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April 2012 Archives

Expansive Soil Movement: An Overview

The attached article provides a nice overview of the cause and results of expansive soils (http://www.usinspect.com/resources-for-you/house-facts/environmental-concerns-home/expansive-soils).  The example of the change in the soil from adding a little bit of water is very instructive.  It is easy to see how a home or building constructed on expansive or clayey soil can experience significant damage from the addition of a little water.  A common scenario is the addition of water from landscape irrigation, which can result in soil movement.  A small amount of soil movement can result in substantial damage to the building structures, and surrounding improvements, such as flatwork, roads, etc. 

San Diego Construction Jobs remain at an all time lows

The latest statistics from the Bureau of Labor statisticsshows that employment in the construction industry remains at all time lows forSan Diego County. The Februarystatistics were slightly improved from those reported for January. The January statistics were showedconstruction jobs at the lowest levels in over a decade. For comparison purposed, the number ofemployees with construction jobs in January, 2012 was roughly 50% lower thanthe number employed in August, 2006. Thearticle in the San Diego Daily Transcript can be found here: http://www.sddt.com/Construction/article.cfm?SourceCode=20120404cyb&_t=Construction+employment+improves+slightly+still+at+record+lows.

When Should I be Concerned About Cracks at my Home or Building?

A common indicator of problems related to soil movement are stress features such as cracks, separations, tilting walls, and sloping floors. Sometimes, these stress features, particularly cracks, are normal, and don't indicate a problem related to a soils problem. How can someone tell if cracks and other stress features suggest a potential problem, or represent a "normal condition?" Here are a few basic things to consider:

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