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Old 02-10-2020, 06:34 PM   #1
kumathebear
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Red face Foundation Problems?

Our kitchen, living room, dining room are all tiled (1100 sq feet.) The remainder of our 4BR home is carpeted. We have had some issues with tile getting loose, grout breaking so had several companies come out to bid replacing with carpet. BEST rep we have experienced so far thought the tile is coming up due to improper installation not treating the slab floor (before we bought) but also said it could be cracks from settling? From our research and his reinforcing comments, I realize a concrete slab IS "porus" so moisture is always potentially there.

We have NO cracks in walls or ceiling and from the several quotes, this company seems to be much more experienced with possible diagnostic theories/assumptions? NO evidence of a slab water leak but we are 3 lots up from the lake but on a higher elevation from lake front, so could it be foundation?

Just wondering if anyone has had this problem and what did you do to resolve it? Any other indicators that would point toward foundation issues?

Serious post here, both of us are retired and this will really cut into our retirement savings.
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Old 02-10-2020, 06:55 PM   #2
M16
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If you have foundation problems it seems like you would have cracks in your walls. Check closely in the top corners for even hairline cracks. Sticking doors and windows are usually a sign as well. Look around the slab on the outside for any cracks. If the tile was floated poorly it wouldn't be unusual to have problems with tiles coming loose and grout cracking. Good luck and hope it's not the slab settling.
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Old 02-10-2020, 06:57 PM   #3
Humper
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A Foundation company can determine how level your foundation is pretty quick with a laser system. Once they determine if you have an issue, they will recommend a solution(s). We used olshan and they lifted our low areas have placed several piers under the foundation. It’s not cheap, but they guarantee there work. Price will vary based upon your home’s issues. We noticed ours from hairline cracks in our tile.
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Old 02-10-2020, 06:59 PM   #4
RR 314
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Is the thinset still attached to the slab and separating from the tile or completely coming off the slab? Did any tile crack or just come loose? I know--questions--not answers.
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:02 PM   #5
kumathebear
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RR 314 View Post
Is the thinset still attached to the slab and separating from the tile or completely coming off the slab? Did any tile crack or just come loose? I know--questions--not answers.
The rep today pulled up a couple of tiles and the thinset only had a few pieces on the tile if any?
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:09 PM   #6
Hogmauler
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You can call Atlas or Olshan. They are the same company with different names. They will come out for free and check your home out. I used them on a home I was selling in Katy in 2007 and again on a home I sold in College Station. Both times they said that while I had settlement they recommended not doing anything because it wasn’t enough to worry about. The brick veneer had cracked on the first house and the second home had some sheet rock issues and door issues.
Point is they were not high pressure at all and we’re honest with me. That’s big in my book. Additionally they offered a lifetime transferable warranty. In 2015 my father in laws home was literally falling apart. I gave him the same advice. He used a no name company that came in and did what they do. The home started to move again within six months. He died in 2017 and the home continues to move.
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:10 PM   #7
RR 314
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Originally Posted by kumathebear View Post
The rep today pulled up a couple of tiles and the thinset only had a few pieces on the tile if any?
Take a deep breath. That could be good news (depending on perspective). Could be the person laying the tile didn't know what they were doing. Could have used a towel with small notches or wrong type of thinnest all together. A flooring/tile guy can likely assess the problem. Would likely have to redo tile, but better than foundation issues!
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RR 314 View Post
Take a deep breath. That could be good news (depending on perspective). Could be the person laying the tile didn't know what they were doing. Could have used a towel with small notches or wrong type of thinnest all together. A flooring/tile guy can likely assess the problem. Would likely have to redo tile, but better than foundation issues!
This ^^^ I would just have the tile person come out and bid replacement of the tile.
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:29 PM   #9
Johnny Dangerr
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Don

I have been there and done this twice.
The only sure fire way is to hire a structural engineer to come out and measure the foundations. {$600.00 ish}
The first time {15 years ago} told us what needed to be fixed and the foundation company we hired came to the same findings and we had it done.
Had a couple of cracks the last couple of years and the wife stomped and stomped until we brought in another independent engineer. {another $600.00}
He said it was normal and we were good. Fixed said cracks and been good for a while now.
HUGE HINT: If it has to be done do it the week between Christmas and New Year. The foundation companies will do it for cost to make their pay role on the worst week of the year....
Pressed piles only. Bells always fail.

