"Understanding Your Home" by Building Inspector Mark Visser
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The floor can be lowered, in most cases, as long as you remember:
- To consult a soil expert before starting.
- That the maximum step down slope is 2 in 3.
- Not to disturb the soil immediately beside and under the existing footing.
- To install a solid poured concrete bulkhead.


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Lowering the Basement Floor
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If you are thinking of lowering the floor you should keep in mind that the new floor will be much smaller than the original floor because of the required bulkhead. A slope of 2 in 3 means that you will loose 3" (75 mm), of floor space for every 2" (50 mm) you lower the floor.
Example: If you lower the floor by 12" (300 mm), you will loose 18" (450 mm) of floor space along each wall. Also, adjustments may have to be made to the heating and plumbing systems, including sewer lines.
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