Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile

Welcome to John Bridge / Tile Your World, the friendliest DIY Forum on the Internet


Advertiser Directory
JohnBridge.com Home
Buy John Bridge's Books

Go Back   Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile > Tile & Stone Forums > Tile Forum/Advice Board

Sponsors


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Unread 11-30-2019, 08:44 PM   #31
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
Yes, most definitely we have realized that the tile was installed incorrectly. I'm not surprised to hear that the thin set was incorrect. So frustrating! I'm hoping we can find someone to do it right when we get this foundation issue taken care of. Anyone have any recommendations for tile companies in the DFW area who have your knowledge?

Regarding the cracks.....
After a visit from my dad, I'm most definitely contacting our Structural warranty again and the structural engineer who made the report 1.5 years ago. Now that we have a tile removed, we think the foundation is very thin at the hollow parts, which stretch along a line through the entire house.
Although the tile workmanship looks to lack, we are thinking the tile is now the least of our worries. This is most certainly a foundation issue. The crack is now from one side of our house to the other with EVERY SINGLE TILE along the way cracked. The removal of the tiles have been eye opening, for sure.

Anyone know of a forum with foundation repair talk? That might be helpful until I can get someone out here to look at it. Just trying to educate myself.
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 11-30-2019, 10:31 PM   #32
cx
Moderator emeritus
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 90,234
Having looked up the Texas ASCE guidelines I see the "tilt" they refer to and it's what we would call out of level when pouring a foundation slab. Unless your recent engineer is actually comparing the identical measurements from a previous inspection to the current measurements and saying the entire foundation has not tilted more than an additional one percent, I'm at a loss for what he might be telling you.

As for the deflection, I've again gotta say that without very accurate measurements when the slab was initially cured, I don't see how the current engineer could determine from measurements how much actual deflection has occurred since then. And I'm a little confused by his figures in the portion of his report you've showed us. In section A-A, a distance of 610 inches, he calculates the allowable deflection of L/360 to be 1.76 inches, while in section B-B, the same distance of 610 inches, he calculates the allowable L/360 to be 1.87 inches. I calculate 610/360 to be 1.69 inches. At least one of those calculations must not be correct.

And the Evaluation Guidelines for performance we find:

Quote:
5.3 Performance
Performance considers the capability of the building to serve its intended purpose. Elements of concern are safety, function, durability, and habitability. Inadequate performance may result from inadequate strength or insufficient stiffness, and is shown in many ways.

3. Cracking of concrete foundation elements.

9. Cracking, buckling, or separating of floor coverings.
Both of which criteria are pretty clearly evident from your observations.

I'm unclear about what you hoped to gain by the engineering evaluation of your foundation in regard to your floor tile failure, but I think it's pretty clear that the cracking in your tile installation was caused at least in large part by the cracking of your concrete foundation.

Jim, I ruled out the ants gaining access through the thinset mortar under the tiles because of the swirling notch pattern. Even if Ms. Lana has certified Lewis and Clark ants in her area, I doubt they could have pioneered a route through those swirl lines to the interior of her floor. I'm sticking with their coming up through the slab from below.

Do you know if your foundation had piers drilled and poured before the foundation was poured?

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!

Last edited by cx; 11-30-2019 at 10:42 PM. Reason: Add question
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 02:05 PM   #33
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
I can't speak to his figures and incorrect math, but he did indeed have the report from the new build in 2012 to compare his findings to in 2018.

Regarding your question on what I was hoping to gain by an evaluation from an engineer and tile cracking....
If our tile was cracking due to a foundation crack, we wanted to confirm it was not structural before our home warranty ran out and before we rushed to redo the entire house's flooring. The warranty company sent over the 3rd party engineer. So, we were just taking the appropriate steps we needed to take.
We moved on after they told us our house was structurally sound and were able to rest a little better at night until this last summer the remaining tile cracked and got us puzzled again.
It wasn't until we pulled up this tile the other day, that we are realizing the tile issue isn't due to a "normal hairline foundation crack".

Here are a couple of photos that I just took today. These are the corresponding cracks on our foundation from one side of the house to the other. Looks to be all the way through the foundation on both sides (and completely through our tile inside the house.) The only idea we have of what the foundation looks like on the top, is the one tile we took out that you've seen (with the ants, hollow sounds and wide cracks)
Not sure what size of foundation problem we have, but certainly getting some more outside help! Hoping our warranty company (and engineer) will investigate a little more. I'd be completely lost if they said it was structurally sound again. It's obviously actively moving!

(FYI: the photo that has "patched" foundation was patched by the builder after I called them regarding "crumbling foundation" 5 years ago. They called it a "blow out"--which was cosmetic, they patched it and suggested a retaining wall at some point for washout. We've had several different professionals look at it and agree it was not a huge deal and a retaining wall would be fine, but not necessary. The foundation extends far below what we see, they said. BUT....Considering this "blow out" corresponds exactly with the crack splitting our house in half, I'm guessing we might have to relook at that "blow out".