I could go on and on. Do not fix anything inside of the house for a year. Give it time to settle.
You will probably lose all the pipes under the house at some point after the lift.
We were so bad it cost more to fix the inside cracks than the foundation job. Never again - it was a nightmare................

Last edited by Johnny Dangerr; 02-10-2020 at 07:35 PM.
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Old 02-10-2020, 07:39 PM   #10
Snowflake Killa
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Sounds like a bad install on the tile.

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Old 02-10-2020, 07:47 PM   #11
RR 314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RR 314 View Post
Take a deep breath. That could be good news (depending on perspective). Could be the person laying the tile didn't know what they were doing. Could have used a towel with small notches or wrong type of thinnest all together. A flooring/tile guy can likely assess the problem. Would likely have to redo tile, but better than foundation issues!
Obviously should say trowel and thinset. Dang auto correct. Although a towel may have been more effective than the wrong trowel.
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Old 02-10-2020, 08:38 PM   #12
tx_basser
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Had Foundation work done on our house back in 2007 due to a water leak. Had 9 drilled/poured concrete piers installed as that was the best method at the time. We had them adjusted about 8 years later under warranty as they needed about an 1" of adjustment.

We also hired an independent structural engineer on our own dime to give us a report so when foundation companies tells us something we could refer to "our" report if they wanted to short sell us only to have them come back later to try and sell more piers.

Good luck and nothing needs a quick resolution. Take your time and pick the company and associate repair carefully.
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Old 02-10-2020, 08:47 PM   #13
deerplanter
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Had a buddy that just went thru this, his tile would just pop up and got worse after Harvey. He replaced all the filler with vinyl planks, no more issues.
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Old 02-10-2020, 08:58 PM   #14
Lungbustr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Dangerr View Post
Don

I have been there and done this twice.
The only sure fire way is to hire a structural engineer to come out and measure the foundations. {$600.00 ish}
The first time {15 years ago} told us what needed to be fixed and the foundation company we hired came to the same findings and we had it done.
Had a couple of cracks the last couple of years and the wife stomped and stomped until we brought in another independent engineer. {another $600.00}
He said it was normal and we were good. Fixed said cracks and been good for a while now.
HUGE HINT: If it has to be done do it the week between Christmas and New Year. The foundation companies will do it for cost to make their pay role on the worst week of the year....
Pressed piles only. Bells always fail.

I could go on and on. Do not fix anything inside of the house for a year. Give it time to settle.
You will probably lose all the pipes under the house at some point after the lift.
We were so bad it cost more to fix the inside cracks than the foundation job. Never again - it was a nightmare................
Good advice.

Just from what you said it doesnt sound like the slab. But it could be early signs. Best to have it checked by a structural engineer.
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Old 02-11-2020, 07:47 AM   #15
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An engineer should cost you $400 or less. Often you can get a preliminary report for $350, which will include measurements, report, and repair recommendation if needed.

Foundation problems are easy to diagnose the majority of the time. Look for cracking in corners, crown molding, trim, above door frames. Walk around the outside perimeter and look for cracking in brick and in the slab foundation, take your time. A foundation with problems is easy to spot once you have seen a few. Often all of the signs will be in a specific area of the house, often where drainage on the outside of the house is poor.

Another option is use any laser level, they can be bought for $40 or less if you don't already have one. Set it up on a chair or something and point it so it projects across the inside of the house cover as much area as possible. Use a tape measure to measure the height of the laser beam right next to the level, then measure at multiple points around the room. Look for difference of 1" or more. Account for difference in carpet/tile height. To have tiles popping up you will likely see 1" or more elevation change across a standard living room size.

This gives you a rough idea of whether you have foundation problems or not. If you think you do, then hire it out to professional.
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Old 02-11-2020, 09:24 AM   #16
topduarte
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No issue imo. I had a few tiles come loose over the last few months. I installed these tiles over 20 years ago. Both of my area were near doors so it had to do with the slamming of doors over the years that caused the tiles to come loose.

