Need suggestions repairing a floor joist

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 1 - 20 of total 100 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
adatesman

climber
philadelphia, pa
Topic Author's Original Post - Sep 10, 2012 - 11:05am PT
Howdy Folks...

Not sure the best way to fix this, so figured I'd tap into the wisdom here before saying F*#k It and either leaking the temporary fix in place or burning the place down.

In a nutshell, the corner of the one room would move, so obviously there was an issue with the underlying floor joist. Of course the basement wall stopped 3 feet short of that corner (dug sometime after the house was built in 1859, so over the weekend I knocked out a couple courses of block to finally see what the problem is. Looks like a slow leak in the heater pipe rotted out the joist pretty bad, to the point that the end fell off when I poked it. Right now I have it shored up well enough that the corner doesn't move anymore, but that doesn't seem a proper repair. Here's a pic:



Seems to be I should be sistering the beam and supporting it on the end, but then the damage is covered and I lose access to the heater pipes (which may or may not leak). Plus I'd have to space the sister out a board thickness to accommodate the pipes (notch would be too deep), and that doesn't sound so good either.

So.... burn the place down? (started my day smashing the tip of my thumb with a hammer, so rather unhappy with this place at the moment)

Thx!
-Aric.

Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Sep 10, 2012 - 11:09am PT
You're going to have to reroute that pipe before you can do any significant repair, IMHO.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Sep 10, 2012 - 11:10am PT
In order of 'rightness'*:

A. The torch
B. Sister a pressure treated mate
C. Remove the offender lest he contaminate his brethren and start afresh.

*You decide if it is in ascending or descending order.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Sep 10, 2012 - 11:22am PT
Tough spot. Rim joist holding up an exterior wall I presume.

How about sister one or two new treated joists on to existing ( Rot cut out first obviously) then build up cantilevered joist / beam / posts / pier footings under a few of the existing joists to support the new built up rim joist. At least its pretty localized so it dosn't have to occupy your whole crawl space.

If existing rim is 2x10 make the new built up sistered on 2x8 so you can get the new cantilevered joists under them against the existing foundation wall.

That should at least give you a few more decades until you really want to torch the whole thing for insurance.
WBraun

climber
Sep 10, 2012 - 11:38am PT
Support with bottle jack.

Then an exact measured welded steel beam with provisions for attaching bolts to anchors in place.

You know ... visualize it and you'll see what I'm talking about.

Will last longer than wood.

Just an idea ......
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Sep 10, 2012 - 11:45am PT
^^^ Last man standing? ;-)

If you do jack it up with a bottle jack be sure to put a temp post in.
Bottle jacks have been known to bleed off. That is what led to the crash of
American Airlines 191 in 1979.
adatesman

climber
philadelphia, pa
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 10, 2012 - 11:52am PT
Yup, right at the front wall of the house and localized to just the section under that end of the radiator. Here's the view from above:



Rerouting the pipe isn't really feasible, as I can't really move the radiator. Not in the first pic is the main heater feed for the upstairs, which would also have to be moved (which would be less than a small job, to say the least)



Is the following what you're suggesting, Bruce? A vertical cut to take out the entire left side of the joist and slip a pair of treated 2x8 in there, support both ends and then a treated 2x8 over the joint to tie the new to the old? I think the bad wood stops ~the middle of the radiator, so the piece tying new to old could be a couple feet long and I avoid the pipes. All of the other joists are fine; it's just the end of this one that has an issue.

Hmm... Looks like the wood doesn't get solid until to the right of that main feed pipe. Makes it more difficult due to access, but that plan should still work.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:00pm PT
Remove the pipe and the rotten wood first, then I think I'd sister it with 4x8 or 4x10 PT up to 8 ft long, lagged into the existing rim joist. The extra beef on the new joist would allow you to back up its strength with a short PT 4x4 or 4x6 post on a decent sized footing poured into the ground in the corner, if your stone stem wall's face is plumb.

If you bought a 4x8 8 or 10 footer, you could cut your post material off the end to save buying two boards.

As far as the pipe goes, just run it up the outside of, and elbow it at the top of your new joist, run it through a notch in the top of the joist to another elbow directing it up through the original hole in the floor. The plumbing can be done first. Or you could replumb it in the same configuration, and notch the side of your 4x to accommodate it.
Higher48

Social climber
Seattle
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:04pm PT
Definitely need to fix that leak, so some plumbing work is a given. No need to panic, since what you've done so far to support the floor will hold you until you can do the right fix, which is replace that rim joist. Sistering to a sound joist is a great way to increase the bearing capacity; sistering to that nasty thing would be a crime (it's supporting the outside wall, if I'm not mistaken?).
It's not an insignificant project, but it's doable by a handy homeowner: rent house-jacks (no, not expensive) to take the weight off that rim joist, hack the joist out, and replace with pressure treated lumber. A house built in 1859 is going to have a lot of give in it, so your not going to have to worry about cracking windows and doors that won't close, etc.
apogee

climber
Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:04pm PT
Can you get at it from the exterior?
adatesman

climber
philadelphia, pa
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 10, 2012 - 12:11pm PT
I think I'm getting a bit confused here with "rim joist"... The house is stone (21" thick) and there's nothing behind this joist other than the stone wall/foundation. Basically the joists lay in alcoves on either end (and supported in the middle as well in the basement only), and this is the first one along the front wall. There is nothing tying this joist into the wall behind it btw, and I don't see why it would need to be since the only load on it is the radiator.

