cracks in walls

28 Feb 2011
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United Kingdom
hello - i'm going slightly bonkers with our house and keep seeing cracks everywhere. it's a 1950s build semi detached.

we've been in it 3 years and I'm not sure whether they're getting worse or not but I keep seeing what I think are new ones. there are no cracks whatsoever on the external walls or the interior external walls (if you see what I mean), this is all internal and first floor. the main problem seems to be that the internal walls on the first floor are brick/breeze block construction, but they are are not supported by any walls underneath, they therefore appear to be sagging slightly in certain places. all this seems to be historic movement (one door for instance sticks but you can see by the wear in the frame that this has been like this for years and it hasn't got any worse in the 3 years we've been here). There are also straight vertical cracks above door frames that have obviously been filled years ago and hairline cracks have reappeared where the poor filling job has been done. The worst cracks are where two internal walls join the external wall and it seems to have pulled away slightly resulting in a crack about 1-2 mm wide running down the join.
There is a massive chimney stack that goes up the middle of the house and there is no cracking or pulling away around this at all.
I don't think this time of year makes it any better because we get quite a lot of plaster cracks down plaster joins that appear in the winter and practically close completely in the summer, so I'm probably seeing more things especially as I'm looking.
There are also cracks all over the upstairs ceilings but these quite clearly follow the ceiling board lines. There are some cracks that reappear between the walls and ceilings too but it seems this is just poor joint work as I can push the ceiling up from the wall with my fingers, so it doesn't appear well jointed.

Sorry for the length, but does the above sound anything to worry about?

The only slight cracks I can see downstairs are a couple of the vertical cracks above door frames coming from the door corner, but really less than hairline (i have to squint to see them). The caulk between some coving has also slightly cracked but this appears heat related again.
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You make this sound like an Alfred Hitchcock thriller.
The cracks not serious. Most of what you describe would be explained either by shrinkage (which is normal) or slight flexing of the upstairs walls, which will happen if they are built directly off the floor.
The cracks where the walls join (1 - 2mm?) are again nothing to worry about.
Relax; maybe it's your eyes that need attention rather than the house!
You make this sound like an Alfred Hitchcock thriller.
Relax; maybe it's your eyes that need attention rather than the house!
Indeed - there were a number of cracks , and holes through walls in the Bates Motel :eek: Best go to specsavers

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