Tattletale Cracks - Fine Homebuilding
previous
  • Install an Outlet Box
    Install an Outlet Box
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Ultimate Deck Build 2015
    Ultimate Deck Build 2015
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • Vormax Toilet Sweepstakes
    Vormax Toilet Sweepstakes
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • Remodeling Articles
    Remodeling Articles
  • Radiant Heat Comparison
    Radiant Heat Comparison
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
next

CozyDigz

CozyDigz


Tattletale Cracks

comments (3) January 2nd, 2013 in Blogs
Olitch Mike Litchfield, Blogger, book author, one of the first FHB editors

The diagonal crack running out from the upper corner of this window suggests a header that is not adequately supported and, quite likely, foundation problems. A savvy home inspector will look for corrobrating evidence elsewhere.
Renovation 4th Edition 
This dramatic crack through a corner of the same building was caused by a drainage system that had been clogged for decades. Instead of runoff being routed away from the house, water collected at the foundation and eventually undermined its footings.
Renovation 4th Edition
Renovation 4th Edition contains the collective wisdom of hundreds of master builders and tradespeople across North America.
The diagonal crack running out from the upper corner of this window suggests a header that is not adequately supported and, quite likely, foundation problems. A savvy home inspector will look for corrobrating evidence elsewhere.
Renovation 4th Edition Click To Enlarge

The diagonal crack running out from the upper corner of this window suggests a header that is not adequately supported and, quite likely, foundation problems. A savvy home inspector will look for corrobrating evidence elsewhere.

Renovation 4th Edition 

Photo: Mike Litchfield

Stucco is strong and relatively maintenance free, but it will crack if a building shifts. Diagonal cracks running out from the upper corners of windows or doors may telegraph big trouble. Building loads often concentrate on a header--a load-bearing member over a door or window opening--and diagonal cracks may be a sign that the header is not adequately supported. In other words, the house's framing or foundation may be shifting. 

Inside the house, look for concomitant cracks in drywall or plaster at the corners of windows or exterior doors. In older homes, diagonal cracking may also occur over interior door frames where excessive point-loading above combines with inadequate support beneath. In such cases, it's also common for the head trim of the door to tilt down towards a failed support post or a too-small pad. 

 

This posting is excerpted from Renovation 4th Edition, just published by Taunton Press. R4's 614 pages include thousands of field-tested tips and techniques, 250+ technical illustrations, roughly 1,000 photos selected from the 40,000 I have taken over the years, and lifetimes of experience that builders have shared with me. I hope you find Renovation 4th Edition useful. -- Mike

© Michael Litchfield 2012



posted in: Blogs, , foundations, home inspection

Comments (3)

JeremyCoats JeremyCoats writes: nice project
Posted: 2:35 am on May 21st

KateMcKinney KateMcKinney writes: gud one
Posted: 1:40 am on May 19th

darrylchad darrylchad writes: nice 1
Posted: 3:27 am on May 12th

Log in or create a free account to post a comment.