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Excavation too close to stumps

Discussion in 'Repairs & Maintenance' started by rjw180, 11th Nov, 2015.

  1. rjw180

    rjw180 Member

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    Hi all

    It appears that the previous owners of our place were overly ambitious when expanding the garage underneath the house. It was expanded several years ago (can't remember exactly when but the section 32 contained details on permits etc) and there were metal beams put in place to support the floor where the garage is. However, they have excavated very close to the stumps in trying to maximise the usable area, both at the side and the rear.

    Below are pics of the side where you can see the clay soil starting to fracture next to the concrete stump.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]


    The next pics are of the back. It looks like they may have realised the problem and erected a rudimentary retaining wall. That flexipipe is for the sump pump that gets rid of water that collects occasionally during heavy rain.


    [​IMG][​IMG] [​IMG]

    Currently there do not seem to be any major impacts from this but I'm guessing I probably shouldn't leave it too long, particularly for the side.


    Thoughts?

    I'm expecting I will need to engage a professional of some sort - who would be best to talk to?

    What would the likely solution be? Reinforced concrete retaining wall? Restump further away from the edge of the excavated dirt? Maybe welding extensions to the metal supporting beams?

    How much am I likely to be up for? (probably a very "piece of string" type question I know)
     
  2. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    @rjw180 You will need an structural engineer. If you could requisition the engineering plans or get them through an FOI request via council. Without being able to view the photos, scope of works is anyone's guess
     
    Last edited: 12th Nov, 2015
  3. Big Red

    Big Red Well-Known Member

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    pictures not working?
     
  4. rjw180

    rjw180 Member

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    Pics should be working now

    Thanks Scott, have put up a job request for a structural engineer on hipages.

    If anyone has any recommendations, let me know.
     
  5. norwoodman

    norwoodman Well-Known Member

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    Would get a structural engineer to look at it in person, but based on what this one can see briefly it doesn't look like that retaining wall as it is currently really does anything! It looks like the steel beams and RHS columns might have picked up a chunk of the loads that the concrete stumps would have previously carried. Hopefully the concrete stumps aren't doing any heavy lifting as this would worsen the issues at soil level.
     
  6. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    That is a tricky one, it is hard going off just the photos.
    First thing, your best to chase up as many plans as you can from council (like Scott said) to see what's going on with the extension work. The disturbed columns MAY have been dig in deeper or some other work done which means it's all good how it is (best case). Wouldn't go using the new steel beams.

    The current retaining wall looks like it's just in for the water to get away and isn't structural.

    The columns have lost the support on that excavated side so possibly will require a retaining wall, like concrete filled besser blocks. May not require any further digging done of your lucky, just blocks straight up where the temporary one is now.
     
    Last edited: 20th Nov, 2015
  7. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    I'd be getting an engineer in yesterday. Some real concern about the pier/stump where clay has been excavated as you don't have full support depending on the depth of the stump.
    That retaining wall is little more than aesthetic.

    Any new retaining wall will need footings
     
  8. rjw180

    rjw180 Member

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    Thanks guys, you have confirmed my suspicions. Am requesting plans from council although they don't promise that they have any.

    I can see exposed concrete on some of the stumps at chest level so I'm fairly sure they don't go deep enough to be useful.