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Hi. I have an old farmhouse built in the 1890s that needs much work. I want to start with a solid foundation but need some help. One of the cross-beams in the crawl space between stone/brick pillars has been damaged by termites and powder post beetles. Bug problem is solved, but the beam is now propped up with posts and jacks. What kind of professional do I need to replace the beam and make sure the pillars are solid? Thanks

Re: Foundation

A general contractor or a rough framing carpenter.

Re: Foundation

You may have killed the current pests, but you need to make sure they don't come back and for that, the beam needs to be treated with a sodium borate solution. You can do this yourself, google for Boracare or Timbor for sources and directions. If you use the Boracare, you will only need a garden sprayer, if you go with the Timbor, a camp stove and an old large kettle or pot will also be needed.

If there is still some ledge left on your pillars, you can sister the old beam instead of replacing it. If the remaining ledge is small, you may need to sister it with steel plates instead of wood. There are other options depending on the condition of the existing beam and your needs that can be discussed with a general contractor or framer.

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