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  • FIRST POST
    • Nausing
    • By Nausing 14th Sep 17, 10:54 AM
    • 7Posts
    • 2Thanks
    Nausing
    Building Survey shows a bulge to the external wall.
    • #1
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:54 AM
    Building Survey shows a bulge to the external wall. 14th Sep 17 at 10:54 AM
    Hi all,

    First time poster so go easy on me..

    We are in the process of buying a lovely detached house but the building survey has come back that there is a 'significant bulge' to one of the external side walls which is 'progressive due to recent cracks observed inside the property'

    It has previously been worked on because there is a wall tie present (metal X at first floor joists level). but the owner has no paperwork to show about what was done and if the issue was resolved.

    The building surveyor suggests we have leak detection specialists to find an issue underground which could be the cause however a bulge to me suggests the issue is due to the loft conversion installed 10-15 years ago causing extra weight from above.

    Has anyone had anything similar to this and what work can be done (and cost) to prevent the wall from bulging further in the future. I do not want trouble selling the property in the future.

    Thank you.
Page 1
    • Wookey
    • By Wookey 14th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    • 803 Posts
    • 403 Thanks
    Wookey
    • #2
    • 14th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    • #2
    • 14th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    How old is the house? Is the external wall a gable wall or is it carrying roof trusses/joists from the floors above? If it's a gable wall that isn't carrying joists etc then it's unlikely to be the loft conversion. Is there any sign of any bulging inside other than cracks? Is it possible that the bulge itself has been there since the house was constructed? a gust of wind can affect a freshly built wall. If your surveyor thinks a leakage test is needed then that is where to start, water erosion of foundations can be pretty serious and if this is something that has been going on for decades unchecked then i would avoid buying the house altogether, it can be down to a burst pipe or bad or non existent drainage.
    Norn Iron Club member No 353
    • Nausing
    • By Nausing 14th Sep 17, 3:25 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Nausing
    • #3
    • 14th Sep 17, 3:25 PM
    • #3
    • 14th Sep 17, 3:25 PM
    How old is the house? Is the external wall a gable wall or is it carrying roof trusses/joists from the floors above? If it's a gable wall that isn't carrying joists etc then it's unlikely to be the loft conversion. Is there any sign of any bulging inside other than cracks? Is it possible that the bulge itself has been there since the house was constructed? a gust of wind can affect a freshly built wall. If your surveyor thinks a leakage test is needed then that is where to start, water erosion of foundations can be pretty serious and if this is something that has been going on for decades unchecked then i would avoid buying the house altogether, it can be down to a burst pipe or bad or non existent drainage.
    Originally posted by Wookey
    The house was built between 1880-1890. The gable wall looks new compared to the other bricks. Probably rebuilt when the loft conversion went in.

    No signs of bulge from inside the house.

    The bugle is central between the bottom of the gable wall and the floor. The wall tie is central to the bugle at 1st floor joist level.

    It just doesn't seem logical that a wall will bulge from the middle if the ground below is moving for whatever reason. A bulge in anything would suggest some force from above or lack of connection between the wall and joist,right?
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 14th Sep 17, 4:14 PM
    • 401 Posts
    • 479 Thanks
    ProDave
    • #4
    • 14th Sep 17, 4:14 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Sep 17, 4:14 PM
    If it has been rebuilt semi recently, it might be a cavity wall with the wall ties failed, so only the outer leaf is bulging (hence nothing looking wrong inside)

    Can you phone the surveyor and speak to him? what he can tell you in person may explain the issue a lot better than words can. He may be able to advise how urgent the work is?

    Is there building control paperwork fr the loft conversion? Quite often for a loft conversion steel joists are inserted gable to gable to take the weight of the loft, so it could still be related to the conversion.
    • Nausing
    • By Nausing 15th Sep 17, 10:10 AM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Nausing
    • #5
    • 15th Sep 17, 10:10 AM
    • #5
    • 15th Sep 17, 10:10 AM
    If it has been rebuilt semi recently, it might be a cavity wall with the wall ties failed, so only the outer leaf is bulging (hence nothing looking wrong inside)

    Can you phone the surveyor and speak to him? what he can tell you in person may explain the issue a lot better than words can. He may be able to advise how urgent the work is?

    Is there building control paperwork fr the loft conversion? Quite often for a loft conversion steel joists are inserted gable to gable to take the weight of the loft, so it could still be related to the conversion.
    Originally posted by ProDave
    The gable wall looks fine. The bulge is central to the bottom of the gable wall to the ground. Its the section of wall that wasn't rebuilt. It's victorian so i guess there is no cavity.

    Would it make sense that the loft is too heavy for the external walls and causing the bulge?

    Thank you
    • Mutton Geoff
    • By Mutton Geoff 15th Sep 17, 11:45 AM
    • 947 Posts
    • 994 Thanks
    Mutton Geoff
    • #6
    • 15th Sep 17, 11:45 AM
    • #6
    • 15th Sep 17, 11:45 AM
    a bulge to me suggests the issue is due to the loft conversion installed 10-15 years ago causing extra weight from above
    Originally posted by Nausing

    A bulge in anything would suggest some force from above or lack of connection between the wall and joist,right?
    Originally posted by Nausing

    Would it make sense that the loft is too heavy for the external walls and causing the bulge?
    Originally posted by Nausing

    You seem to be trying to convince yourself the loft conversion is the cause of this. Why not just let a structural engineer/building surveyor work out what is wrong and whether it is an issue?
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    • Nausing
    • By Nausing 15th Sep 17, 1:34 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Nausing
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 17, 1:34 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 17, 1:34 PM
    You seem to be trying to convince yourself the loft conversion is the cause of this. Why not just let a structural engineer/building surveyor work out what is wrong and whether it is an issue?
    Originally posted by Mutton Geoff
    You are right. I think I will progress with the surveyors suggestions
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