Were yours near doors?
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Old 02-11-2020, 10:03 AM   #17
kumathebear
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I really appreciate all the responses! My wife could not sleep last night worrying about the floors. Like I said, no evidence of wall or ceiling separation and none of the doors or windows have issues.

Waiting for the bids on repair and replacement on the floors. Any more comments are also welcomed! THANKS everyone for your help!!
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Old 02-11-2020, 10:43 AM   #18
Texasboy_fitnes
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Ya it doesn’t sound like structure foundation issues... I had the same issue.
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Old 02-11-2020, 01:14 PM   #19
topduarte
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Most likely it is not imo
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Old 02-11-2020, 03:41 PM   #20
Budman68
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BTW, I just built our house and we used the weighted vinyl in several of the rooms and the results are great. No glue, you just lay it down. Not cheap, but its working great in high traffic and with dogs.
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Old 02-11-2020, 03:46 PM   #21
bakin7005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Humper View Post
A Foundation company can determine how level your foundation is pretty quick with a laser system. Once they determine if you have an issue, they will recommend a solution(s). We used olshan and they lifted our low areas have placed several piers under the foundation. Itís not cheap, but they guarantee there work. Price will vary based upon your homeís issues. We noticed ours from hairline cracks in our tile.
They don't use lasers anymore. All reputable companies use a hydrostatic altimeter. I only say this because I find the instrument fascinating. It uses barometric pressure to measure to a 1/10th of an inch.

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Old 02-15-2020, 06:38 PM   #22
kumathebear
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To update those who responded and the comments were a BIG help!

We've determined that foundation issues were not the problem but rather improper installation of the tile from previous owners. Not an issue as we have been here for several years before this "popped up, pun intended." It's on us and we are dealing with the repairs...has to be done.

The "REAL burn on our butt's," was dealing with several "reputable" carpet/floor companies getting bids, having to call and ask when the bids would get to us as "some" did not deliver what they promised? Then learning that some of the carpet bids were using discontinued lines, but not represented that way in their bids.

So, finally awarded the repairs to the "oldest" company in our geography and at a price just $300 more than the lowest bid we were "almost sold on?!"

The real point of this is that I ALWAYS did my best to meet deadlines in business and if I missed something, I ALWAYS would contact customers in the same day/period to make sure they knew I valued their business. When I got back into real estate/land sales this was what I valued with my OCD personality...do what you say you are going to do and if it does not meet the timeline promised....LET US/THEM KNOW!!

Not surprised, professionalism is a mind set and NOT just something your promise!

Just a "little rant," but here we go getting the problem fixed. Thanks all once again!!
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Old 02-15-2020, 06:51 PM   #23
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What are they charging to tile the 1100 sf if you don't mind sharing that info ?
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Old 02-15-2020, 09:20 PM   #24
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What are they charging to tile the 1100 sf if you don't mind sharing that info ?
It looks like he is putting carpet down.
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Old 02-16-2020, 05:50 PM   #25
kumathebear
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Quote:
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What are they charging to tile the 1100 sf if you don't mind sharing that info ?
Sorry for the delay in responding.

*We decided to only retile in the kitchen and adjoining hall way to the isolated master. The tile we decided on is 18x18 so that came out to 175.50 sf @$5.99 sf which also includes the installation/grouting, etc.

*Actual old tile being taken up was 1042 sf @$2.00/sf. We got this same bid on every bid submitted to take up and dispose of the old tile. It's a job getting up the adhesive, done improperly before which caused the problem, and make it ready for the tile and carpet.

It's NOT $$ we want to spend in our retirement years, but we have a BIG mess now and want it done right. The company we decided on was actually just under $500 more than the closest bid but we just felt better based on their reputation and expertise vs competition. They have also been in business in our area for over 30 years and we used them before to install wood flooring at our old ranch house about 8 years past.

**Side note...the carpet quoted by another company we were going with, pet proof/etc., found out the product they were putting down had been discontinued?? Never told this so that added to our hesitation to go with them?! It's been a TOTAL PAIN in the A&^, but it is what it is and anxious to get this done.
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