Stone Masonry

A stone foundation can be made of field stone, or quarried stone. Field stone is just as it sounds, stones that were collected from the fields in the surrounding area. Quarried stone has been excavated and processed at a quarry. Quarried stones are usually squared stones such as granite or sandstone or naturally flat shale type pieces of limestone etc. Typically you will find the more expensive larger quarried decorative stone being used above grade on top of a field stone or smaller quarried stone foundation. Often you will find the corners to be much larger corner stones to add strength and stability to the foundation.

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Types of Stone and Masonry Foundations

These types of foundations can be subdivided
into 2 classifications:

  • Composed of variable sized fieldstones piled atop one another with mortar or parging used to fill the gaps.

Stone Masonry Foundation Problems

1. Waterproofing

Regardless of which stone or masonry type your foundation is; the most effective solution for permanent waterproofing solution is usually an Internal Breakout. Sealing the outside of a stone or rubble foundation with tar is simply not a permanent waterproofing solution. Any movement in any part of the wall will result in water seepage and a wet basement.

The addition of an external waterproofing membrane is no guarantee of a dry basement. The membrane cannot be adequately tied to this type of foundation. Additionally, even if this was not the case; an external membrane does not address the issue of hydrostatic pressure causing leakage at the wall/floor junction and through the basement floor itself.

2. Weeping Tile

Typically houses built atop stone foundations were built at times when outside drain tiles were not installed. In many of these structures, the footings are minimal or almost non existant. If there is drainage pipe on the exterior, it has usually been installed at the soil level below the foundations. Serious soil erosion is often an issue. Each time water enters the drain system, some fine soil can be carried with it. This continues until a structural problem arises from the undermining or the drainage system becomes clogged with silt. In these cases, we will recommend our Internal Breakout procedure. No one can stop water from permeating through the foundation. The solution for both health and structural reasons is to collect the water into a sump pit and pump it out.

Stone Masonry History

Building with stone has a history almost as long as man himself. The strength and general availability of stone mad it easy for man to use it as a building material. From early times man has use mortar between the stones to build structures that would endure so much longer than organic materials. Mortar is more elastic than concrete and will allow the expansion and contraction required by a large masonry wall without cracking.

3. Window Wells

Any time a window, air vent, or chimney etc., are located below grade a well of some sort is required. A window well is a shaped piece of corrugated galvanized steel, built on-site wood or concrete or a custom prefab designer well. A basic galvanized well may seem like a simple item with simple installation. If that were true, fixing window wells would not feature so prominently in DryBasements.com Ltd.'s business. Improper sizing, placement, installation, drain structure are some of the problems remedied on a regular basis by DryBasements.com. Visit our Window Well page for more information.

4. Sewer Backup

Whether connected to the municipal sanitary sewer alone or to both storm and sanitary sewers, your home could be susceptible to a backup. With today's weather being so unpredictable and extreme weather events being regular news items, it makes sense to ensure that your home is protected.