For the best, most reliable advice on foundations and concrete, you have to talk to the people in the trenches. No source of information on foundations and concrete work is better respected or more widely followed than that provided by Fine Homebuilding magazine. This latest edition from the editors of Fine Homebuilding is the biggest and most authoritative volume yet on the subject. With more than 400 illustrative on-the-job photographs and drawings, Foundations and Concrete Work is a rock-solid reference that distills decades of hands-on advice and techniques from America's finest builders.
- Form and pour a solid foundation
- Install concrete piers and footings
- Lay groundwork for patios and decks
- Waterproof a basement and keep it dry
- Retrofit and repair foundations
Quality construction begins with a strong, sturdy foundation. Whether building from scratch, adding on to a home, or doing major renovations and repairs, you'll want expert advice on foundations and concrete work to get the job done right. In this book from the editors of Fine Homebuilding magazine, engineers, contractors, and remodelers provide pro-level advice on troubleshooting common masonry mistakes, using concrete in the home landscape, and laying a foundation that will last. Whatever the concrete project, you'll find all the field-tested methods and techniques you need in this updated and expanded edition.
From the Introduction
After graduating from college I did what anybody with a B.A. in English would do: I went to work as a form carpenter on a concrete crew. I spent my days hauling heavy, smelly, cement-encrusted, oil-soaked forms in and out of trenches. You set up the forms and take them down. You scrape them off. You do it again. And usually you're walking around in mud-caked boots that feel like you're wearing a pumpkin on each foot.
I worked for a boss who delighted in ordering concrete before we were ready. He'd start filling the forms while I was still working frantically to nail them together. I still wince when I see a ready-mix truck coming down the road, but my year on that crew taught me a lot about pouring concrete and building foundations. I learned how to place anchor bolts so they could withstand a hurricane. I learned how to use rebar and wire mesh to strengthen a slab, and the consequences of not bracing forms properly (you don't want to know).
Fortunately, you don't have to spend a year walking around in muddy boots to learn what I did. This book contains all of that knowledge, and then some. Collected here are 28 articles from past issues of Fine Homebuilding. Written by builders from all over the country, these articles will help ensure that you can build a strong foundation that's dry, warm, square, and level. Do yourself one favor, though: Wait until the forms are done before you order the concrete.
Kevin Ireton, editor
Part 1: Concrete Basics.
Avoiding Common Masonry Mistakes. Working with Rebar. Placing a Concrete Driveway. Drilling Concrete? Get a Rotary Hammer. A Solid Deck Begins with Concrete Piers. Part 2: Building Foundations.
Soil: The Other Half of the Foundation. Start with Batterboards. Pouring Concrete Slabs. Building a Block Foundation. Laying Up Concrete Block. Forming and Pouring Footings. Forming and Pouring Foundations. Footing and Foundation in One Pour. Insulated Concrete Forms. A Fast Foundation for an Addition. Building a House of Insulated Concrete Block. Part 3: Waterproofing.
The Stay-Dry, No-Mold Finished Basement. Moisture-Proofing New Basements. Sealing a Crawl Space. Details for a Dry Foundation. Keeping a Basement Dry. Part 4: Retrofitting Foundations.
Foundation Drainage. When Block Foundations Go Bad. Retrofitting a Foundation. Part 5: Concrete in the Landscape.
Four Retaining Wall Choices. Building a Modular Retaining Wall. Dress Up a Block Wall with a Rock Wall. A Concrete-Paver Patio from the Bottom Up.
About the Author
Since 1981, the pages of Fine Homebuilding magazine
have inspired and instructed people who care about quality home improvement and construction. With a circulation of more than 300,000, the magazine is the premier source for information on how to build projects better, faster, and more efficiently.