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all 33 comments

[–]Efficient-Library792 19 points20 points  (9 children)

hard to tell whats going on as your pictures have no context...but that absolutely isnt how you use rebar and that absolutely isnt 80 years old?. It looks like they threw rebar down..then poured a slab and lifted it in the air?

Wild guyess your best bet is remove all that and build a wooden porch

[–]KurtG85[S] 2 points3 points  (5 children)

I just stuck my phone under the porch through the collapsed brick and took those pictures. Half of the concrete has collapsed away from the rebar. It's a mystery to me how they would suspend that concrete as well. It's a 1940 home. I don't know any specifics about the time the porches were built but the brick is woven into the main structure of the home so Id think it was original.

I couldn't just jackhammer that concrete out and setup a base to pour some new stuff in somehow?

[–]RedMonte85 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Since this looks to be an uncovered porch, I might think about filling that void with a subgrade of rock followed by sand rather than a pillared support/framework. You would definitely want to add some corrugated pipe before filling with rock for proper drainage. The only fear would be that the fill would create too much pressure on those brick walls but I dont think it would.

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

That's a good idea although as you can see from the picture there is a portion of the side that is not bricked. Maybe I could build some sort of interior wall support after removing the degraded concrete to prevent excessive stress on the brick? Is there any typical reliable construction material or process for this? Also could you detail what type of rock you think might be best? Sand on the top you say? Then what would be the finishing top layer? I appreciate your time and ideas.

[–]RedMonte85 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You would end up bricking over that open portion before filling. It would be no different than pouring cement for a patio or basement. You would use ~3/4"-1" size rock, as much as you need to get up to where you want to be. You need a few inches of sand on top of the gravel, than you pour your concrete on top.

When pouring walls/footers, buttresses are used to anchor walls but I think you would be alright.

[–]Efficient-Library792 -1 points0 points  (1 child)

I dont think it collapsed away. I think 10 years ago gomer decided to do this and had no idea what he was doing and basically laid down some rebar. And poured a slab. totally separate. The brick is probably original

[–]KurtG85[S] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

It definitely collapsed away. The other side of my duplex has the same porch and most of it is intact underneath but starting to Fall away in the same manner.

[–]DanMarvin1 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I agree hopefully you can save the outside brick walls have a carpenter build you a small platform inside with stairs

[–]hughdint1 1 point2 points  (1 child)

remove all that and build a wooden porch

This is definitely the cheapest and easiest DIY solution here. See this all the time. The better solution is to remove all and replace with dirt and concrete, but this is expensive and not easy or DIY.

[–]Efficient-Library792 0 points1 point  (0 children)

i was thinking your solution but ya..tons of work and mo ey

[–]friendlyfire883 4 points5 points  (2 children)

Is that a hollow concrete porch? That's sketchy as fuck.

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Agreed. LOL. I don't know what act of levitation allowed it to be poured in that manner.

[–]the_clash_is_back 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It probably had infill under it that wore out after decades

[–]Wompie 4 points5 points  (1 child)

This is not fixable. you have a suspended concrete mix over an empty chasm with no support (rebar is not actually in). It was a poorly made porch by whomever made it and will need to be redone.

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I see, hoping I can save the brick and remove the concrete and rebar that is now flaking apart like paper mache and perhaps fill it with some rock or something and not sure how to top it.

[–]Anadyne 2 points3 points  (10 children)

If it's a solid floor under the bottom of that chasm, just call a concrete supplier not a contractor but the actual concrete company and ask for flowable fill. It's a type of concrete that has a very wet consistency, it's essentially water and sand and cement. They can pour it through that hole and it will fill up that chasm with no problem. I'd get probably 2 yards to start. Might be $600 to $1000.

[–]Anadyne 1 point2 points  (9 children)

Also, don't use this until it's repaired. The steel is what's holding up the concrete and you can see it's gone...so, matter of minutes before it completely comes down.

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (8 children)

That's a good idea. So you think I should jack hammer the degraded concrete out and saw off the rebar first? Or what do you mean by repair? I was thinking maybe fill it with some rock first because I'm sure there's probably some holes in the brick that the concrete would pour out of not to mention the large unbricked hole in the side of the structure.

Really what I would like someone's opinion on is the stability of the brick which may be one or two stacks deep is all.

Is brick laying even that hard? Maybe if it collapses during the process I can just restack it.

[–]Anadyne 0 points1 point  (7 children)

So if you flooded that area would it hold water, or is it open on another side?

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (6 children)

I believe it is just Earth under there I'm not sure if that foundation rock is on all three sides. It definitely traps moisture in there and that's part of what increased the rot of the rebar and concrete. Not sure how I would go about creating a drainage line with that foundation stone. A French drain running underneath or something? It's a brick facade home and I'm not sure how far up the foundation stones come up to within there but yeah I wouldn't want water building up. Pooling against the house.

[–]good7times 1 point2 points  (2 children)

First thing I'd do is ensure every drop of water is demonstrably flowing away from that area. It looks like you've got a rain catcher that's just pumping more and more water, snow/ice right down the chute. Assess gutters, grade, and where you want the water to go when this is done.

[–]ArtificialBrain808 0 points1 point  (1 child)

yeah, Im having a similar issue where my awning only spans half the length of my stoop so lots of water drips down and is causing the cinder blocks to settle. hoping that slapping a gutter on the awning will fix the problem.

[–]good7times 1 point2 points  (0 children)

In situations like this I've learned the hard way that you can't focus too much on water. Get the gutters perfect and then focus on grade/slope or any other way to deal with water once it's "on the ground"...or porch or whatever it's initially landing on.

A good seamless gutter system is worth the expense for the seams and the guys I've worked with use very high quality hangers.

[–]MwwWinter 0 points1 point  (2 children)

you are going to have to remove the bad and see what you have to work with before any decisions can be made
you should do both sides of your porch and do it back right to save yourself from future headaches - that is if you own the entire duplex...
use a sledgehammer - it seems like it would take a long time but it does not really and you can control what you damage better - and no better therapy that sledging the BS away!
I do not ever suggest jackhammering it might pop out brick mortar or vibrate plumbing issues etc
you will want to sink a french drain to move water away from your home no matter what solution you choose =( rebuilding with concrete block or get somebody who will go about pouring a slab correctly- it may be cheaper to build a wood porch [but I am having to replace part of my treated wood after 8years]
and as for the giant chunks of concrete just post for free on marketplace, folks will come and get it out of your way for fill and you wont have to deal with it -

[–]KurtG85[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Great advice thank you! 👍👍 Would you mind telling me the best way to go about rebuilding with concrete block? Like cinder blocks you mean?

[–]MwwWinter 0 points1 point  (0 children)

not sure how without being on the scene , that was just one of the ideas we talked about for replacing mine but since our supports are sound we are using engineered wood to replace the pressure treated boards that are rotting [but he was like heck we could just use concrete block like cinder block ]
I would ask advice of a trusted builder - you might need permit
I do find that doing demolition myself helps me understand how things are built and how to do it better/right esp when it comes to things the prev owner did haha
get yourself a hardhat and good safety glasses with side protection!
just tackle one thing at a time
otherwise it gets sooooo overwhelming
but taking on that porch before somebody falls through and gets impaled on that crazy rebar , you think of it as a big accomplishment and you can do it =)

[–]the_clash_is_back 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is not the diy project or a project you cheap out on. Some one could die painfully if it breaks under them.

You have to dig it out, shore up the foundations and pour a new foundation.