A foundation wall transfers the floor, wall, roof and other building loads (including snow and occupant loads) down to the footings. The four most common types of foundations are cast-in-place concrete, concrete blocks, insulating concrete forms (ICF) and preserved wood. Precast concrete may also be used.

The required wall thickness of concrete and concrete block walls varies from 150 to 300 mm (6 to 12 in.) depending on their height and depth below grade and the lateral support provided by the floor-framing system. Table 5 (p. 265) shows minimum foundation wall thicknesses for solid concrete and concrete masonry units in stable soils. Wall thicknesses may have to be increased to support brick veneer and exterior insulation, as shown in Figure 36.

Figure 36

Adjusting foundation thickness to accommodate insulation and
masonry veneer

Source : Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)