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Seasonal Cracks Problem

We live in a split-level Colonial house in suburbsn Philadelphia, which was built around 1965. For the past several years we have suffered from severe "Seasonal" wall and ceiling cracks. These range from "closed" in September to as much as 3/16" open in March/April. We have tried all possible approaches to remidiate this problem. We have tried a number of cosmetic drywall means, none of which have worked. We have had inspections and recommendations by a Construction engineer, Structional engineers and foundation contractors. We have spent more than $8,000 in recommended repairs (crawl space jacks, additional support "tripples", etc), but the problem is still there, just as bad. WE NEED MORE HELP! I have posted this with the TOH crew for consideration, but don't really expect to hear from them. Does anyone have any further suggestions?

Re: Seasonal Cracks Problem

It looks like all the recommended remedies failed, even after you have spent a mini fortune of 8K. Maybe it's time to accept the fact the structural repairs and modifications aren't going to fix your problem. Instead, concentrate on fixing the defects cosmetically, but use methods that will conceal them better.

1. For cracks narrower than 1/8" use elastomeric caulking and paint.

2. For wider cracks, but no wider than 3/16", use mesh, mud, elastomeric paint.

Re: Seasonal Cracks Problem

Thanks for the reply. The worse crack I have is about 5 feet long, and in the winter, opens up linearely from 0 to about 3/16". I have tried DAP "ElastoPatch" as well as "Good-By Cracks", which is a spray-on elastic, both made for recurring cracks. Not much luck a few years ago with these, but I will try again. I have been concentrating on trying to repair the cause all this time, but maybe you are right to suggest that I concentrate on cosmetic fixes. (I did not know about elastometric paint - I'll look onto it - hope I can match the existing paint). Thanks again, Ray

Re: Seasonal Cracks Problem

Do a search for truss lift, that may be your problem. There are multiple ways to fix that.


Re: Seasonal Cracks Problem

Good suggestion, Jack. But the cracks are on the second level of the 4-level Split-level house, and there are no indications of cracks on the 3rd and 4th levels. Guess it could be possible to transfer a truss lift stress thru a floor level to a lower level, but unlikely. I will, however, check the upper floor more carefully for cracks or obvious stress.

Thanks, Ray

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