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macekti
Underpinning Foundation

We currently have a short basement (5 1/2 height) and are talking to a contractor, architect and structural engineer about digging it out and underpinning the foundation. The foundation is a 100 year old rubble stone foundation on top of clay soil. We are also having a 10 foot section of the foundation replaced so we can reduce the width of the foundation wall from 18 inches to 8 inches to make way for a staircase. Does anyone have suggestions of things to watch out for during this project? Have you had this work done or done it yourself and there were problems that popped up during or after construction? Leaks between new and old foundation? Mistakes made during construction?

Re: Underpinning Foundation

Your best bet is to continue talking to your contractor. Generally, it seems to me that you'd want to carefully remove sections of the rubble foundation, and replace them with poured concrete, but the people onsite who can actually see the condition of your foundation are going to be able to comment on the proper way to replace it or shore it up. Even pictures of your foundation aren't really going to help, it takes a hands-on physical look at it to see what can be done to replace it without risking damage to the house. They may recommend replacing the entire rubble foundation, or they may note that they can patch in properly supported concrete in specific areas (with clay soil, this may take some really deep digging to get a good base for the concrete).

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