Q:

Where is the frost line in Cleveland, Ohio?

A:

Quick Answer

Cleveland's frost line is 42 inches, according to the city's building code. The frost line is measured to determine how deep footings must be for newly constructed buildings. Structures built too far above the frost line may suffer damage from frost heave.

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Full Answer

Frost heave happens when groundwater freezes too close to the bottom of a foundation. As the frozen soil expands, it exerts upward pressure on the structure and eventually displaces it. Because the pressure is uneven, some sections might remain unaffected, while others experience extreme force, and catastrophic damage to the slab may result.

Although Cleveland's frost line is 42 inches, the building code allows for shallower construction in some cases. Footings for one- and two-family homes built on soil subject to frost heave need only be 36 inches deep, for example, and single story building footings need only be as deep as necessary for structural support, unless the buildings are subject to heave.

Another potential danger of building too close to the frost line is that it leaves unprotected plumbing vulnerable to freezing.

During the construction process, the contractor must protect footings and foundations against freezing until the area is filled with soil, or the structure itself is far enough along to protect the footings and foundation against freezing.

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Related Questions

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    What is a frost line?

    A:

    The frost line is the maximum depth at which soil is frozen, or the lower limit of permafrost. The depth of the frost depends on the local climate, the heat transfer properties of the soil, and the adjacent materials and nearby heat sources.

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    How deep is the frost line in Michigan?

    A:

    The frost line depth for most of Michigan is 42 inches. This is the depth at which groundwater present in the soil freezes. Though this is the standard depth, other factors play a part in determining the frost depth for a particular area.

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    How deep is the frost line in Maryland?

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    The frost line in Maryland is 30 inches deep. The frost line is the depth in the ground that ground water will freeze. It is also referred to as the freezing depth or frost depth.

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    What is the frost line in Indiana?

    A:

    The frost line in Indiana is the depth that groundwater in the soil freezes during the winter. The frost line depth in Indiana ranges from 30 to 60 inches, with 30 inches being the frost line depth in the southern part of the state and 60 inches in the north.

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