NCMA TEK CONCRETE MASONRY FOUNDATION WALL DETAILS. TEK 5-3A Details (2003)

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1 NCMA TEK National Concrete Masonry Association an information series from the national authority on concrete masonry technology CONCRETE MASONRY FOUNDATION WALL DETAILS TEK 5-3A Details (2003) Keywords: architectural details, basement wall, crawlspace wall, foundation wall, pier, plain concrete masonry, reinforced concrete masonry, residential details, stemwall INTRODUCTION is used to construct various foundation wall types, including full basement walls, crawlspace walls, stem walls and piers. is well suited for below grade applications, because of its strength, durability, economy, and resistance to fire, insects and noise. The modular nature of concrete masonry allows floor plan and wall height changes to be easily accommodated as well. can be used to provide a strong, durable, energy efficient and insect resistant foundation for all building types. This TEK contains details for various types of concrete masonry foundation walls, with accompanying text as appropriate. The reader is referred to TEK 3-11, Concrete Masonry Basement Wall Construction, TEK 19-3A, Preventing Water Penetration in Below- Concrete Masonry Walls and NCMA's Basement Manual for more detailed design and construction information (refs. 2, 3, 4, respectively). Waterproof or dampproof membrane Backfill Free ing backfill Undisturbed soil Foundation Flashing Drip edge Sealant Fill all voids under flashing with mortar TEK 5-3A 2003 National Concrete Masonry Association (replaces TEK 5-3) Footings Footings lie under the basement, crawlspace or stem wall and transfer structural loads from the building to the supporting soil. Footings are typically cast-in-place concrete, placed beneath the frost depth to prevent damage resulting from heaving caused by freezing of water in the soil. Footings should be placed on undisturbed native soil, unless this soil is unsuitable, weak or soft. In this case, the soil should be removed and replaced with compacted soil, gravel or concrete. Similarly, tree roots, construction debris and ice Insulation Optional footing Figure 1 Plain Basement Wall Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier Concrete masonry wall Mesh or other grout stop device Concrete masony wall Horizontal joint reinforcement, as required 1 2 in. (13 mm) isolation joint Concrete slab Aggregate base Optional foundation Full bed joint

2 should be removed prior to placing footings. Unless otherwise required, footings should be carefully aligned so that the concrete masonry wall will be near the center line of the footing. Although the top surface of poured concrete footings should be relatively level, it should generally not be troweled smooth, as a slightly roughened surface enhances the bond between the mortar and concrete. design is governed by Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete, ACI 318 (ref. 5), and concrete foundations are constructed with tolerances conforming to the requirements of Standard Specifications for Tolerances for Concrete Construction and Materials, ACI 117 (ref. 9). BASEMENT WALLS Basements are typically built as conditioned space so that they can be used for storage, work or living space. Because of this, water penetration resistance is of paramount importance to basement wall design and construction. Following recommended backfill procedures will help prevent basement wall cracking during this operation. Walls should always be properly braced to resist backfill soil loads or have the first floor diaphragm in place prior to backfilling. Otherwise, a wall designed to be supported at the top may crack or even fail from overstressing the wall. Similarly, heavy equipment, such as bulldozers or cranes, should not be operated over Flashing Drip edge Sealant Fill all voids under flashing with mortar Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier Reinforced bond beam Vertical reinforcement, the backfill during construction unless the basement walls are appropriately designed for the higher resulting loads. The top 4 to 8 in. (102 to 203 mm) of backfill should be low permeability soil so rain water absorption into the backfill is minimized. Finished grade should be sloped away from the building. Control joints are not typically used in foundation walls due to concerns with waterproofing the joint and the fact that shrinkage is less significant in below grade walls due to relatively constant temperature and moisture conditions. If warranted, horizontal joint reinforcement can be installed as a crack control measure. The foundation shown in Figures 1 and 2 can also be located on the interior side of the footing, or on both sides if necessary. The should be placed below the top of the footing. The optional footing shown, such as 2 in. (51 mm) PVC pipe at 8 ft (2400 mm) on center, allows water on the interior to reach the foundation. Footing s can either be cast into the footing or constructed using plastic pipes through the bottom of the first course of masonry, directly on top of the footing. For reinforced construction (Figure 2), reinforcing bars must be properly located to be fully functional. In most cases, vertical reinforcement is positioned towards the interior face of below grade walls to provide the greatest resistance to soil pressures. A solid top course on the below grade concrete masonry wall spreads loads from the building above and also improves soil gas and termite resistance. Where only the top course is to be grouted, wire mesh or another equivalent grout stop material can be used to contain the grout to the top course. Note that local codes may restrict the use of foam plastic insulation below grade in areas where the hazard of termite damage is high. Backfill Waterproof or dampproof membrane Foundation Free ing backfill Undisturbed soil Grout Figure 2 Reinforced Basement Wall wall Vertical reinforcement, Horizontal joint reinforcement, as required Isolation joint Concrete slab Optional foundation Optional footing STEMWALLS FOR CRAWLSPACES Unlike basements, crawlspaces are typically designed as unconditioned spaces, either vented or unvented. Several alternate crawlspace constructions are shown in Figures 3 and 4. Although most building codes require operable louvered vents near each corner of a crawl space to reduce moisture buildup, research has shown that the use of a moisture retardant ground cover eliminates the need for vents in many locations (ref. 6). If the crawlspace is vented, the

