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Thread: Replacing Cinder Blocks

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member Master Brian's Avatar
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    Default Replacing Cinder Blocks

    I have a box out that has a cinder block foundation wall. The cinder block portion is a crawl space under the box out. In order to gain access under the box out, they left 3 blocks, 2 on one course and 1 on the course above, loose so they could be pulled out to gain access. No idea when that was done, but I've lived here about 2yrs now and don't see any negative issues with this, except it allows the cold in.

    To fix the cold issue, I've created an opening from my basement, so I'm wanting to affix these loose blocks back into place. There are another 2 blocks that need to be affixed as well. One served as a vent on one side and the other as a vent on the other side.

    The question is, since these blocks aren't providing any apparent structural stability, what is the best/easiest way to replace them? My neighbor is a brick mason and he said he would be happy to come over later this week and install them for me, with mortor. Obviously, this is probably the best method, but even though there is insulation covering these spots, my basement is getting colder. So I don't have to bug him or wait, I have thought about buyin some tubes of mortor repair, shiming the blocks and squirting that in and then from the inside using spray foam to fill any left over cracks. Is that a bad idea? Should I just be patient and wait? The temps are supposed to be in the 40's for lows all week....

  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Since he offered, I'd let him mortar them in place. While their absence may not compromise the structure, they certainly don't help matters any by not being load bearing. using a caulk like substitute for mortar won't provide any structural strength, but would lock them in place. By being absent, the beam above it must be stronger than if they were there. That probably wasn't done...IMHO mortar is the right thing.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member Master Brian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jadnashua View Post
    Since he offered, I'd let him mortar them in place. While their absence may not compromise the structure, they certainly don't help matters any by not being load bearing. using a caulk like substitute for mortar won't provide any structural strength, but would lock them in place. By being absent, the beam above it must be stronger than if they were there. That probably wasn't done...IMHO mortar is the right thing.
    You are probably correct. It's amazing how sometimes you can play things through your head and come up with all sorts of reasons why not to do it, but once you ask the question, it really becomes clear!!!

    Thanks!

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