Interesting Foundation

I inspected a newly renovated home for a client who was complaining about many,many issues. When I got to the detached garage, I found the garage had been built on the ‘foundation’ system seen in the attached photos.

My understanding from the owner is the GC set 6x6’s vertically in holes and filled the holes with cement in ‘pole barn’ fashion. The vertical 6x6’s extend up to the top plate of the 1st floor walls. Horizontal 6x6’s were then installed between the vertical units as seen in the photos. Gravel was then installed between these foundation ‘walls’ followed by pouring 6 inches of concrete on top of the gravel with the concrete extending over the top horizontal 6x6. At the time of the inspection there was no way to tell if the concrete had been poured as a monolithic slab with thicker perimeter concrete, or whether the concrete is simply a 6" slab.

I’ve seen many monolithic slabs, floating slabs, and footer/foundations, but never this system. I’m wondering if anyone has…Personally, I think this is FUBAR (as was the house).

Thanks in advance for any comments

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I’ve never been a fan of wood below grade.

Hopefully it rots at the same rate around the slab it just be a little sloped and shorter

It’s an open invitation for termites. It may be possible, costing time and $$, to cut the posts off and replace the lower sections of 6X6 with a concrete foundation, but it’s just a temporary structure as is.

John Kogel

Backwoods engineering at its finest. I’m not very far from there, and I have seen many such atrocities from the “builders” who resisted the adoption of building codes and are now resisting licensing.

Although, the idea of state licensing in a state as large as Pennsylvania isn’t licensing at all, it’s just another form of taxation.

Did this thing get approved? The wood would have to be wood foundation quality, and be properly treated, and/or isolated from the soils. Remember no contact with the soil. Even wood foundation is isolated. It even looks like the dirt is comming out of the bottom of the foundation. Why didnt they just excavate to grade? Appears like more work, and cost to do this. Good luck with this!

Yes, gravel is beginning to migrate out from underneath. Obviously it is only a matter of time before the concrete begins to settle. This will be an expensive fix for sure. The garage and main dwelling are located in Clinton Co., PA. Very rural. IBC was adopted by the local municipality in 2004, however there is no local code official. The owner is not aware of any permits being issued. GC advertises locally as being in business over 30 yrs…

No licenses in PA for those in the trades, but you better be licensed to be an HI…gotta love it.

Nice Scott very nice and no I will not travle to Clinton Co.

travel sorry

I have seen wood systems in oregon and they are usually done by the homeowner. Here is a link

Hell, your lucky if you can get Frank to drive more than 15 min from his house! :mrgreen:

Hell of a foundation Scott… hope they know a good foundation guy!

Hahahahahaahah too funny…how far do I drive to those pocono meetings???

How far does Scott drive??? :mrgreen::twisted:

Easy you 2…

I’ll bring the thermographic scans for this inspection to the meeting next week. You’ll get a kick out of them. This is going to end up in court.

Chris…this is not the best place to ask this but…I got a monoxor II on
ebay and it seems to work fine, however it is noisy! Is this normal?

low blow