Got asked to inspect a 4 story storefront and 2 unit condo (upper unit duplexed) that was built in 2005. Of course, the back and sides were single wythe split faced block. The client also had out a structural engineer, a GHC and an architect. Tje SE also brought out a guy to use deep probing radar top check for rebar in the block.
I used my old metal detector (like you use on a beach, looking for lost coins and stuff) and didn’t find any (which is typical for Chicago), but the SE couldn’t believe a 4 story single wythe building without rebar.
We also found a couple of other interesting things.
- The foundation wall (measured from top of footing to foundation wall / block interface) was 32" measured 10 ’ from the front sidewalk along the side, but measured 20’ further back, it was 36". The footings were sloped backwards. In any case, the minimum foundation footing depth around here is 48".
- No bond beams in the wall. No grouted block cells. “Some” of the CMU block cells located in the courses directly under floor and roof trusses were grouted and “some” had ladder wire in the mortar joint above this course.
- Major step cracking at the building corners, including the step cracking extending through the block in the bottom course.
Needless to say, the SE could not believe all these things. But, I saw them, everyday, when I was doing draw inspections some years back.
Looks like there will be a LOT of these type of jobs coming up.