3 Vertical reinforcement, Horizontal joint reinforcement, as required wall Continuous band joist or blocking, pressure treated or use moisture barrier Floor joist Reinforced bond beam, Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier Termite shield required when no bond beam is provided below sill minimum 12 in. grade or below frost line, whichever is stem wall Install for water removal if not higher than adjacent exterior grade for majority of perimeter Figure 3 Crawlspace Stemwall with Masonry Above floor, exposed pipes and ducts are typically insulated. If unvented, either the walls or the floor above can be insulated. Unvented crawlspaces must have a floor covering to minimize moisture and, where applicable, soil gas entry. A vapor retarder (typically 6-mil (0.15 mm) polyethylene, PVC or equivalent) is good practice to minimize water migration and soil gas infiltration. A 2 1 /2 in. (64 mm) concrete mud slab is generally used when a more durable surface is desired for access to utilities. A thicker concrete slab may be desirable, particularly if the crawlspace will be used for storage. A dampproof coating on the exterior crawlspace wall will also help prevent water entry into the crawlspace. STEMWALLS FOR SLAB ON GRADE A stemwall with slab on gradesupports the wall above and often also provides a brick ledge to support an exterior masonry veneer. Figures 5 and 6 show concrete masonry stemwalls with masonry and with frame above grade walls, respectively. Because the wall is exposed to soil on both sides, waterproofing or dampproofing coatings are generally not required. Stemwalls are typically insulated on the exterior of the masonry. If insulated on the interior, it is important to place insulation in the joint between the slab edge and the foundation wall to avoid thermal bridging. A stemwall with brick ledge is shown in Figure 6. For this case, note that masonry design codes typically require a minimum 1 in. (25 mm) clear air space between the masonry and backup to ensure an open age cavity. A 1 in. (25 mm) air space is considered appropriate if special precautions are taken to keep the air space clean (such as by beveling the mortar bed away from the cavity or by drawing a piece of wood up the cavity to collect mortar droppings). Otherwise, a 2 in. (51 mm) air space is preferred. FOUNDATION PIERS Foundation piers (see Figure 7) are isolated structural elements used to support the building above. Structural design ensures the piers are sized and spaced to carry the necessary building loads. Piers typically are in enclosed crawlspaces, so recommendations for moisture and soil gas resistance for crawlspaces should be followed for piers as well. Building Code Requirements for Masonry Structures (ref. 7) requires a foundation pier to have a minimum nominal thickness of 8 in. (203 mm), with a nominal height not exceeding four times its nominal thickness and a nominal length not exceeding three times its nominal thickness. Note that the International Building Code, (ref. 8) allows foundation piers to have a nominal height up to ten times the nominal thickness if the pier is solidly grouted, or four times the nominal thickness if it is not solidly grouted.

4 Joist Termite shield, Joist Termite shield, Stud Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier 18 in. (457 mm) min. Drain to daylight or install for water removal when below exterior grade Water resistant sheathing Brick veneer Wall tie Continuous plate 1 in. (25 mm) air space, min. for age (note: 1 in. (25 mm) is maximum when corrugated ties are used) Continuous band joist or blocking Flashing, adhered to sheathing Weeps at 32 in. (813 mm) o.c. Fill solid below flashing Exterior sheathing and finish Stud Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier minimum 12 in. grade or below frost line, whichever is 18 in. (457 mm) min. Isolation joint in. (64 mm) concrete mud slab Install for water removal if not higher than adjacent exterior grade Vapor retarder Concrete footing Mesh or other grout stop device Optional foundation Waterproof or dampproof membrane Figure 4 Crawlspace Stemwalls with Wood Frame Above minimum 12 in. grade or below frost line, whichever is

5 wall header unit Concrete slab on grade with WWF wall Isolation joint Concrete slab on grade with WWF Control joint, in concrete slab minumum 12 in. grade or below frost line, whichever is Figure 5 Slab on Stemwalls with Masonry Above Flashing Concrete slab on vapor retarder on 4 in. (102 mm) gravel Perimeter insulation, 6 in. (152 mm) concrete masonry 1 in. (25 mm) air space, min. for age, (note: 1 in. (25 mm) is maximum when corrugated ties are used) Wall ties Drip edge Sealant Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier Flashing (top adhered to backup) Weeps at 32 in. (813 mm) o.c. 10 in. (254 mm) solid concrete masonry top course, or grouted minimum 12 in. (305 mm) below grade or below frost line, whichever is Figure 6 Slab on Stemwall with Wood Frame Above

6 Strap anchor nailed to girder and embedded in masonry Sill plate Joist hanger Joist Grout at strap anchor locations 8 in. (203 mm) nominal, min. Girder Sill, pressure treated or use moisture barrier 18 in. (457 mm) min. 12 in. (305 mm) below grade or below frost line, whichever is Figure 7 Concrete Masonry Foundation Pier REFERENCES 1. Annotated Design and Construction Details for Concrete Masonry, TR 90A. National Concrete Masonry Association, Concrete Masonry Basement Wall Construction, TEK National Concrete Masonry Association, Preventing Water Penetration in Below- Concrete Masonry Walls, TEK 19-3A. National Concrete Masonry Association, Basement Manual, Design and Construction Using Concrete Masonry, TR 149. National Concrete Masonry Association, Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete, ACI American Concrete Institute, ASHRAE Handbook, Fundamentals. American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Inc., Building Code Requirements for Masonry Structures, ACI /ASCE 5-02/TMS Reported by the Masonry Standards Joint Committee, International Building Code. International Code Council, Standard Specifications for Tolerances for Concrete Construction and Materials, ACI American Concrete Institute, NATIONAL CONCRETE MASONRY ASSOCIATION To order a complete TEK Manual or TEK Index, Sunrise Valley Drive, Herndon, Virginia contact NCMA Publications (703)

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