Re-leveling a mobile home

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Kathy Boivin

Re-leveling a mobile home

Post by Kathy Boivin » Fri Oct 24, 2003 9:00 pm

We recently bought a 1987 Zimmer mobile home. It is on a gravel pad and we do not think it has been leveled since it was first placed there in 1987. It seems to slope down hill in the kitchen area and towards the bedroom on the left hand side of the mobile. It does not have any pads (pressure treated or ABS) under the current blocks used to support the mobile. It is possible to level the mobile ourselves or should we hire a professional? If we can level ourselves, then what would be the best procedure? We are very new to this. WE have heard about using a water level but are unsure of how they work? Any advice or assistance would be greatly appreciated. thank you


Re: Re-leveling a mobile home

Post by Tom » Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:03 am

Can it be done yourself? Yes, but it does take some mechanical ability. Its not easy, lets put it that way. There is a kit available at in the books and parts section with instructions on how to do it. If your at all unsure about your abilities, let a professional do the work. Tom

Bill Fry

Re: Re-leveling a mobile home

Post by Bill Fry » Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:39 pm

If your home is a multisection it would be wise not to attempt this yourself.As mentioned by the other poster this is not a simple task.

Theodore Drummond

Re: Re-leveling a mobile home

Post by Theodore Drummond » Sun Oct 26, 2003 2:10 am

I am Theodore Drummond with 40 years experience in the construction business and have never seen such a mess as the mobile home business as for placing a building on a foundation as this trade.
No. one I find it rediculas as for them being surported only on the steel beams that come with them . There is too much overhang too the outside walls. I know this from experience of my son's doulble wide. The building code for conventianal construction syas no more then 24 inch over hang and here his double wide has 40 inches . All floors are bendind down from the weight of the out side walls, because of the weight of the walls and roof. My daughters trailer is also doing the same and it is only one year old. There needs to be some pressure put from the ground to these out side walls for keeping them from saging. My son's double wide is also doing the same where they come together in the middle of the house. How can the loan agencies allow this too go on like this? Some one needs to start paying attention to what is too the homes that all ready sold and having problems with doors opening and floors saging .

Wake up people.


Re: Re-leveling a mobile home

Post by rmurray » Sun Oct 26, 2003 9:29 am

Candidly it seems that their homes are not set right..The only way to know is to check the set up manual and compare the set...This is what the code requires....but your local inspector might not be very careful in checking the they should...

Most homes are built with outriggers from the frame to the exterior walls...designed to take the forces to the frame..even these home will have some requirement for some perimeter blocking around the outside walls..

Some homes are built without the outriggers...but usually require extensive perimeter blocking to keep these problems from happening..

Basically I am might be partially right about some dealers not setting the home local building inspector is just as paid good money for a permit..they should have done their job as well...

Check the set up manuals of these them with the actual set up...the dealer might very well have some obligation still...even if the warranty period is over..


Re: This sounds like a George Porter type thread here..

Post by Tahlborn » Sun Oct 26, 2003 4:52 pm

Replying to Theodore Drummond, it sounds like the 2 homes you are talking about were sold without proper foundations. The dealer didn't do his part by insuring the home would be set up on a proper foundation.

Go read the columns posted on this site by George Porter, who hosts training seminars to teach dealers the correct way to set a home.

As rmurray mentions, the house MUST be set up according to the manufacturers owners and set-up manual. A home can not be set-up on bare soil, or untested (for compaction) soil, or without proper blocking/piers.

I'll bet that if you read the owners manuals on the homes you mentioned, they require perimeter blocking at stragic locations, not just under the steel frame.
You most likely should have blocking under doors, large windows, under the marriage line (especially where openings over 4 are located) and where heavy items such as fireplaces are located.

I suggest to everyone, no matter what state they are in to always pay the extra money for a permanent full perimeter concrete foundation.



Re: This sounds like a George Porter type thread here..

Post by Tom » Sun Oct 26, 2003 8:06 pm

I dont necessarily agree with the need for a full foundation. Blocking points are provided by the manufacturer to the dealer, to the Set Up company. If they are followed to a T, there wont be problems. Older homes did indeed have problems with wall sagging. But that was a construction problem, not a blocking problem. Doubles are no different, properly blocked, there wont be problems. Tom


Re: This sounds like a George Porter type thread here..

Post by Mac » Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:39 pm

I did a block foundation on a full slab... how wonderful to have a nice, dry, rodent-proof space.

Jim Talon


Post by Jim Talon » Thu Nov 13, 2003 10:11 am

I originally came to this forum to learn how to re-level my manufactured home,
expecting to find concrete rather than abstract suggestions from the "experts".

I am disappointed...

It is self-evident that the releveling of a manufactured home is HARD work, and
to reiterate this truth is nothing short of procryptic rhetoric designed to divert
the question. Moreover, the poster's skill level ( or absence thereof) is not the
issue for debate or consideration since the poster will surely know his/her own
capabilities. I am a carpenter, electrician, and plumber, but it is not necessary for me to confide this to you for you to be able to answer my questions about
house leveling, a subject about which I know virtually nothing-- if I did I would
not be here in the first place!

Everyone who has ever purchased a manufactured home realizes that the
instruction "manual" is better put to use as toilet paper than legitimate
instructions for the leveling of ones home.

It is also pretty much universally known by manufactured home owners that
the distributor from which the home was purchased has only one overriding
interest: make the sale and get the customer out of the office; details of
dissatisfaction can later be placed on the compaint merry-go-round. Within
this same vein, the typical commercial home re-levelers ( at least in my
area) are basically little more than scam artists who charge a premium for
their efforts and offer ill-advised and shoddy workmanship in return.

What would REALLY be instructive here is some solid, practical, and
technical answers to the questions posted by the owners. For instance:
what type of jacks to use and their typical placement and operation. An
explanation of the construction, calibration, and use of a water level; some
idea about what point of reference is to be used for measurement when
the re-leveling process is being set up; and other relevant information of this type.

It is assumed that the purpose of this forum is to provide useful information, not
a library referral/ sales service or an opportunity for egotistical posturing.

Jim Talon


Re: Re-leveling

Post by Tracy » Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:57 am


When you talk about this 40". I know you are taking this measurement from the main I-beam..

Did someone cheat you out of your outriggers?

Go back, take another look and let us know how many outriggers this home was manufactured with, the length of the outriggers, and the length of your home.

The length of outriggers play a very important role in the way the house "needs to be set"

The only reason I ask is, I have seen homes built with short outriggers that allow for full basement set, but never intended, or were never placed on a foundation.

Blocked accordingly "Under wider windows, each side of every exterior door and patio door, and every 8' accordingly" a home should not "bend"

Tracy Mason

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