Basement Wall Stress Cracks

Here is a graphic showing the typical cracks found in a concrete foundation due to external soil pressure.


Thanks again, Randy. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Great illusions, Randy.

If the sketches are correct there could be 2 different problems . The first is that i don’t see any footing drains at the concrete footing elevation to drain water from the exterior soil and consequently re leave pressure against the foundation . Second problem may have to do with the way the foundation concrete wall was constructed . Depending on the wall length It could be undersized , May be 8" thick but should have been 10" or 12" . There may be no rebars or not enough rebars horizontally and vertically to strengthen the wall . It is a tough call not knowing the specifications from the engineer .

Franco, I intentionally left the footing drain out. Basement wall shoving can be cause by a lack or drainage or clogged drainage. It can also be associated with improper soil used to backfill or a combination of poor soil and poor drainage. The cause of the cracking depicted in the graphic typically falls under an engineering problem. The graphic was intended to alert home inspectors to the crack pattern associated with wall shoving, which would indicate the need for further investigation like checking the basement wall in the middle for inward tilt with a level or plumb bob. The fact the wall moved indicates the wall is undersized or under reinforced for the applied pressure. Regardless of the cause the solution is beyond the scope of the SOP for home inspectors. I want home inspectors to look for this crack pattern and report any visible or measurable wall tilt and pass it on for further investigation.


Bingo. Nice graphic and helpful.

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Understand , i was only giving my opinion for us all to read because i corrected these kind of problems as a contractor . I would never go into details to a customer as a home inspector .

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