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House brick damaged, repair help needed
#300451 04/05/10 07:26 PM
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Just before winter, I had to get my two best friends (who are landscapers) to repair the interlocking stone at my front door. Upon removing the stones, they found out that the brick from under my front door had been totally chiseled out, and the wood from my foundation is open to the elements.

The previous homeowners had a poured concrete walkway, and whoever installed it, removed the house brick so the concrete walkway would come right up to the foundation of the house. Yes, I know this doesn't make any sense and is completely ridiculous.

When my best friend redid my walkway with interlocking stone, he, nor anyone else for that matter, mentioned anything after the old concrete walkway was removed; which is kind of frustrating, but such is the past.

It was causing a leak into my basement, but that is remedied as I tore down that basement wall and insulated it leaving a small gap between the installation and foundation, thus allowing the water coming in and down the foundation to dry.

Okay, enough rambling on. Does anyone know how this should be properly repaired? I'm obviously going to get a professional, I just like to know what should be done before they tell me.

Your input is greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Cam















The picture above and below show the exposed wood.




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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Ya_basta #300458 04/05/10 07:52 PM
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Sorry to hear about your problem, Cam. Take this with a grain of salt because I'm no expert about this sort of thing....I would brick the bottom back in to the way it was initially before the interlocking was installed...BUT!...to do the job right, I'm thinking you may need to remove the threshold of the doorway so that once the brickwork is finished, you can run a couple of beads of caulk on top of the brick to the underside of the threshold and seal the elements out.


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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Adrian #300474 04/05/10 10:31 PM
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To do it right, you should definitely remove the threshold and put in a waterproof membrane like ice and water shield (the peel and stick stuff that goes on the roof under shingles). You might be able to get it out by running a reciprocating saw under it to cut the fasteners, but from the pictures it looks like the entire door may have to come out. It should go under the threshold, down the vertical face, horizontally on the foundation and then down again at least an inch. Turn out the 2 sides so nothing runs behind the adjacent brick. Then you can patch the brick back in, or use some pressure treated wood if it will all be hidden by the walk. Put a couple of generous beads of caulk under the threshold.

There's really nothing inherently wrong with running a concrete walk right up to the sill if it's pitched away from the house and sealed with some waterproofing flashing. The concrete should not be poured directly against the wood unless it's pressure treated.


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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Joe_in_SC #300480 04/05/10 11:24 PM
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Cam, you may have to outfit your chair will all sorts of lifts and tools! ;\)
Good luck. It is annoying that you were told so late.


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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
EFalardeau #300510 04/06/10 02:56 AM
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I would def. Make sure that whatever repairs are made an effort is made to keep water from having an easy path down to your foundation.


-David
Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
terzaghi #300543 04/06/10 02:28 PM
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Thanks for the information guys. Having to remove the door is the last thing I wanted to hear, as I didn't need this to be an expensive repair.

Joe, you mentioned about using pressure treated wood instead of brick because it will be covered by the walkway. Wouldn't the brick add an insulating factor to the house that pressure treated wood wouldn't? What are your thoughts on using extruded polystyrene insulation instead, then seal it off with lots of caulk?


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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Ya_basta #300552 04/06/10 03:27 PM
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I'm pretty sure that wood is a far better insulator than brick is, but my preference would still be the brick for durability.


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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Adrian #300576 04/06/10 05:05 PM
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Cam – is there a reason why you have wood at grade level? Has there been landscaping done where fill was brought in? I’m not sure what you have for building code, but just about everywhere I have built, code requires that the foundation (concrete - or pressure treated wood in some areas) extend a minimum of 6” above grade. The problems you’re having is why this code is in effect. If I were bidding this ‘repair’, I would need to know more about what’s going on, what was done and why. I would have to excavate under the door and to the right / left about 12” or so to see what the heck the builder did. I would then use a combination of water shield and mastic to seal the exposed area, then I would grout over that up to the door threshold. After the gout has set, I’d run the pavers up to and under the threshold. That would be roughly one day’s work.

You shouldn’t have to remove the door unless the leading edge of the actual door frame is unsupported. If the builder did things correctly, he/she would have put liberal amounts of caulking under the threshold to seal it to the seal plate. The pictures look like the threshold is a scabbed on chunk of aluminum with a bunch of caulking slobbered all over the place. You may be able to just yank that off without removing the door. Whatever you have there, that leading edge needs to be supported by something, whether it be the pavers or a board screwed to the foundation.

Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
michael_d #300588 04/06/10 05:52 PM
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Michael, thanks for the response. When I had the old concrete walkway removed, I had the entire front of the house excavated because the concrete was poured very deep and they threw in all kinds of rocks etc. It looked like it was a Friday job and they were getting rid of the leftover stuff they had excavated previously; t was really unbelievable what they did. We couldn't cut through the concrete with a concrete saw, or get anywhere with an electric jackhammer. I had to have someone come in with a jackhammer on the back of the backhoe, then lift it out in sections. The people that did the excavating for me said that they've never seen anything like it.

Everything else is okay (wish I still had pictures of the excavation), it's just underneath the door that is the concern.

Here are two pictures to give you an idea of the before and after. You will have to excuse the quality of the second picture, it's taken from "Google images".

Before-



After-



Hope that helps,
Cam

Last edited by wheelz999; 04/06/10 05:56 PM.

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Re: House brick damaged, repair help needed
Ya_basta #300642 04/06/10 10:38 PM
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Looking at the pics again, I agree with Michael. If you haven't had a problem with water coming under the door threshold, then it's probably sealed well enough. His fix sounds very appropriate and relatively simple.

I wouldn't be terribly concerned about the insulating value of any material for that small area. Wood or grout will all be at least as good as the adjacent brick.


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