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  1. #1

    Lightbulb Home Improvement Projects

    I thought I'd start a topic where home owners can share their experience with home improvement projects. I hope there will be some in depth explanations complete with visual aids. I will begin by detailing my experience with replacing a basement wall and an abominable basement access renovation.

    The Problem:

    My dad is stressing the importance of gutters as we work toward completion of this project, but I stress the previous care-taker's lack of ingenuity in dealing with water infiltration through my south basement wall. They must have thought that the 100+ lb. concrete slabs they placed against a brick wall lacking reinforcement would solve their troubles. Instead, it merely ensured the wall's demise. This wall makes a couple of 90 degree turns as it becomes the south wall of the access/stair area of the basement (which used to be an outdoor entrance). Rather than extending the basement area to contain the new entrance when a porch was added to the property above this area, someone decided to simply place wooden stairs on top of the dirt slope where stairs poured in forms once rested. I eventually want to turn the outside walls comprising the corner of this area into load bearing walls when I replace the roof.

    The Solution:

    Remove a large number of bricks. Remove a good foot of the dirt wall responsible for pushing the brick wall to it's demise. Level the footing for the new wall. Remove dirt slope of stair/access area. Create a new footing for the wall to set on. Create a basement floor/footing for the access area. Rebuild wall with concrete blocks, re-rod, and concrete mixes (there will be a window set slightly below ground level with a window well). Rebuild stairs into basement.

    Where I'm at:

    The footing for the new wall has been laid, except for the footing/basement floor in the access/stair area. Dirt from the access/stair area must be removed along with remnants of brick walls for same.

    What's next:

    Wall separating living and dining room area to be removed. There is really a never ending list, but I can't get too far ahead of myself.

    I will post a few pictures of the project.

    I hope that others will share their experiences here as well.
    Last edited by Jedi Clint; 07-24-2002 at 01:14 AM.
    ubi mel ibi apes

  2. #2
    Down the access area. You must take a 90 degree turn to the left in order to enjoy the dirt slope .
    Last edited by Jedi Clint; 07-24-2002 at 01:11 AM.
    ubi mel ibi apes

  3. #3

  4. #4
    The big pile of dirt (there is another pile underneath the tarp seen in the previous picture).
    ubi mel ibi apes

  5. #5
    Pile of bricks.....note it's size relation to the Geo Metro next to it. There will be more dirt and brick added to the piles before all is said and done.
    ubi mel ibi apes

  6. #6
    jjreason's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Lubing up the probe - it's business time.
    That could be described as "my worst nightmare". We bought a real starter home when we moved out west in 00, it's all we could afford. Here's a list of everything we've done to it so far, in chronological order:

    Reseated the support posts the house sits on in proper cement; also added and replaced a few of the posts. Damage: $500.00

    Finished the fence in the backyard so it's enclosed. Damage: $800.00.

    Renovated the kitchen: Dishwasher installed, plumbing and everything, 600.00; New stacking washer and dryer added, plumbing and everything, 1000.00; painted all walls and cupboards, little money but much time; new floor laid, $600.00.

    Ripped out a major built in closet in the living room then had to pay to have the textured wall repaired: 400.00.

    New stairs and railing built: $600.00.

    New paint in living room: again cheap, but time consuming.

    New flooring in living room (laminate - looks great!) 1600 "parts and labor"

    New carpet laid all through the upstairs: 1700.

    Literally a fortune. At least now the inside looks great. I still have to do a few finishing jobs - puttying joints in trim, putting sealer on the floor boards that don't fit perfectly tight together, a few small paint touch ups in the kitchen.

    Then we can start on the outside..... There's something to be said for condo fees. Sorry I didn't offer much in the way of instruction, my wife is the project manager and Im usually only physical labour support staff.

  7. #7
    Thank you for your contribution jjreason. You have 2 projects completed that I have yet to schedule. I would like to fence in my yard and add a dish-washer in the kithchen. It all depends on $$ though. My dad and I got 2 rows of concrete blocks laid for the south wall today. I have a friend coming to help me remove the stair/access area tomorrow night.......after a full day of block laying .
    ubi mel ibi apes

  8. #8

    Thumbs up PROGRESS

    Six blocks up and ready for more + the access area has been cleared of unwanted dirt, and 3 blocks are in place for that area.
    ubi mel ibi apes

  9. #9
    The blue hue I spoke of previously looks more green at 6 PM.
    ubi mel ibi apes

  10. #10
    The access area is making me really happy as of late.
    ubi mel ibi apes


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