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Concrete Slab Filling Section of Brick Wall

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Posted by: from Ajax
5/8/2008 at 12:22:56 PM

Years ago before I bought this house the front of it was raised. It is a semi-detached house built in 1957. The front door was raised and I believe concrete was used to fill the hole that the lower half of the door left. This concrete slab extends 1 foot above both the kitchen floor inside and the porch outside as though whoever did this filled the space too much so there was no space above the door when installed.

What I want to know is whether this concrete slab can be cut down so that the entry to the house does not require someone to step up and then down again. As far as I know the concrete fills the space between the brick where the door was before it was raised.

I have always thought that cutting it down would cause the seal on the rest of the concrete slab to break giving me a leaky basement. Please let me know if this cutting of the concrete is able to be done without creating problems.

thanks

D

REPLIES (6)
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Date/Time5/27/2008 at 8:30:33 PM

I'm doing my best to envision what you describe. It certainly sounds odd. Concrete is porous and so truly seals nothing. To answer your question, if you want to cut the concrete down so a step does not exist at the door, yes it can be done. Yes, some of the concrete can be left if it is used as a brdge of sorts. If water leaking here is a concern, measures can be taken... caulk the perimetre and seal the remaining concrete with a coloured/clear sealer. Not sure if this helps...post/email pics if you need more and I'll be glad to help.

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Dorothy in Ajax
Date/Time5/28/2008 at 6:29:20 PM

Thanks so much Trevor. I re-read what I wrote and it confuses me LOL. To make it clearer, The house originally had the front door at ground level going into a tiny hall with 4 steps up to the living room. The hall and stairs were removed and the doorway raised to the level of the living room and kitchen. The kitchen was extended to take up the space of the upper half of the hall so that the front door entered directly into the kitchen and a closet built in the basement under it where there originally was a crawl space. A porch was then built on the front of the house. I think concrete was poured in the space where the door was, before being raised. There is now a block of concrete at the threshold that is approximately 1 foot above the porch on the outside, and 8 to 10 inches above the kitchen floor on the inside. It is this block of concrete that I would love to have cut down so that we have a normal threshold. I assume that the poured concrete filling the space where the door was has been sealed to the brick of the house in some way, I am afraid that this seal will be broken when the concrete is cut to make a lower threshold below the door. The space created at the top of the door, when it is lowered could be filled with wood or glass I expect. It is the seal that I am concerned about because it is behind the porch so inaccessible for re-sealing. I hope this makes more sense, at the moment I don't have a picture that I can post but I will see about posting one tomorrow.

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Date/Time6/5/2008 at 11:29:00 PM

If I'm understanding the situation, I don't think cutting that concrete out would cause any issues. I'm sure you know, concrete is cut all of the time for doors and windows...no big deal. If you hire a concrete contractor to do that for you it should take almost no time at all. If I have it pictured right, that is.

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Dorothy in Ajax
Date/Time6/6/2008 at 2:06:22 PM

Thanks Trevor I wish you were in Ontario to look at it. I will now look for a contractor who can see the project and quote on it.

Cheers!

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Date/Time6/13/2008 at 12:06:24 AM

Good luck with that. If there's anything else I can answer for you I'd be glad to.

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Abba's Service in Huntsville
Date/Time12/15/2008 at 11:35:25 PM

There might me a reason they raised the step and it might be to hide a problem. I had a client with this problem before and he asked me to cut the cement down. I told him I don't know why it was like that or why they did the exact same thing you are saying. I did the job and after we found out that some of the existing cement was starting to crack. What should have been done in the first place was to tear it all out and redo the whole area. I did fix his problem but it was not easy. If the existing foundation of the entrance was having problems that is why they probably did what they did. You are not the first person I have found with that problem and maybe you should get somebody that does that type of work to do this job! This is a bad time of year for that stuff anyway wait until spring or summer.

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