Basement Lowering/Underpinning

  • Basement Lowering/Underpinning
    Stone foundation wall being underpinned

  • Stone foundation wall being underpinned
    Underpinning completed

  • Underpinning completed
    Sections of wall being poured for underpinning

    Engineer specifications

  • Sections of wall being poured for underpinning
    Concrete poured wooden form for benching system

  • Concrete poured wooden form for benching system
    Form created for Benching

    Rebars put in

  • Form created for Benching
    Wooden forms put into place for underpinning

  • Wooden forms put into place for underpinning
    Creating a form with steel bars to create a very strong bench

    Internal Benching

  • Creating a form with steel bars to create a very strong bench
    Forms installed

    External Benching System

  • Forms installed
    Installing benching system sections at a time

    Internal Benching System

  • Installing benching system sections at a time
    Concrete poured and smoothed to create a good looking bench

    External Bench

  • Concrete poured and smoothed to create a good looking bench
    Bench and wall waterproofed once concrete has hardened

    External Bench System

  • Bench and wall waterproofed once concrete has hardened
    Pouring concrete in the forms

  • Pouring concrete in the forms
    Concrete poured in benches

    Internal Bench system

  • Concrete poured in benches
    Concrete poured and dried. Benching is complete

    Internal Bench

If you are looking for more livable space in your home, the basement is the first place you should look. But what if your basement is unfinished or needs to be lowered to provide a comfortable space for your family?

In many older homes, the basement was never meant to be a living space with low ceilings and exposed ductwork reducing the amount of headroom. Basement lowering is definitely no easy feat considering the amount of resources required. However, it goes a long way to expand your living space.

Benefits of Basement Lowering:

Also known as underpinning, basement lowering entails digging out the basement floor several feet down. This will add value to your home by ensuring the basement can easily be accessed and used. In addition, underpinning also enhances the integrity of the structure thus uplifting the face of your home. Generally these basements are about 6 ft high, and lowering the basement by 2 ft for a total of 8 ft for headroom is the desired height.

Here are some terms and processes you will want to familiarize yourself with before you meet with a contractor.

Benching:

The benching system is used to create extra living space. The benching system is a sister to underpinning system, it will allow you to create the same overall height gain but it minimizes your square footage. If the area is finished according to the benching system then this works for many applications. It is a system that is less costly then underpinning and takes half the time.

Benching process:

Basement Waterproofing Benching Process
CONCRETE POURED AND DRIED. BENCHING IS COMPLETE.

First step is to have engineer drawings and permits.

  • The concrete floor is removed
  • The soil is excavated to its proper elevations, pending on the height required will determine how far out from the wall the concrete needs to project
  • If you lower your basement 1 ft down then this means your concrete bench needs to be 1ft to 1 ½ ft out from interior wall
  • Once excavated the perimeter is formed for the benching to be poured
  • The new plumbing is installed, if the elevations for new plumbing cannot be meet then a sewer injector will be required.
  • The interior drainage system is then installed to waterproofing the property
  • A minimum of 3 inches of ¾ gravel is placed on floor for base
  • Then new concrete floor is installed and trowel finished

 

Underpinning:

The underpinning system is used for one main reason to create extra living space. This system will allow you to increase the overall height of your basement and the square footage. Most home owners choose to go this route because it gives them the options to use their basement as a rental property which in return will give them a source of income, or to gain a fully finished basement.

Process for underpinning:

Basement lowering and underpinning
UNDERPINNING COMPLETED

First step is to have engineer drawings and permits.

  • Concrete floor is removed and the soil is excavated to proper elevation
  • The pins are dug out in sections according to the engineers drawings, typically in three stages
  • If new posts are required then new footings for posts are installed, which means temporary jacks are installed to support beam
  • After the first stage of pins is completed there is a 2 inch space between the existing footings and concrete where a 2 inch dry pack grout is installed.
  • Once all three stages are completed, the new plumbing is installed, if the elevations for new plumbing cannot be meet then a sewer injector will be required.
  • The interior drainage system is then installed in order to waterproof the property
  • A minimum of 3 inches of ¾ gravel is placed on floor for base
  • Then new concrete floor is installed and trowel finished

 

Find Out More About The Cost Of Underpinning Your Basement - Visit Our Blog

Basement lowering goes a long way in giving your home a complete makeover. However, it is a huge job that will affect the overall structure of your home and you have to do it right. Don’t take any chances or cut corners and make sure the company you choose to do the work has underpinning and liability insurance.

RCC Waterproofing is fully insured and happy to provide customer references.

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