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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    4

    Default Challenging Porch Repair

    I have an underground garage at my house. The garage door sits a couple feet in front of the house's main support beams. This means the porch, which is made of cement, is partly inside the garage. My issue is that water (go figure I live in Oregon)has seeped through due to undetected cracks in the cement and deteriorated the porch from the underside. A poor roof drainage has caused a crack through the wall along the edge of the garage in that same area and I now have huge issues. I have no idea how to fix it. I want to find a cheaper solution than to tear the whole thing down and rebuild, and City construction rules also limit what I can do without incurring huge permit fees. Any ideas? I wish I could post pictures, but do not know how to do that since I do not have a website, and am simply a homeowner.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    6,751

    Default Re: Challenging Porch Repair

    The way to fix it is to tear it down, repair the walls and re-do the porch and roof, in such a way that it doesn't happen again.

    Get at least 3 estimates from general contractors in your area. Don't look for a band aid repair job, or you will be doing it again soon. Go with the contractor with the most experience and best refs.

    Regarding the city permit: you could do a repair job without a permit, just check with your contractor, your repair may qualify.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Challenging Porch Repair

    First of all, I can't even get contractors to bid on the job because of building issues, parking issues (not parking on my side of the street and a two hour limit on the opposite side due to bike lanes eliminating parking), and the difficulty of the job. I have had a bid for what you suggest, but I do not have $17,000 to get this done. I want something outside the box, but thanks for the suggestion. As I said, it is a challenge. I posted it because I know the obvios solution. Can someone come up with an alternate?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Challenging Porch Repair

    yeah well, first you need to fix the gutters, if u don't have any get some asp. you will need a "mastic/water barrier system" that will get the cement part done, the side of the house/ building will need to be opened, there is probably rot there and you need the permit for your own safety.
    Last edited by Worknot; 08-01-2012 at 01:44 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Challenging Porch Repair

    You know, I came here because I thought I'd get better advice. I posted this with the title I did, because I thought some of you might think outside to box. The gutters have been replace and are 6" wide and designed to take the max amount of water drainage due to the amount of rain we get in this neck of the woods. Come on people, make me a believer that some of you know what you are talking about. No insult to those who are scratching your head to find a solution, but to assume I haven't done anything to stop the continued damage is an insult.

    If I had been able to detect this issue long ago, I would have fixed it, but due to how absorbant concrete can be, and how it can hide water channels and suddenly cause huge chunks to fall off a ceiling, it is difficult for me to address as it has been a build up of issues. I did not know the damage had been done until the ceiling in my garage started to fall off in chunks. Try getting insurance to cover this... it won't work as there was no "incident" that caused it.

    What might I do beyond total distruction and rebuild?

    I can dig down on the outside of the wall to stop the continuation of the crack leak into the garage on the wall. Anyone who knows about "water" knows that a patch on the inside will just pop off, so it has to be done on the outside to block entry. I hope to be able to do that, but can I fix the long crack that goes through the basement wall? I am howver concerned about the integrity of the wall. i.e. could that crack have made the whole structure weak? Is sealing it from the outside (preventing furtther damage) enough? I thought about putting in steel plates to help reinforce the wall, but don't know if I need to go that far.

    The other issue still remaining is what to do about the crumbling ceiling in the garage? I don't think you can cement it back in due to gravity. i.e. what kind of cement can be fuilt up to replace that which had dropped from a ceiling? How do I repair a cement "roof"?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    6,751

    Default Re: Challenging Porch Repair

    Mlish,

    Thank you for trying to find answers for free in this forum. With very little information you provided and with no pictures to go with, it's hard to tell you what to do.

    We are a bunch of folks who volunteer our time here. Some of us are accomplished, knowledgable and experienced contractors. Others may not be. But to read your mocking reply, with a touch of a demanding tone, is ridiculous.

    Not all of us are sitting by the computer 24/7 to give you what you want. Just be patient. If you want immidiate help with good, effective results - you know what to do: pay a licensed contractor his 17K. Don't have the money? borrow it. There are "improvement loans" you know.

    If you want an answer "out of the box", I'd say: do it yourself or hire cheap, unskilled, unqualified day workers. You never know, you might get your problem fixed.

    Next time you have a toothache, will you look for a cheap solution out of the box or go see an expensive dentist?

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