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Are Those Cracks Serious?

 
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Old 04-22-2012, 02:50 AM   #1
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Are Those Cracks Serious?


Got a job to replace old carpet with laminate. Peel the old carpet off and found some cracks on the slab (slab on grade). Often I saw hair line cracks as shrinkage cracks. But this time, it is as wide as 1/8" at some places, and run from just a foot from the exterior wall, across the whole room, into the kitchen (causing cracks of ceramic tiles), into another room, and stops before touching the wall. And the two sides of the crack differ in height for about 1/8". The owner is a bit concerned as this house is not too old (build in 2003). So, are those cracks serious? The location is in CA, where it seldom goes freezing.
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Are those cracks serious?-bdrm3-008s.jpg   Are those cracks serious?-bdrm3-004s.jpg   Are those cracks serious?-kitech-001s.jpg  

Last edited by timzh; 04-22-2012 at 02:52 AM.
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:07 AM   #2
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
The location is in CA, where it seldom goes freezing.
But it shakes a lot. Those cracks can be floated with a leveling patch ( jiff set ect....)
IF your going to put a floating laminate with an underlayment over them.
It's obvious from your tile pictures that IF you plan to install tile again you MUST use
an anti-fracture membrane. Nothing can stop a "change of plane" crack. You said it drops 1/8"?

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Old 04-22-2012, 10:09 AM   #3
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Could be from a severe earthquake--------except there hasn't been one in many years and supposedly this is a new house. So it's more likely poor workmanship/substandard materials. I see them all the time under carpet. Builders and concrete subs on new projects sometimes KNOW they will be "covered" and they know how to take advantage and skimp on the old family recipe. What kind of moisture membrane do you suppose is under there to protect the home from the deleterious effects of moisture?

ALL kinds of things can and do go wrong with concrete. Some degree of cracking is fairly normal. The vast majority is just lack of integrity of the contractors who know the problems will be swept under the rug----so to speak. The home owner is right to be concerned but not for the laminate flooring. The concrete cracking--------before the earthquake isn't a great sign. We WILL have earthquakes soon enough. Then we find out more about the structural integrity of the rest of the joint.

Ss laminate "floats" it's one of the better choices for these conditions. All you can do is fill the crack and even off the concrete on both sides with a cement based floor patch and a 20" cement finishing trowel. Going above and beyond the call of duty--------maybe fill the crack with a waterproofing caulking/epoxy. I've only seen that done on commercial jobs. I've never actually been called for to do it. Not even sure specifically which material or brand to use. I just see it once in a while where those cracks are scary ugly in the customer's face.

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Old 04-22-2012, 04:22 PM   #4
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Thanks for your replies. Yeah, I am going to put cushion underlayment under and let the leminate float. But the home owner is afraid of the nature of the cracks and don't want to redo the floor in 1~2 years just because he has to deal with the cracks (growing cracks). So, at this moment he is hesitating if he should use carpet again, which make the checking easier.
BTW, there has not been much shake in recent years. So, it should not be an earthquake problem.
He is thinking if it could be a drain leakage.
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Old 04-22-2012, 04:33 PM   #5
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


First to say, I am a handyman, not a construction contractor, so I came here to seek some help from experts. Recently I got a job to replace old carpet with laminate. Peel the old carpet off and found some cracks on the slab (slab on grade). Often I saw hair line cracks as shrinkage cracks. But this time, it is as wide as 1/8" at some places, and run from just a foot from the exterior wall, across the whole room, into the kitchen (causing cracks of ceramic tiles), into another room, and stops before touching the wall. And the two sides of the crack differ in height for about 1/8" (at the severest place). The owner is a bit concerned as this house is not too old (build in 2003). So, are those cracks serious? The location is in CA, where it seldom goes freezing. I can level/repair the cracks with some epoxy, however, the homeowner worries that the cracks will keep growing, especially when the cause is unknown.
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Are those cracks serious?-bdrm3-004s.jpg   Are those cracks serious?-bdrm3-008s.jpg   Are those cracks serious?-kitech-001s.jpg   Are those cracks serious?-walkincloset-003s.jpg  
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:29 PM   #6
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Not to worry, those are shrinkage cracks. Here our gov't warranty is anything 1/4" or larger must be filled/repaired.

Shrinkage cracks are normal, happens with every floor.
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:55 PM   #7
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


If it goes from one side of the slab to the other, it might be a problem. For now, I agree with Kato.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:33 PM   #8
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


could've been hydrostaitc pressure...does he get water in heavy rains?
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:44 PM   #9
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


I agree with the other guys. I think i would still fill them with the self leveling concrete caulk made by PL. !
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:47 PM   #10
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


What happened to mine and Katie responses?
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:50 PM   #11
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaws
What happened to mine and Katie responses?
Your post was

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Old 04-22-2012, 07:52 PM   #12
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


I vote for earthquake.
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:57 PM   #13
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by ohiohomedoctor View Post
Your post was

Attachment 70380
Easy on the assumptions, Matt. It isn't always guys in black helicopters.
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:01 PM   #14
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinstaafl

Easy on the assumptions, Matt. It isn't always guys in black helicopters.
Yes Sir, sorry.
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:10 PM   #15
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by timzh View Post
the home owner is afraid of the nature of the cracks and don't want to redo the floor in 1~2 years just because he has to deal with the cracks (growing cracks). So, at this moment he is hesitating if he should use carpet again, which make the checking easier.
carpet tiles. Makes checking them easier if that's the concern.

I've often found that cracks always start somewhere and end somewhere.
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:12 PM   #16
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinstaafl View Post
Easy on the assumptions, Matt. It isn't always guys in black helicopters.
So they were lost in the black hole?
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:14 PM   #17
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Ah, old boy started two threads...
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:16 PM   #18
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaws View Post
So they were lost in the black hole?
I had a strange occurrence happen here once. Don't push it....or you too will get the dreaded negative red mark.
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:08 PM   #19
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Yep, shrinkage cracks.
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:15 PM   #20
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Re: Are Those Cracks Serious?


Shrinkage cracks can be up higher 1/8" on one side & through ceramic tiles? It would have me worried too.
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