2019-11-25 Driveways- Concrete Flatwork Issues (Omaha Home Inspection)

Foundation damage from Street Creep

Concrete Block Foundation Pushed by Street Creep

Where do you look for Street Creep? This house had all of the signs. The expansion joints in the driveway were tight, the stone veneer around the garage door was pushed in on both sides, the back corners of the garage foundation were cracked, and the foundation wall in the basement behind the garage leaned. I climbed over a pile of storage, moved a few items out of my way, and found a good-sized foundation crack that wasn’t disclosed to my client from Street Creep.

What Repair Options Are There for Street Creep?

Correcting the Expansion Joint

When repairing damage from Street Creep, the most important is to relieve the pressure from the street. You will need to have a 3″ wide expansion joint cut across your driveway usually out near the street. The 3″ gap is filled in with a rubber filler piece or backer rod with expandable concrete caulk. Adding that expansion joint will absorb future movement from the street and prevent further foundation damage. Costs vary considerably depending on who you call. I’ve had clients hire it done for $800 all the way up to $2,000. With prices rising, it could be more.

Repairing the Driveway or Garage Floor

Repairing stone or brick veneer that has been pushed in an inch or so is purely cosmetic. That repair doesn’t need to be made. If the driveway or garage floor has been up heaved, rammed downward, or cracked to the point they are trip hazards, then you’ll need to have a Concrete Contractor repair or replace those panels depending on what damage there is. Mud jacking may be an option if the panels have settled. Otherwise, the damaged panels will most likely need replacing.

Repairing the Foundation

If the foundation was pushed outward 1/2″ or less, the wall doesn’t need to be straightened. Simply, seal the cracks to prevent water penetration. If the foundation was pushed more than that, then general rule of thumb is that the wall needs to be stabilized. You have 3 common options:

Wall Anchors– This option will potentially allow you to move the wall back to plumb. It requires 2′ – 3′ squares to be cut in the garage floor approximately 10′ out from the foundation wall so plates can be installed that the long bolts have something to attach to and grab resistance when the nut is tightened. This is the most expensive option, but is easier to finish over than the vertical steel beams.

Vertical Steel Beams – This option will stabilize the foundation, but does not bring it back to plumb. They will anchor the bottom of the beam to the basement concrete floor, then lean the vertical steel beam up against the foundation, and secure it with bolts and blocking to the floor joists. This options is the lowest cost and for an unfinished space makes perfect sense. You can also use these for a finished space, but you’ll need to have your stud wall with drywall set back away from the foundation a little more than the thickness of the beam.

Carbon Fiber Strapping – This option will stabilize the foundation and give you a very thin, strong profile enabling you to easily finish over the foundation wall. This won’t bring the wall back to plumb, but is a great option. I believe the pricing for carbon fiber repairs is more than the vertical steel beams, but less than the wall anchors, but you can call the Foundation Repair Contractors for pricing.