Thanks everyone for your input! I know my "tile questions" on a tile forum quickly turned to more foundation repair issues. I wasn't sure what we were dealing with and I was REALLY hoping it was purely a tile issue stemming from poor installation and a normal hairline foundation crack. Doesn't sound like we're so lucky.
Attached Images
  
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 03:00 PM   #34
cx
Moderator emeritus
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 90,234
That's what I was afraid was going on, Lana. Have you gotten out your copy of your Homeowner's Warranty and read the part about SOG foundation issues? The wording I recall from years ago would likely indicate that what you currently have does not constitute a structural failure according to their contractual wording. I would hope to be wrong, but you should check that.

Again, were supporting concrete piers poured below your foundation before the actual foundation was poured? When I lived up there in your area that was a very common practice when houses were built by by conscientious building contractors, but avoided by the large tract-home builders and others trying to save every penny on the project.

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 03:46 PM   #35
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
I'm unsure of the the concrete piers. Honestly, I thought that was a given....but this builder most defintely took a lot of short cuts, so I wouldn't be surprised if they took this one too.
Our house was an inventory house. We were the first owners, but were not around for the build.

I have read through the wording of the warranty. Because I have no clue what we have going on, I have no idea what it would fall under or if that would be excluded.
You'd think since our house is actively splitting, it would be a structural defect
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 05:04 PM   #36
Davy
Moderator -- Mud Man
 
Davy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Princeton,Tx.- Dallas area
Posts: 32,655
Lana, it might be worth buying a level laser to periodically check the movement. If you were to place a laser on a permanent surface, say a countertop and was able to shoot the beam across the house then you could mark a door jamb and check it again a month or two later. Or, you could set it up outside and check the brick line periodically. Compare this month's marks to last month's to see the difference.

I live in North Texas too and my slab goes up and down with the seasons. From my experience, the perimeter of my house seems to move more than the middle, which makes sense.
__________________
Davy

www.davystephenstile.com
Davy is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 05:46 PM   #37
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
Hi Davy! Thats a great idea! I will most definitely do that, thanks. Although I'm not quiet sure what to do with the findings.
I'm really hoping to get something figured out before any more damage occurs.

In the Texas summer, our house is snapping everywhere (I actually thought someone shot a gun in the house at one point because the tile snapping was so loud). I understand that some movement is normal in North TX foundations, but enough movement to break through the entire thick foundation can't be normal, right? Even during a hot, dry Texas summer, that seems crazy.

What I found under those first 2 removed tiles, can't be the result from "normal" movement.
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 06:09 PM   #38
Davy
Moderator -- Mud Man
 
Davy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Princeton,Tx.- Dallas area
Posts: 32,655
I wouldn't think that's normal but I'm no expert on it.

Yeah, the info you gather would just tell you how much movement you have. Other than your own curiosity, don't know if it would be any more useful than that.

Usually, when they pour a slab, it's fairly level. A laser level would show you just how level your slab is.

I would look for a self leveling laser. They used to be expensive but are much more affordable these days.
__________________
Davy

www.davystephenstile.com
Davy is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 07:12 PM   #39
cx
Moderator emeritus
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 90,234
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lana
...but enough movement to break through the entire thick foundation can't be normal, right? Even during a hot, dry Texas summer, that seems crazy.
Crazy it might seem, Lana, but it's more common than you might think. Some areas up there are particularly bad and the use of piers was quite common to help prevent such damage. If you don't water your foundation during the frequent dry spells, you can indeed exceed the capabilities of your SOG foundation, 'specially the ones not designed for the actual local soil conditions and without piers.

I usta remind my customers down here to water their foundations when we'd hit our summer drought conditions. I would 'splain them that "You can get new grass or shrubs if necessary, but water your foundation!" I poured very good foundations, but even a couple of mine have had hairline cracks across the entire width. Nothing as bad as what you're looking at, but enough in one house to crack the Saltillo tile set in a 3/4" mud bed. Maintaining the moisture levels around your house is a real consideration.

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 08:02 PM   #40
jadnashua
Veteran DIYer- Schluterville Graduate

STAR Senior Contributor

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Nashua, NH
Posts: 13,777
How common are post-tensioned slabs in that area? Seems that might help some, but not an after the fact add-on.
__________________
Jim DeBruycker
Not a pro, multiple Schluter Workshops (Schluterville and 2013 and 2014 at Schluter Headquarters), Mapei Training 2014, Laticrete Workshop 2014, Custom Building Products Workshop 2015, and Longtime Forum Participant.
jadnashua is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 08:57 PM   #41
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
Watering of our foundation has certainly lacked, but has not been absent. We will definitely put more focus on this going forward.

