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Crawlspace to Basement: An Overview

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A crawlspace conversion can turn your useless PA, NJ, or DE crawlspace into a brand new, beautiful basement.

Crawlspace excavation is a complicated business and we at Basement Solutions like to keep the customer and homeowner informed. With that, here are a few steps and procedures that we follow to get the job done.

Steps/Procedure

First we locate a space on the outside wall of your crawl space. It will be used to safely enter and exit the new basement. Most often this is with a temporary set of steps for easy access. Eventually a permanent set of steps and potentially a Bilco door will be installed.

The opening in the wall should be large enough to accommodate at least a 36-inch door, preferably making the area for the steps at least 48-inches wide. One note of warning at this point:

  • If your soil is overly high in sand or gravel content or even too saturated for a part of the year, this procedure should be thought out more carefully and potentially not done at all. It can be dangerous and you may damage your foundation or potentially lose your home.

Before we dig the hole for your outside exit, we build a header. This will hold the floor of the home in place while you remove the old foundation. We then proceeed to dig to a depth that will allow a concrete slab and still have clearance under your floor joist.

We remove the soil from the excavation site continuously as the ground is dug out. Once the soil removed and to the depth you wish, we pour a footer that is eight inches thick and 16 inches wide.

Before pouring the cap, we then fill between the block and soil under the old foundation with sand or “pea gravel.” Assuming that the home probably has some sort of support under the floor system, we will have to provide support for the beam that was formerly supporting the floor while we excavate. We will pour a footer for a steel post that will support the floor of the new space.

  • The footer for this should be eight inches thick and 24 inches square.

We then level the floor area for the new slab and install perforated plastic pipe that drains to an automatic sub pump. This pump dispenses the water roughly two or three yards away from the foundation of the home. Pea gravel is a good fill for under the slab but sand is also commonly used.

We build your stairwell to the outside and cover it with a steel “pre-fab” unit such as a Bilco door. These units are reliable and often last for many years. The floor plan of your home often allows for a stairway to the basement from inside.

Contact Us

The choice seems a bit obvious to someone with an old, musky crawlspace and the option to turn it into something with function.

Don’t wait until it’s too late and you’re facing serious problems! Give us a call at 610-495-9111 for your FREE ESTIMATE or visit our website www.basements911.com for further information.