How to stop cracks widening in walls


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Hello, I am looking to buy a small property. There are noticable cracks in the walls. Seller says that the house, built around 1920, is resting on clay. As the ground moves it causes uneven movement of the walls, which is responsible for the cracks. Seller says he has consulted a building engineer who has recommended putting pins around cracks to prevent the cracks from widening. I do not know what this process involves or whether it would stop the cracks from widening permanently, or is it just a temporary solution. Can anyone help? All responses will be greatly appreciated.
 

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Well, I am NOT an engineer, but I've been "around the track a few times". Putting dowels ("pins" as he/she calls it) will do nothing to prevent the crack from enlarging. Cosmetically, it might provide the support for additional plaster to conceal the original problem, being, the foundation of the building is shifting. Any building whose footings/foundation shift or relax over decades will manifest itself with cracks in building finishes, doors binding on closure, misaligned windows, etc.

Repairing the cracks could buy you many years of esthetically pleasing ceiling/walls, but I suspect in 20 more years, they will begin to appear again. If it were me, I'd patch them, re-paint, and forget about it.
 

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