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Littlechime
Floor Problems

How do you fix a severely bowed floor? We want to preserve the present floorboards if possible (they are original to the house). Sorry, I know this seems general, but we have no idea where to start so any help would be great!

dj1
Re: Floor Problems

First you have to detrmine what's causing the floor to bow. Then find a way to fix it.

Get opinions from a few contractors. We can't see why it's bowed.

Littlechime
Re: Floor Problems

Can a general contractor tell just by looking at it? Sorry to sound stupid...our experience with general contractors at a previous home was not good.

keith3267
Re: Floor Problems

There are many things that can lead to the floors being bowed. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of question that you are likely to get a satisfactory answer over the internet. While there are plenty of qualified people here that could determine the problem and the best solution, it requires that they lay eyes on the problem. That is the reason you should call several contractors and get several opinions and estimates from. Be sure to do due diligence on any contractors that you might employ. That is, talk with former customers of theirs.

keith3267
Re: Floor Problems

There are many things that can lead to the floors being bowed. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of question that you are likely to get a satisfactory answer over the internet. While there are plenty of qualified people here that could determine the problem and the best solution, it requires that they lay eyes on the problem.

That is the reason you should call several contractors and get several opinions and estimates from. Be sure to do due diligence on any contractors that you might employ. That is, talk with former customers of theirs.

keith3267
Re: Floor Problems

There are many things that can lead to the floors being bowed. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of question that you are likely to get a satisfactory answer over the internet. While there are plenty of qualified people here that could determine the problem and the best solution, it requires that they lay eyes on the problem.

keith3267
Re: Floor Problems
Littlechime wrote:

Can a general contractor tell just by looking at it? Sorry to sound stupid...our experience with general contractors at a previous home was not good.

If he just stands in the middle of the room and says he knows what the problem is, then I would be distrustful. If he gets under the house and examines the problem, then yes. To get any kind of a valid suggestion from us, we will need to know the following.

First or second floor?

Basement or crawl space or slab?

Is the floor sagging in the middle or bowed up in the middle?

Is the bow/sag in the middle or more to one side or corner of the room?

This is not a complete list of questions, but it would help to narrow down which additional questions might need to be asked and answered.

keith3267
Re: Floor Problems

There are many things that can lead to the floors being bowed. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of question that you are likely to get a satisfactory answer over the internet. While there are plenty of qualified people here that could determine the problem and the best solution, it requires that they lay eyes on the problem.

Littlechime
Re: Floor Problems
keith3267 wrote:

If he just stands in the middle of the room and says he knows what the problem is, then I would be distrustful. If he gets under the house and examines the problem, then yes. To get any kind of a valid suggestion from us, we will need to know the following.

First or second floor?

Basement or crawl space or slab?

Is the floor sagging in the middle or bowed up in the middle?

Is the bow/sag in the middle or more to one side or corner of the room?

This is not a complete list of questions, but it would help to narrow down which additional questions might need to be asked and answered.

It's a second floor room over a basement. It sags in the middle towards an old fireplace (converted to a crawlway for the underground railroad and more recently, covered over with some kind of plywood or wallboard). The whole room makes almost a bowl that curves more to the fireplace than the exact center. The other second floor bedroom has the same problem but it's not as severe and the bowl is more centered in the room.

Thanks for your help! We just don't know what to ask any contractor that might come in. We know to check references etc., but with a house this old, it seems that someone with specialized knowledge would be the best to repair it.

dj1
Re: Floor Problems

You have a framing issue, so go ahead and invite a few experienced framing contractors/general contractors to look and estimate. They will know what to look for, you don't have to tell them what to look at.

The causes are unknown at this point, but once the joists are rebuilt, replaced or beefed up, you should have a nice flat floor.

Littlechime
Re: Floor Problems
dj1 wrote:

You have a framing issue, so go ahead and invite a few experienced framing contractors/general contractors to look and estimate. They will know what to look for, you don't have to tell them what to look at.

The causes are unknown at this point, but once the joists are rebuilt, replaced or beefed up, you should have a nice flat floor.

Is there any possibility of saving the original floor boards or is it just standard that they will need to be replaced? Maybe it's something that is decided based on the amount of bowing?

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