Back Porch – Round Two

So after about a week Mike and I set aside a few days to really make some progress. We had the most difficult task ahead of us: Within the least amount of time, knock out the old foundation and replace it.

So thats what we did. Jake, a neighbor of ours dropped off a couple of extra house jacks and we completed jacking the room up on a set of 4×4″ posts that were connected to the walls. Since we had to replace the bottom board of the walls themselves we had to jack them up separate from the floor. The floor was supported by crawling underneath and supporting with cinder blocks and shims.

Once we trusted the supports we knocked out the wood and old brick. We were amazed with how easily it came down. Check out these videos!

Dave removing wood and turning it to Dust

Mike removing brick and walk around of floating room

To replace the foundation we removed the old brick and set cinder blocks on a layer of mortar on top of the existing footer that was poured from when the room was built. Basically the blocks were just stacked using a cement glue to hold them together. The weight was really on the corners because the back side of the room is connected to the rest of the house, but we added extra support on the back as well. On top of the blocks is a green treated barrier on which the new 2x12s set. Basically, we put the whole thing on stilts!

More Photos: 


Back porch – Round One

Sarah and I have chosen to get working on the basement and kitchen so we can have a couple more rooms to rent by august. To have more rooms we need a biger kitchen, and to get a bigger kitchen we are going to expand onto the back porch. Here in lies the rub.

The back porch had some soft spots in the floor which I learned was caused by an insect that has slowly been eating away at the wood over the last 50 years. Becasue the wood wasn’t dried and the porch foundation was sealed shut, we have a very humid condition which allowed the bug to survive all there generations. On top of it, the brick that this sits on is in REALLY bad shape as well.
This weekend I began what I thought would be a one or two day ordeal. The idea: jack up the structure and replace the bad brick with good cinderblocks.

I stated tearing off the siding and the layer of thin wood underneath when I heard a loud bang sound. I froze as I figured that the wood was so bad that it was giving out and the porch was going to rip off of my house. I just stood there, waiting for the next sound. Luckily it didn’t come. I went inside and told sarah I was in over my head and she got me to start calling buddies. Thank God for community.

bad wood picture

Greg came by and definatly gave some confidence to the situation. Then I set up a work day for the next day.
Mike Butak and Paul Allen came by to help out, and Casey made it over to consult and drop off a jack. After all is said and done for the day, my porch is preatty much floating on some jacks and I now know how bad the situation is.

Next weekend Mike (as well as anyone else I can find) and I are going to knock out the bad wood and brick and replace it.

Click here to check out more photos from this project