Without knowing exactly what the problem is, does anyone have an idea what they would do to stabilize a crack like this throughout the entire house and address hollow cement throughout?
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 09:52 PM   #42
Kman
Moderator
 
Kman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NW Arkansas, Ozark Mountains
Posts: 11,459
For starters, you'd have to give up the idea of having tile anywhere along that crack.

If you have a section that's hollow, you could cut it back until you hit solid concrete, then replace the cutout, using rebar drilled into the sides of the hole to stabilize the patch.

But I wouldn't just do one part along the crack. I'd wait and check along the entire length of the crack and make sure I got everything replaced that was questionable.

And even then, I probably wouldn't do tile over it until I knew it was stable. You may need foundation work to stabilize everything.
__________________
Kevin

The top ten reasons to procrastinate:

1.
Kman is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 10:49 PM   #43
cx
Moderator emeritus
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 90,234
I can't imagine anyone doing anything at all with that foundation unless you're willing to pay out of pocket for the work, Lana. I doubt you're going to qualify for repairs under any kind of homeowners warranty, regardless what you may have been paying for such coverage.

One thing that someone is going to try to sell you at some point is "repairing" those cracks with some sort of epoxy. They'll tell you that their epoxy is stronger than your concrete, and they'll likely be correct about that. What they won't tell you is that all it's gonna do is fill the crack temporarily. A year from now you'll be able to look under whatever floor covering you then have and find a similar crack running parallel to the previous crack where the epoxy has pulled the concrete off one side or the other. I'd suggest you resign yourself to the fact that the cracks will always be with you, or at least with the house.

There are several methods used for stabilizing such foundations, some of which are effective if your soil will accommodate them or if someone drills deep enough to hit soils or bedrock that will. Not an inexpensive proposition in any case that I'm aware of. Well, as with tile work on this site, the cost can be decreased substantially if you're willing to DIY the project, but most folks are just not ready for any of that. Our friend Davy has done a bit of that on his own foundation and perhaps he can offer a recommendation.

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-01-2019, 11:25 PM   #44
Davy
Moderator -- Mud Man
 
Davy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Princeton,Tx.- Dallas area
Posts: 32,655
I agree with watering the foundation. If we get enough rain, I don't water mine much but during those real dry summers, to water it enough probably takes a hundred dollars a month in water. Even then, my foundation still moves some. When it's dry, it's hard to keep it wet enough because it's so dry even 4 and 5 ft and more out from the slab. And, I don't water my yard a whole lot in the summer, just enough to keep things alive.

As far as piers go, I've done more homework on it than anything else. I actually bought everything needed to push the concrete piers in the ground. Just to get a feel for it, I did dig down in my front yard and pushed piers under the edge of my slab in one spot. I didn't raise the slab any, I was mainly trying out the hydraulic pump and ram. I found that this isn't a job for an old man. Digging in this black dirt was tough.

I've since found what I think is a better system. It's where a hole is bored into the ground, then a bell tool is fastened to the machine to widen the hole at the bottom. The hole is about 12 ft deep and rebar and concrete is added. After it sets for a week, the house is jacked up and supported on top of the piers. I'll try to find a link to what I'm talking about.

Here's a link. Give me your opinions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YudDbWmLktg
__________________
Davy

www.davystephenstile.com

Last edited by Davy; 12-01-2019 at 11:31 PM. Reason: add link
Davy is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 12-02-2019, 11:38 AM   #45
Triplelandj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Fort Worth TX
Posts: 19
Kevin,

How long do you suggest we wait to see the movement before placing flooring back in? I'm thinking we need to at least see what happens during the summer, but our main sign of movement for the past 3 years has been the tile snapping.
Gosh, I don't think I could handle being floor-less for too long!

CX,
On one hand, its good that you think it won't be covered under structure warranty because maybe that means it's not a super huge fix or dangerous. However, what happens if we wait? Won't the house continue to split in half (up the walls and continue up the brick) until it's a major structural default? We have 3 years left on a 10-year "Major Structural Default".


At this point....I just want to know it can be fixed and not pop our flooring up again when it's time to lay more down, BUT ALSO be able to resale our house if ever we decide to. Can all foundation problems, like this, be stabilized indefinitely? OR is it more like: stabilize for now but once a problem, always a problem?
__________________
Lana
Triplelandj is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Stonetooling.com   Tile-Assn.com   National Gypsum Permabase


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Not a good month Houston Remodeler The Mud Box 49 01-04-2015 08:28 PM
Help! 6 month old tile needs redo? / Need suggestions on underlayment Jeff1414 Tile Forum/Advice Board 17 06-12-2006 05:32 PM
Pic of the Month John Bridge The Mud Box 15 01-05-2002 04:12 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:53 PM.


Sponsors

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2018 John Bridge & Associates, LLC