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To word the question another way, how much of the foundation wall needs to be exposed below the siding? My neighbor isn't the best at home projects and decided to install a brick pad so that the soil is above my siding. Obviously aluminum siding on top of fire rated drywall (don't get my started) is not an appropriate foundation material, causing a lot of water damage. So I'm having him dig it out so the foundation is exposed, but I need to know how far to tell him he needs to dig.

Location is in Virginia, we usually get a good 6" snow storm every year, sometimes a lot more. Other parts of the neighborhood seem to have at least 6" or so.

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Four to six inches is what my home inspector told me. Besides the risk of water intrusion, any area where dirt extends above the sill plate is a huge invitation to wood destroying insects like termites or carpenter ants.

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Yup, completely agree with the insect part. I'm still in amazement that my neighbor didn't consider that when he built up that part of his yard. –  BMitch Sep 24 '11 at 23:02

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