Message - Re: garage conversion

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Posted by  JWmHarmon on February 16, 2004 at 13:59:30:

In Reply to:  Re: garage conversion posted by long island on February 16, 2004 at 07:44:02:

Does water run into or out of your garage now? If you pour a bucket of water on the garage floor two feet from the garage door, does the water run towards a drain in the garage floor or does it run out the door?

If you pour a bucket of water outside the garage door about a foot away, does it run off down the driveway or does it run towards the garage door (or even into the garage)?

You will be creating a crawl space under the floor you intend to build. You will probably need to vent this space to prevent the buildup of moisture. If you don't then you could create a mold problem or, if the water vapor condenses on the wood framing, the framing could rot. You might also have water vapor coming through the concrete slab. You might want to consider vapor-proofing the slab before building the floor.

Your choice of concrete block or wood stud framing for the former garage door opening is your choice. Either one should be satisfactory. The finished design look should be the main criterion for determining which to use. A treated lumber sill plate would be appropriate in either case.

One detail to consider is how to seal the joint between the slab at the door and the new wall. You would not want wind driven rain to collect and run under the sill plate. Proper flashing of this joint is essential.

You might want to consider using a concrete saw and jack hammer and removing two to three feet of the driveway in front of the door so that you can create a drainage swale immediately in front of the door. This would help prevent moisture problems at the sill plate.

Do you know how the garage entrance is built? Does the doorway have a foundation under it that is below frost level? If not, you may need to demolish part of the garage floor under the door, just enough to let you dig down for a proper foundation. If you don't have a proper foundation under the garage door area, you may have problems with the wall during any freeze- thaw cycle in cold climates. Another solution is to bump the wall out a few inches from the garage slab. This would allow room for a proper foundation and gives you a choice for a different visual look of the infill area. This requires some demolition of the driveway immediately in front of the garage door opening.

You have lots of options from the simple to the complex. Best wishes for you project.

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