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  • Cracks in Basement Floors

    I live in the Chicago area and am looking to buy a house. However, it has cracks in the basement floor. I am told that builders sometimes do that on purpose. Is this true?

    Dave.

  • #2
    Floor Cracks

    Dave,

    What you may be seeing is control joints that were cut into the floor. These would be approximately 1/8th-3/16th" and they usually are straight in nature.

    If this does not describe the type of "cracks" in the floor, then they are cracks and not control joints. It is a natural phenomenon for cracks to form in concrete floors as a result of drying and shrinkage. The concrete shrinks due to moisture loss during the drying stage.

    Because concrete does not bend: If these cracks are more than 1/8" wide, one side of the crack is higher than the other, or they are coming from corners, they may be a result of settlement. You may want to have a professional look at the foundation in this instance.

    Hope this helps,
    Admin

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    • #3
      cracks in floor

      Dave,
      If the cracks are opened evenly and wider at the top you've got hydrostatic pressure under the floor pushing upward. This means there's water under the floor swelling the soil and creating this effect. Interior drainage is needed.

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