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RE: Reinforcing High Basement Walls

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-----Original Message-----

what is the point of placing straps with bolts or other elements  on the
outside (interior) of a basement wall? In Calif. we must use vertical as
well as horiz. reinf. in the wall. This also used but to a lesser extent in
Illinois when I was practicing there 40 yrs. ago.

Stan Scholl, P.E.
Laguna Beach, CA


In Canada, houses and certain other small buildings are not required to be
engineered. There are prescriptive requirements in each Provincial Building
Code, typically derived from our National Building Code. Engineering is only
required if conditions do not meet the limits in the Code, which was the
case for Gary's original request.

The default basement wall construction here is unreinforced concrete, or
(less common now) unreinforced concrete block. The wall thickness is a
function of the type of construction, the height of exterior grade above the
basement floor, and the presence or absence of support at the top of the
wall. In some circumstances the Code values cannot be justified by
calculation - but that's the way it is. Failure of concrete walls is very
rare (and most likely the result of poor backfilling procedures rather than
any fundamental deficiency).

Peter James

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