking up the concrete.
This is in the bedroom showing one of the plywood sheets they use to cover the holes.
You can see in the pictures that they covered the walls and cabinets with brown paper to protect them. It seemed to work as the only mishap was a bit of mud on the dryer where they were coming in and out of the door from the kitchen to the garage. No holes in the wall, no dings on the doors. And it was tight with those wheelbarrows!! And they covered the kitchen floor with heavy plastic sheets and only cut out where they needed to dig.
Tomorrow - the real work. I'll post pictures of the workers down in those holes driving the piers. Really cool!
Monday, September 7, 2009
First I have to explain that the soil in the Houston area moves around a lot. If we were on rock, we would have earthquakes. We also have soil that swells when it gets wet and shrinks when it's hot and dry. The last is what happened to my house. Oh, and almost everyone here has a slab foundation. A few years ago, piers were placed around the front 3/4 of my house as the foundation was beginning to tilt forward. Because of the extreme dry and hot weather we've had this summer, the soil under the middle of the house began to shrink and the middle of my house began to sink. There was as much as a 4" difference in elevation between the highest and lowest part of my house. Yeah! The caused cracks in the sheetrock. doors that wouldn't close all the way or wouldn't stay closed. The worst part was the gap between the bottom of the wall and the floor in some places and the same gap between the top of the wall and the ceiling in others.
Today I'm posting some pictures of some of the problem areas.
Bedroom closet door - you could see the light from the closet through the crack which was on both sides of the wall! And that was as closed as the door would get.
Door from dining room into kitchen - on the other side there was a gap between the top of the wall and the ceiling.
Wall between kitchen and garage - notice gap at top of wall and cracks around door.
Tomorrow I'll post pictures of the beginning of the process. Please let me know if you have any questions.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
I've done a once-over with the vacuum and replaced some of the flooring. The crew was able to get the hall flooring up in one big piece. The bedroom, however, will be like a jigsaw puzzle. I've done a few small repairs. One baseboard in the bedroom got popped off when some debris that was under the wall got pushed out. That's been fixed. I also got the folding door between the kitchen and dining room back on track. Also got one strike plate reset, but have a couple more to do. Still lots of stuff to do like caulking and patching, but that needs to wait about 60 days for everything to settle. No problem!!! Actually, once I get the flooring relaid in the bedroom, the only real evidence of the work will be the two concrete patches in the kitchen surrounded by neatly cut out linoleum. Maybe the look will catch on with the HGTV set?
I'll be working on pictures today and hope to start posting them by tomorrow with a full documentation of the process. Meanwhile, I want to thank all those who sent messages of support while I was enduring this process. It really means a lot to me to know that my cyberfriends are there for me.
Friday, September 4, 2009
To compound things, my refrigerator went out on Wednesday. I ran out to Sears and purchased a new one which will be delivered today. Hopefully they will be able to get in the kitchen to hook it up. I thought the foundation crew would be done yesterday, but . . .
I'll be back with lots of pictures as I wanted to document this process. It's interesting and lots of very hard, physical work for the crew.