Kinda weird how they built this place... None of the interior walls are load bearing; it's all oversized floor joists supported on their ends, with the interior walls added later. Probably because it was originally built as a public school and they needed an open floor plan.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:16pm PT
Rim joist is a general term for the outside framing member in a joisted floor or ceiling, the terminology is irrelevant - the problem is obvious.

If the entire joist is rotten, a full replacement might be warranted. It's always a trade off between a faster, easier, cheaper fix that is less than perfect, and the ultimate repair.

Tearing the whole thing out might open the proverbial can o' worms.



Higher48

Social climber
Seattle
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:22pm PT
New pictures and responses since I added my 2 cents - take this in the spirit intended, but I learned construction doing remodels and repairs on old houses like this in New York's Hudson valley, and my gut reaction is "RUN!!!1!"

That being said ;) I still think you should either take the easy route (fix the leak, leave the support for the floor you've already provided) or replace the joist. In terms of resale value for an 1859 house, 1)any home inspector is going to see a sistered on member and wonder what's behind it; 2)if they see a replaced rim joist they'll give a better report. Leaving it with your temporary support is really no different than #1.

Remember: "If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy."
adatesman

climber
philadelphia, pa
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 10, 2012 - 12:24pm PT
Gotcha. Was getting confused wrt lagging it into something behind it since it's originally unattached.

Hmm... Looks like I need to drop this for today and go throw another coat of paint on the one section of stucco. I suspect the flaked paint on the floor in the second pic above is due to rain seeping in and I can see small cracks in the stucco that the first coat didn't bridge.

Thanks for the help, guys! I've got a plan now and will start on it tomorrow.
Norwegian

Trad climber
Placerville, California
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:29pm PT
epoxy injection?
we used this method on railroad trellis retrofits.

the epoxy is a little pricey,
but not when compared to new timbers
plus the time / labor to install.

available is some pretty amazing products,
their specific gravity is much lighter than zero
so the injection achievies cellular pore spaces within the wood (petrification),
essentially creating a composite member that is
stronger than steel, with unprecendented longevity.

kinda like my penis.

adatesman

climber
philadelphia, pa
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 10, 2012 - 12:34pm PT
You're spot on with that, Higher.... You'd think that after doing a 1930's vintage and then a 1900's vintage house I'd have learned that lesson. In fact, I seem to recall halfway through the last one to smack me if I ever do this again... :-)

Spot on with the home inspector thing too... That's the main reason I asked, as we probably won't be keeping this place long term and I don't want to do more than needed, but don't want to do it halfassed either.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:34pm PT
I can't imagine cutting out the rot / replacing the existing rim joist if there's a lot of load on it so sistering on some new ones makes sense, then its all a matter of giving the new ones some support which if you can't do with the existing foundation then maybe my suggested cantilevered supporting joists (crossing and under existing joists) might work.

I sure don't see why demoing the whole house can't be avoided easily! Is the sub floor rotten too?

edit: maybe what warbler says makes more sense ( 4x8 eight footer or so spanning the rotten part. The thing is, it is now the load bearing member so the load path must be created under it somehow, either with the existing foundation (which sounds a little suspect) or new posts and pier footings.

Once all that is in place, go to the exterior to carve out / replace the rotten existing rim joist and cladding.
FrankZappa

Trad climber
80' from the Hankster
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:35pm PT
I would first fix the leaky pipe.

Replacing the joist is a bad idea as the flooring is nailed into the top of the joist and my guess is that the floor is not perfectly level so there is no way your perfectly straight replacement joist will line up with the floor.

I would jack it up until it's where you want it. You say you can't move the pipe. (I don't believe you....) But if that is the case, sister joists on either side of the pipe to the end and into the seat, then sister on a full length joist onto those. You obviously won't be able to get the seat on both ends but your first set of sisters will take care of it. Not perfect but it sounds like it's only holding up the floor so fck it!

I would use an LVL Microlam....much stronger, and 1 3/4" width might give the pipe a little more wiggle room. If you fix the leak there shouldn't be an issue with rotting.
Higher48

Social climber
Seattle
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:43pm PT
Norwegian - interesting idea. Not so much a DIY project, but possibly the least disruptive. As I mentioned earlier, I've had plenty of experience with 1800's houses, and the last thing you'll ever say about them is that they're examples of standardized construction. Even my "replace the rim joist" suggestion may run up against problems like the original joist was 12" at one end and 11" at the other.
Higher48

Social climber
Seattle
Sep 10, 2012 - 12:44pm PT
Kind of like my penis.
Messages 1 - 20 of total 100 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Trip Report and Articles
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews