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  1. #1
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    Default Do I need to restump the whole house?

    Hello, can someone give me any advice about stumping before I go ahead and spend about $6000.00 on restumping my whole home.

    I just received two quotes for restumping my home and I was wondering whether there was a way that I can have the house releveled (without restumping). The loungeroom is uneven with the fireplace above the level of the floorboards and some of the doors are not level and there are some cracks in the walls. An archicentre consultant told me a couple of years ago that the stumps appear to be in good condition. One of the restumping companies also said they would last another 20 years.

    Someone mentioned recently that if the stumps are in good condition that instead of restumping, that some kind of strong sheeting can be placed inbetween the stumps and the beams which would raise the level of the house without the need for replacing all the stumps. Is this possible and how much should this cost?

    Also can someone please tell me what underpinning is?


    Thanks a lot

    Kerryv

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  3. #2
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    We had one side of our house jacked up and metal plates (see pic) were installed around the base of the relevant stumps. Then a bolt is passed through the stump attaching it to the metal plates. Most of the old stumps were retained, but some were replaced. We certainly didn't need the whole house restumped, and the house has stayed level in the subsequent 15 years.

    I would ask around about the metal plate restumping option. I forget the name of the mob that did ours, but it was very good value (from memory it was two contractors for about three days).
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  4. #3
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    The bloke who did my place (Licenced contractor) jacked up the bearers and put packing between the top of the stump and the bearer itself. Most of it was Fibre Cement sheeting cut to size, and where he needed a thicker packer he used hardwood decking off-cuts

    Admittedly they replaced 2 defective stumps with steel posts and the margin of variance was only 45mm up or down.

    It still didn't solve the problem of sagging bearers that were installed as green hardwood over 80 years ago - but that is only about 10mm at the worst over a 3000mm span

    I was quite amazed that houses built in those days had very little to attach the stumps to the house or vise versa - just a couple of angled nails every here and there
    People make mistakes...
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  5. #4
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    underpinning is essentially replacing your footings or foundations or increasing the size of your footings. It is generally a long slow and expensive job.

  6. #5
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    Hi Kerry,

    If you had looked through the archives on this subject matter you may have come across some post(s) similar to yours. However after being ripped off 1st time around by a company called XUytfsikbwux!!. We got another mob in who did what appears so far an excellent job. They levelled it off using a digital leveller unlike the first crowd who used a phrestoric water level. You can purchase a more advance water level from Bunnings for around the $100 mark that will give you a good idea how level (or unlevel) your house is.

    Regards
    David

  7. #6
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    Post Stumps.

    i was quoted $350 each for concrete stumps last year. I only need to get 3 done and the others couls be packed out as needed. Did anybody catch the house the was knocked over in Brisbane on the news the other night? Mental note not to use that company.....
    Dave,
    hug the tree before you start the chainsaw.

  8. #7
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    Default Thanks everyone for your stumping advice!!

    Can anyone please recommend a reputable stumping company in the Melbourne area (I'm in Oakleigh -SE Melb) who will quote on placing cement sheeting inbetween the bearer and the stump?

    I think the main problem with my stumps is that they haven't decayed but have sunk into the ground and caused the house to be unlevel as my area has bad drainage.

    Does anyone know if packing of cement sheeting (as an alternative to complete reblocking) is likely to level the floor in my loungeroom etc which is sloping away from the fireplace? I have been told that if I polish the floorboards in the loungeroom the uneveness will be more noticable.

    Also Zenwood, you mentioned for me to look into the metal plate option as you say your house has stayed level for 15 years since having this done. I am assuming you had a similar problem to me in that your floors when unlevel before you had this done? Do the metal plates raise the stump level so that they are supporting the floor more?


    Thanks again everyone

    Kerryv

  9. #8
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    Kerry: yes, my floor was uneven before I had this done. The metal plates do indeed raise the stumps to achieve a level floor, as well as stopping the stumps sinking any further into the ground. The metal collar around the stump is wedge-shaped, and has ski-shaped ends to the feet, so that as they hammer the plate into place, the wedge acts against the bolt to raise the stump against the previously jacked-up floor. I have updated the pic in the post above to illustrate the concept.
    Those are my principles, and if you don't like them . . . well, I have others.

  10. #9
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    $100 for a water level!! you must be joking?? A bit of plastic tube and an empty Coke bottle and your in business. Digital/smigital fancy stuff for impressing plebs!!. seriously Google water level and get some clues on the concept ( after all water has been around since even before Prehistoric times and there have been no confirmed cases of it running up hill!! ) buy yourself a cheap jack from Supercheap or somesuch Mob a couple of blocks of wood and level the joint yourself. Do it slowly nothing too dramatic all at once , say 20mm per adjustment and use Fibre cement sheet or hardwood for packing and Bobs your Uncle. One other point I forgot you will cause cracking if the House is more than a smidgeon out of wack. No more gaps to the rescue
    Plausible deniability is the key to success

  11. #10
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    Default water levels

    Water levels are great for levelling anything. Just make sure you have no bubble in them and off you go. You can use them around corners, different rooms, finding the same height on the same wall next door, front door to back door and anywhere else you can think of. Lets see a digital level do that!
    Professionals use them because it's cheap and accurate. Just make sure the clear hose is around 8-10mm dia as the water will take a bit longer to "settle" on the mark if it's smaller and also put a few drops of food colouring in the water to be able to see it better. To prime it, just dip one end into a tank of the coloured water and suck on the other at a lower point and let siphoning take over. When carrying it, put a finger over each end to stop the water from running out. Dead easy.
    I hope it all goes well for you.

  12. #11
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    See this page for how to use a water level video:
    http://www.taunton.com/finehomebuild...ges/hvt045.asp

  13. #12
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    With restumping, the best way to find out wether your house needed to or not is by dig one of the stumps. Although they sometimes look ok from the top but often underneath they have been deterioated. Stumps aren't that expensive, I paid $4.50 for a 800 mm stump 100x100 from Mitre 10. They would be cheaper from a timber yard or when you buy them in bulk.

    It costs 5k to 12k because of the labor. If anybody think it is easy. Just dig one and see if you still have the energy for the remaining stumps.

  14. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by inasinman View Post
    With restumping, the best way to find out wether your house needed to or not is by dig one of the stumps. Although they sometimes look ok from the top but often underneath they have been deterioated. Stumps aren't that expensive, I paid $4.50 for a 800 mm stump 100x100 from Mitre 10. They would be cheaper from a timber yard or when you buy them in bulk.
    I'll second that. We just had our house restumped and whilst we didn't think the footings were in such bad shape (hardwood stumps, all original bar one), we were surprised. Each day when we got home and more and more stumps had been replaced, we thanked ourselves for getting the whole place restumped. Some stumps, which only looked slightly decayed, were actually so decayed that only about a 5cm diameter of timber was supporting the house. By the looks of it, many of them broke in the process of getting them out. House is now on steel (perimeter) and concrete (centre) stumps and we're glad we forked out the money to get it done.

    Cheers,
    Lotte

  15. #14
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    I've restumped a few houses and generally if one stump is gone, all the others are well on the way.

    Restump the whole house and avoid recurrent hassles.
    Regards, Bob Thomas

    www.wombatsawmill.com

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